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Government green lights houses to be split into flats without planning permission: winers and losers

House into two flats with no planning permission
House into two flats

The government is thinking about scrapping the need for planning permission if you want to turn your house into two flats ( split into flats ). Chancellor Jeremy Hunt mentioned this plan in the Autumn Statement, aiming to cut bureaucracy and increase new home numbers. It's called a 'permitted development right,' meaning you can do it without permission as long as the building's appearance stays the same. Some like the idea, thinking it could help with housing shortages, but others worry it might change neighbourhoods without residents having a say. Property experts are weighing in on whether it's a good move.

What's the plan?

The government might let property owners turn houses into flats without needing permission, aiming to boost home supply. It's a 'permitted development right' as long as the building's look doesn't change.

Why the controversy?

Some think it's a great way to provide more homes, but others fear it could alter communities without local approval. Property experts are discussing the pros and cons, with concerns about parking issues and potential impacts on neighbourhood vibes.

What are permitted development rights?

These rights let you make significant home changes without planning permission, set by the central government. The rules differ across the UK, and local authorities can tweak them. They're seen as a way to avoid the hassles of a full planning application.

Who might benefit?

Homeowners, landlords, and developers could profit by converting houses into flats and selling or renting them out. The move could offer more options for renters and first-time buyers, potentially easing housing shortages.

Any downsides?

Critics worry about the impact on larger homes, potential overdevelopment, and the quality of converted flats. Concerns include a lack of family-sized homes and the need for careful regulation to avoid issues.

When will this happen?

The proposal is under consultation and could be in place by 2024. However, there are concerns about the government's track record in maintaining quality standards in similar projects.

In a nutshell, the government is considering a change that could make it easier to turn houses into flats without permission. Supporters see it as a solution to housing shortages, but critics raise concerns about neighbourhood changes and potential drawbacks. The decision is still under discussion, with details expected in 2024.


Ape head mortgage advisor
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