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New planning rules mean high street shops can change to houses

Heavily trailed announcements suggest that conversions to housing will become much easier following new rules from the Government.

These new rules are expected to be in place by September this year and include regulation changes such as:

  • A wider range of commercial buildings will be allowed to change to residential use without the need for a planning application
  • Builders will no longer need a normal planning application to demolish and rebuild vacant and redundant residential and commercial buildings if they are rebuilt as homes
  • Property owners will be able to build additional space above their properties via a fast-track approval process, subject to neighbour consultation

These announcements have caused much discussion in the industry with many architects and planners feeling the changes could have a negative impact on the high street owing to the potential loss of retail space in town centres.

Do you need planning advice or are you looking to convert or repurpose a redundant building?

Contact our Planning team today on 01228 900949 or email