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    Conservatory Building Regulations

    Conservatory Building Regulations

    Almost every building installed within the UK is subject to consideration for review by the UK Building Regulations, although there can be exceptions in certain cases. This group was developed by the Government in order to make sure that homes and extensions meet the necessary safety and security requirements that make them suitable for habitation.

    This goes beyond simple security procedures such as door locks. It takes into account the materials utilised during construction, the structural integrity of the product as a whole and the ability of individual features of the structure where security is concerned. It also demands a consistent level of thermal efficiency, as well as an impressive level of durability so that your products are built to last.

    This goes as far as to monitor misuse and contamination in certain circumstances such as water supply. You may even find yourself wondering if you need building regulations for a solid roof on your conservatory. No matter what sort of home improvement you’re planning, your project will usually be subject to these same regulations, however conservatories can be exempt.

    Conservatory building regulations

    Why Do These Regulations Exist?

    The fact that Building Regulations exist is a good thing; it means that your home improvements have to be completed to a high degree of quality. In fact, one notable example is that it’s been a legal requirement since April 2012 that all uPVC window installations in the UK must be completed in compliance with current UK Building Regulations.

    Specifically, the purpose of this system is to make sure that housing in England and Wales is more energy efficient and secure, benefiting home owners by reducing heating costs, keeping customers warmer and therefore safer throughout the winter months, and finally by reducing the carbon emissions caused by subsequent reliance on heating.

    So Where Do Conservatories Fit into All of This?

    Conservatory Building Regulations can differ from other extensions and forms of home improvement. In fact, they can be exempt from this requirement under a few specific circumstances, namely when:

    • They are built at ground level and are less than 30 square metres in floor area.
    • The conservatory is separated from the house by external walls, doors or windows.
    • There is an independent heating system with separate temperature and on/off controls.
    • The glazing/any fixed electrical installations comply with building regulations.

    However, any structural opening between your new conservatory and your home will still require this approval, even when the extension itself is exempt from the regulations. This isn’t to say of course that you’re entirely on your own. Instead, there are recommended instructions in most cases. Specifically, you’re advised not to construct your new conservatory in a place that will restrict ladder access to rooms in roof or loft conversions that have been designed or designated as fire escapes. In any case, it is worth speaking to your local planning authority.

    conservatory planning permission

    What is Conservatory Planning Permission?

    Planning Permission differs from conservatory Building Regulations in that the latter regulations are designed specifically to make sure that your home extensions are suitable for the health and safety of the occupants. Planning Permission on the other hand is more concerned with the appearance of your conservatory extension, as well as the effect it has on the surrounding area.

    This is usually not an issue, as many conservatories are considered to be permissible developments. There are certain things to consider however in order to keep your conservatory in line with said planning permissions, such as conservatory size restrictions.

    This can vary quite drastically depending on the size of your existing home, so it’s worth taking into account the specific measurements you’re working with. However, generally speaking, your conservatory should not occupy more than half of the land surrounding the property. This is because you need to consider potential external structures such as sheds.

    At the same time, the range of the extension is restricted depending on the type of property you own. If you live in an attached home for instance, then the limit is three metres. On the other hand, detached properties can extend this to four metres. These conservatories cannot be more than a single storey in height however if it is being completed on a listed area.

    Neighbour Consultation Scheme

    Another point to consider is that it may be worth checking what is known as the Neighbour Consultation Scheme. Applying specifically to single-storey rear extensions, this requires you to notify the local planning authority of your construction beforehand. They will then notify any neighbours that may be affected, giving them the chance to voice their concerns should they have any. This usually involves a 21-day waiting period in which neighbours are allowed to speak.

    conservatory online prices

    What Will Your Conservatory Look Like?

    So, what are you looking for in an extension? Perhaps you’re looking to expand your kitchen space, or maybe you’d rather expand your home with a pleasant summer lounge. You can browse through a huge variety of conservatory styles with our online pricing system. The Conservatory Online Prices system provides instant online prices for conservatory designs of all kinds.

    Since they’re usually a permitted development, conservatories are a great choice of home improvement that require little hassle where permission is concerned. Here at Conservatory Online Prices though, we still always recommend speaking to a professional organisation beforehand. There’s nothing more important than gaining all the facts you need.

    Victorian Conservatories are a popular design found in homes across the country. This classic style is the face of the conservatory world, but our installers offer other designs such as Lean-To Conservatories which look great in smaller homes. On the other hand, if you’re working with a much larger space then you might want to consider P-Shaped Conservatories which combine the best of multiple styles.

    So, what are you waiting for? Start your quote with Conservatory Online Prices today.

    UK building regulations

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    Frequently Asked Conservatory Questions

    In most instances the council tax will not increase on a property unless the additions another living quarter or self-contained annex. This means the addition of a conservatory should not increase the council tax payable on a property. To be absolutely certain you can always check the government's website which gives advice on council tax.
    The main difference between a conservatory and an orangery is how the roof is constructed. A conservatory roof is over 75% glazed whereas an orangery roof has less than this amount. A conservatory also has over half of its wall space glazed whereas an orangery can include more brickwork than this.
    Yes, you can put a conservatory on the front of your house. This is because conservatories come under the category of a permitted development. As such in most instances you do not need planning permission. This applies if the area surrounding the original house is not more than 50% covered by other buildings or additions.
    There are many ways of gaining temperature control. Conservatory blinds, ventilating windows, cooling film and air conditioning to name a few. You might also want to consider replacing your conservatory roof with a tiled or solid design.
    There are many ways of keeping your conservatory warm in the Winter. If you have a small conservatory then an electric heater will suffice but those with bigger conservatories may want to look into installing underfloor heating.
    Glazing is also very important in a conservatory. Most heat can be lost through glass so ensure your conservatory glazing is thermally efficient. You can also tackle draughts or cold spots by installing conservatory blinds.
    This will largely depend on your location. You will find that certain areas have different setbacks based on the use of the building. We recommend that you check with your local council or take a look at the Goverment's Planning Portal.

