Does A Summer House Need Planning Permission?

Does A Summer House Need Planning Permission?

Planning permission for a summer house – is it needed?

As we move into the warmer months, many of us are considering what we can do with the gardens and how we can make the most of our outdoor space, ready to enjoy the warmer weather.

No matter what the Great British weather throws at us, summer houses or garden buildings as they are also known, make sense. Maybe it’ll act as a space to hide away with a good book, or even a spot to work from home, or perhaps you want a space to escape from the madness of everyday family life.

Before you make any final decisions and purchases, you need to know where you stand from a legal point of view and understanding the building regulations you face is vital. Understanding whether or not you need planning permission for a summer house is essential before you get started.

Here at Juke’s Timber Solutions, as proud experts in creating summer houses for our customers, we’ve put together the following guide to summer house planning permission.

Is A Summer House a Permitted Development?

As with many other things, the answer is – it depends. As will all things related to planning permission, there is no firm answer here.

A summer house, garden building or other outbuilding will typically fall under a permitted development, meaning they don’t need planning permission. This applies should they comply with a set list of requirements.

The Legal Considerations Of A Summer House

To be exempt from planning permission, a summer house must:

  • Not take over half the garden around the total area of the original house,
  • Be a single-storey structure with a total height of 2.5 metres,
  • Have a maximum overall height of 4 metres for a dual-pitched roof or 3 metres for any other type of roof.
  • Not be used for sleeping accommodation,
  • Not be within the grounds of a listed building.

Even if you are confident that your summer house doesn’t breach any planning regulations, it’s still helpful to check with your local planning authority or local council to be sure that you won’t find yourself in any hot water.

Some areas may also be under the scrutiny of other additional rules, including national parks and areas of outstanding natural beauty.

How Big Can A Summerhouse Be Without Planning Permission?

As mentioned above, a summerhouse cannot exceed a maximum eaves height of 2.5 metres, a maximum height of 4 metres for a dual-pitched or apex roof, or 3 metres for any other roof type.

How Close Can I Build A Summer House To My Neighbours Fence?

Whilst planning rules governing garden rooms suggest that you can build as close to a neighbour’s fence as you wish, building regulations state that you leave at least one metre between you and the boundary. If you wish for your garden building to be closer to the road than the front of your house, you will need planning permission.

What If I Live Within A Conservation Area?

Conservation areas, world heritage sites and national parks are counted as ‘designated land’, which may require planning permission regardless of how carefully positioned or what the size of the structure is.

Can A Summer House Be Used As Self-Contained Accommodation?

A summer house cannot be used as self-contained accommodation. If you’re thinking about having a sofa bed for the occasional guest, you won’t need to follow regulations, however, you will need to comply with building regulations. A regular sleeping space, such as an accommodation will require planning permission and you must comply with building regulations.

How Do I Apply For Summer House Planning Permission?

If you’ve got big plans for your summer house and you will require planning permission, you’re likely wondering what your next steps are.

You will need to submit a planning application to your local council, which will involve completing a planning application form and providing the following information:

  • A site location plan,
  • A drawing of the summer house and its plans,
  • A description of the proposed development.

Should the summer house be built within the grounds of a listed building, you must provide a heritage impact statement.

Your neighbours will likely also be grateful if you take the time to discuss the structure with them, especially should they be affected in any way by the construction process.

If you live in a leasehold property, you will also have to navigate additional restrictions and requirements before making any changes.

Is Planning Permission For Garden Buildings Different in England, Scotland and Wales?

Planning permission can vary across the country, in fact, it even can vary from county to county. Scotland can sometimes be a little more rigorous about boundaries, and you’ll need planning permission if your structure comes within one metre of a neighbouring property and any part of it is more than 2.5 metres high.

As aforementioned, if you’re not sure if you should seek planning permission, it’s best to ask your local planning authority.

Where Can I Buy My Summer House?

Here at Juke’s Timber Solutions, we offer a wide range of summer houses and can even provide bespoke structures to suit your needs and requirements, based on your intended measurements.

Explore our range of sizes, styles and finishes today, and we’ll be more than happy to give you the advice you need on planning permission and the certain criteria you need to meet to ensure that you have your perfect garden room for relaxing in this summer.