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Planning conditions

So, planning permission has been granted. Now you can start building, right?

What many people don't realise is that this often not the end of the story as there may conditions attached. These appear at the bottom of your planning certificate. Often these conditions require details to be agreed with the Council or additional surveys might be needed. Some conditions control future use or occupation. The main types of condition concern:

  • Time limits

  • Pre-commencement

  • Pre occupation or use

  • Control of use

Pre-commencement conditions need to be formally discharged before any work can be undertaken. The most common of these conditions are to agree materials and landscaping.

If any of the conditions attached to a permission state 'no work shall be carried out until...' or similar a Discharge of Conditions application must be prepared and submitted. Where several conditions are attached, it is advisable to apply to discharge them together in order to save time and avoid paying the application fee more than once. A DOC application can take at least 8 weeks, so it is wise to prepare your submission in good time.

Planning Officers should now contact applicants prior to granting permission to discuss and agree pre-commencement conditions. It is vital that conditions are not agreed to lightly and that they are subsequently properly discharged. Failure to discharge or comply with conditions may mean that you are in breach of the permission and could leave you open to enforcement action, jeopardise the permission itself, or affect Community Infrastructure Levy liability.

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