Building Regulations and Notifiable Work
The UK building regulations consist of a body of documents that seek to outline minimum standards of building design and quality. They cover critical aspects of construction including Building Structure, Fire safety, Sound Proofing, Drainage, Ventilation, Heat Loss, Disabled Access, Electrical Safety etc. Generally, The Building Regulations ensure that construction and installation works meet current safety requirements and that they are fit for purpose and do not impact negatively on surrounding structures. This will impact on design, workmanship and material types used.
Generally, compliance with the regulations are enforced by the building control department of your local borough through both assessment of designs at the planning stage and regular site inspections at key milestones in the construction phase. These inspections result in you receiving a completion certificate that will be vital if you wish to sell the property in future.
Any notifiable work must be registered with the local borough prior to commencement of the works and the applicable inspections and/or full plans assessment fees paid. For a loft conversion or small extension these would typically be in the region of £500 - £1000 however charges do vary across boroughs.
It is also possible to utilise the services of a private firm to carry out the registration and inspection process. These council approved inspectors offer identical services for a cost usually comparable to the council charges.
Examples of notifiable work are: New buildings, Loft conversions, Extensions, Chimney breast removals, Roofing; Drainage; Electrical work
Internet based general guide
You can visit www.planningportal.gov.uk for an interactive general guide on planning requirements and restrictions as well as when and how The Building Regulations are applied.