Knowing project costs is essential, but how much is planning permission for you ?
Fees for planning applications vary greatly and depend on the size and type of development. They are a reflection of the size and complexity of workload for the local planning authority.
For Permitted Development schemes you are not required to apply for permission and as such do not incur a planning application fee. However a multiple dwelling or commercial development can cost anything up to £250,000 in planning application fees for the largest projects, and require planning contributions on top.
For reference, at the time of writing the following planning fees apply for some common types of developments in England are as follows:
Outline Planning Application - £385 per 0.1 hectares up to 2.5 hectares; and £115 per 0.1 hectare thereafter.
Extensions and Alterations to a single dwelling (Householder application)- £172
Erecting of a new dwelling - £385 per dwelling up to 50 dwellings then £115 per dwelling for each additional dwelling over 50.
Change of Use from an existing dwelling to two or more dwellings - £385 per dwelling up to 50 dwellings then £115 per dwelling for each additional dwelling over 50.
Material Change of use to a building other than dwelling - £385
Erection of commercial building – These vary by floor area as follows:
- Up to 40m2 - £195
- 40m2 to 75m2 - £385
- 75m2 to £3750m2 - £385 per 75m2 or part thereof
- Over 3750m2 - £19,049 plus £115 per 75m2 or part thereof in excess of 3750m2
A full list of fees for various planning applications including listed building consent can be found here.
It is always a good idea to contact your Architect to discuss the appropriate type of planning application and supporting material that best suits your project needs.
The good news is that although VAT will be applied to the cost of producing the application reports, drawings and supporting material, all planning fees are VAT Exempt.
Additional costs to consider
The cost of obtaining planning permission is not governed solely by the application fees to the local authority and it is worth bearing in mind that additional costs are usually necessary to obtain planning permission.
All planning permissions need accompanying drawings in order to graphically convey to the planning officers (and the consultees, neighbouring properties, general public etc.) the nature of the proposed development. At the very least this will include a site location plan showing where the development site is.
The majority of full planning applications will be accompanied with a full set of planning drawings which will show the planning officers exactly what it is you intend to build or otherwise alter. Fees for planning drawings will vary depending on the type and scale of development so you should consult an Architect at an early stage to obtain an estimate of Architects fees for planning services. These usually include scheme design, planning drawings, a design and access statement if required and submission on your behalf.
Planning officers can request submission of optional consultant reports relevant to the specific site, or type of development. These can include a Habitat Survey, Flood-risk Assessment or Environmental Impact Assessment to name but a few. Your Architect should be able to advise which reports may be required and recommend suitable consultants to undertake the service. From this early stage discussion, you can get some idea of how much investment is required prior to obtaining your planning approval and therefore how much is planning permission as a total project cost.
If you have not yet chosen your Architect, then the blog post on How to choose an Architect will be a must read to help you to make a great choice of Architect.