Thursday 13 October 2016

Obtaining Permission to Replace your Timber Windows

When looking to replace your timber windows it is important to check whether you need to obtain planning permission for the work to be carried out.

If you live in a conservation area, your property is listed, or you are making changes to the outline of the property you are likely to require planning permission before installing new windows. If in doubt it is always worth checking with your local council.

Listed Buildings

The majority of listed buildings are Grade II listed. Grade II listed buildings require consent for any change to the external fabric of the building. The council will be most interested in maintaining the aesthetic appearance and materials used in the windows.

For more information and advice on replacing your windows in a listed building, view our listed building guide.

Conservation Areas

Conservation areas listed under Article 4 Preservation have a restriction on the ‘Permitted Development’ rights at the property. This means that formal planning consent is a legal requirement for any changes to the windows and doors.

However, there is more flexibility in what can be done with properties in Article 4 areas, compared to listed buildings. As long as the replacement windows are the same as the previous windows they will normally be approved by planning officers.

Properties in Conservation areas that are not listed under Article 4 Preservation generally retain their ‘Permitted Development’ rights. This means that new windows can be installed as long as they are ‘in keeping’ with the property or area.

Building Regulations

Replacement windows have been included within building regulations in England and Wales since April 2002. These building regulations consist of rules related to safety, escape routes, and ventilation.

Unless you live in a listed building, if you are replacing the complete timber window, and therefore going back to the brick work, you will require a certificate to confirm that the windows comply with building regulations. A certificate will be required by your purchaser’s solicitors if you decide to sell your property. It is therefore important to check that the company carrying out the work can comply to these regulations. One way to ensure this is to check whether they are FENSA registered.

However, if your building is over 18 metres from the ground, FENSA will not issue a certificate. If you live in a property which is over 18 metres high, you will need to contact your local council to arrange for Local Authority Building Inspectors to certify that the windows comply with building regulations.

Applying for Planning Permission

When applying for planning permission you will often be required to submit detailed drawings of the new windows. At The Sash Window Workshop we can provide you with these detailed, technical drawings once you have committed to placing an order with us.

All our replacement timber windows are bespoke and manufactured in our workshop in Berkshire to meet your individual requirements. This means that we can manufacture timber windows to meet the strict planning regulations and requirements for listed buildings and buildings in conservation areas.

To obtain a free, no obligation site survey and quotation to replace your timber windows, contact us on: 01344 868 668.