    You must notify your neighbour if you want to:

    - Build on or at the boundary of your 2 properties - Work on an existing party wall or party structure - Dig below and near to the foundation level of their property
    Replacing your conservatory roof can indeed make your conservatory warmer however, this will depend on the type of roof you choose. A solid or tiled conservatory roof will offer greater insulation than a plastic or glazed roof.
    A solid roof can be put on a conservatory. There are many solid conservatory roof designs available - just ask your chosen installer for a recommendation. The majority of new-build conservatories with a solid, tiled or glazed roof will not require planning permission. They are covered under what is known as 'permitted development'. However, building regulations will apply if you want to build an extension.
    When it comes to your home improvement, it's important to have all the necessary legal documentation. The installation of a conservatory, orangery or porch does not require a FENSA registration form.
    The average life span of a uPVC conservatory is largely dependent on the quality of materials and build. Typically, a uPVC frame can last up to 25 years but some can last for decades ensuring they are well maintained.
    Planning permissions used to say that a certain percentage of roofing must be translucent in order for a conservatory to be exempt from planning permission. Changes to building regulations however, now means that you may not require planning permission for roof replacement.
    Swapping your existing conservarory roof for a tiled or solid roof replacement can be done without needing to file for planning permission. Planning permission may be required however, if the height of your extension is changed following completion.
    A conservatory is defined as a 'building that has no less than 75% of its roof area made of translucent material and no less than 50% of its total wall area made of glass.
    It is possible to convert a conservatory to an orangery but it isn't a simple process. A surveyor will need to come out and assess your property and conservatory to see if it is at first , feasible.
    Both extensions and orangeries often require planning permission and in order to satisfy requirements, a new structure will have to be built.
    If a conservatory is within two metres of a boundary, a conservatory should not be higher than three metres. It must also not extend beyond the rear wall of the original house by more than 3m if an attached house or by 4m if a detached house.
    For construction work to begin a trench will need to be excavated to a minimum depth of 600mm. A conservatory needs footings just as much as any extension does.
    Solid ground will need to found first and needs to be accepted by Building Control as being a minimum of 1 metre in standard conditions.
    Foundations will need to be dug and because conservatories are lightweight in structure, their foundation loads are usually quite low. This can often lead to the notion that shallow foundations are satisfactory however, shallow foundations are more susceptible to subsidence.

    Conservatories that are built with foundations shallower than the Building Regulations advise, are likely to encounter problems.

    Building Regulations state:

    A2. The building shall be constructed so that ground movement caused by :-
    (a) swelling, shrinkage or freezing of the subsoil; or
    (b) land-slip or subsidence (other than subsidence arising from shrinkage), in so far as the risk can be reasonably foreseen, will not impair the stability of any part of the building
    Usually, there are no planning requirements when it comes to building a conservatory to a bungalow. However, the conservatory will be subject to certain conditions so be sure to check with your local building authority or with the Government's Planning Portal to ensure your conservatory remains within these guidelines.
    When is a conservatory not a conservatory? In order for a structure to remain a permitted development (a conservatory), the build needs to comply with a number of rules. A conservatory must be ground level, must not be more than 30m2, must be thermally separated from the original building, have its own heating and have glazing in critical zones that meet Part N of the building regulations.
    An extension refers to an additional structure that is anatomically in-keeping with your main property. An extension often requires planning permission unless it is classified as permitted development and is built with opaque cavity walls and brick-based foundations. Extensions are a big home improvement and investment, needing the work of an architect.
    Conservatories or glazed extensions are perfect for those looking to add extra space on a budget. Typically, they are less of a logistical strain and in most cases do not require planning permission,
    A conservatory can be built under permitted development rights, not needing an application for planning permission. A conservatory however is subject to the limits and conditions listed here. Building a conservatory onto an extension however, will be subject to different conditions. In some cases and under the permitted development regulations, you cannot attach an extension to an already extended part of a dwelling. It has to be attached to the original walls of the dwelling house.
    Conservatories are generally much cheaper than a single-storey extension of the same size. The price difference will largely depend on size and how complex the structure is to build, as well as the quality of materials.
    A conservatory or single-story extension can be built without planning permission if: It's a maximum of 4 metres high or 3 metres high, within 2 metres of a boundary and the conservatory or extension does not cover more than half of the garden.
    From now until 2019, you can extend outwards by up to 8 metres for detached homes and 6 metres for other property types. For this, instead of applying for planning permission you will need to undergo a Neighbour Consultation Scheme.
    In most circumstances, building regulations tend to apply when you build a new extension or a very large structure to your property. However, most of the time, conservatories are exempt from building regulations when they are erected at ground level and the floor surface areas is less than 30 square metres.
    The average life expectancy of a conservatory depends on the quality of materials used as well as the installer. Generally speaking a conservatory built with uPVC window and door frames can last up to 25 - 30 years.
    It is possible to build either a conservatory or a single-storey extension without gaining planning permission if: firstly, it has a maximum height of 4 metres or 3 metres high if situated within 2 metres of an existing boundary. The conservatory itself does not exceed over half the size of the garden.
    Yes you can! Whatever the shape of your existing conservatory, you can be sure that there is a solid roof equivalent to meet your exacting requirements.
    Changing roofs from a polycarbonate to a solid roof means that building regulations will apply. Your chosen installer will be able to answer any questions you have and help with any red tape such as contacting local authorities to resolve building regulations compliance.
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