Building control applications
Last Updated: 21 December 2023
The building control process
What you need to do to get your project through building control.
- Check if building control applies for the work you want to do.
- Make a building control application.
- Check our fees and how to make payment
- Contact us 48 hours before starting your building work and to arrange site visits so our surveyor can inspect the work as it progresses.
- After the completion inspection, if work meets the requirements of Building Regulations, we will issue either a confirmation notice or a completion certificate.
If you are doing building work yourself, you need to know about the building regulatory system. You are responsible for making sure that the work complies with the building regulations.
If you employ a builder they are usually responsible for making sure that their work complies with building regulations.
It's illegal to not tell us about your building work. You might have to correct the work or pay a fine if you do not tell us about it.
These projects are 'building work' and building regulations would apply:
- putting up a new building or extending a building
- installing or extending services or fittings that are controlled under the regulations
- alteration projects involving work which temporarily or permanently affect the ongoing compliance of the building, service or fitting with the requirements relating to structure, fire, or access to and use of buildings
- putting insulation into a cavity wall
- underpinning foundations
- work affecting the thermal elements, energy status or energy performance of a building
Before starting work you should look at Regulation 3 of the Building Regulations for the full meaning of 'building work'.
If you are unsure please contact us.
You can find out if you need to apply for building control using the Planning Portal interactive house.
Building control exemptions
Building Regulations allow some work to be done without going through the Building Regulation process. It is advisable to contact our building control team to find out if the work you are doing is exempt.
Breaches of building regulations
If you do not follow the building control procedures or carry out building work that doesn’t comply with building regulations, you will have breached the regulations.
We have a duty to enforce the building regulations.
In most cases we try to do this informally. If informal enforcement doesn’t work we have enforcement powers that we can use:
- we can prosecute in the Magistrates' Court where an unlimited fine may be imposed (sections 35 and 35A of the Building Act 1984). Prosecution is possible up to two years after the completion of the offending work. This action will usually be taken against the person carrying out the work (builder, installer or main contractor)
- we can serve an enforcement notice (called a ‘section 36 enforcement notice') on the building owner requiring alteration or removal of work which contravenes the regulations (section 36 of the 1984 Act). If the owner does not comply with the notice we have the power to undertake the work and recover the costs from the owner
- a Section 36 enforcement notice cannot be served on you after the 12 months from the date of completion of the building work
- We can’t take enforcement action under section 36 if the work which you have carried out is in accordance with your full plans application that we approved or failed to reject
You can apply for a Regularisation Certificate if you have carried out work without: Authorisation, submitting any plans or giving us notice.
We will carry out inspections to find out if your work complies with Building Regulations. This might involve: Opening up of works, carrying out tests and sampling of materials.
We will then let you know if any more work is needed to meet building regulation standards. When the work has been done, or if no further work is necessary, we will issue a Regularisation Certificate. There is no legal requirement to apply for a Regularisation Certificate but there is a legal requirement to comply with Building Regulations. We can’t accept Regularisation applications for electrical work.
Appeals against building regulations enforcement
An appeal against a Section 36 notice may be made to a Magistrates’ Court under section 102 of the Building Act.
Apply now through the Planning Portal.
- simple quick and user friendly
- step by step guidance and supporting information
- make safe, secure online payments
Applications can still be made via submit-a-plan.com.
You can also make an application using a paper form.
There are a number of ways of telling us about building work.
Application for building control approval with full plans
Suitable for domestic or commercial works and includes plans, specifications and sometimes structural calculations.
Full plans applications should include:
- one completed copy of the Building Regulations Application for approval with Full Plans (DOC / 128KB)
- one completed copy of the Building Regulations Application for approval with Full Plans, Notes and Checklist (DOC / 220KB)
- one copy of the detailed drawings of the proposed building work to a scale of not less than 1:100
- one copy of a site or location plan showing proposal site boundaries and position of public sewers, to a scale of not less than 1:1250
- Full plans payment
Building notice application
For people experienced in construction doing uncomplicated domestic work.
Building notice applications should include:
- one completed copy of a Building Regulation Building Notice application form (DOC / 154KB)
- one completed copy of the Building Regulations Building Notice, Notes and Checklist (DOC / 142KB)
- a site plan showing the proposed site boundaries and the position of the public sewers drawn to a scale of not less than 1:1250 (if the proposal is for a new building or an extension)
- Building notice payment
When you have carried out work to your property and were then told that you needed approval. They are only applicable to work carried out on, or after, 11 November 1985.
Regularisation applications should include:
- Building Regularisation Certificate application form (DOC / 136KB)
- Building Regularisation application, Notes and Checklist (DOC / 123KB)
- Regularisation, Relevant Requirement Information sheet (DOC / 165KB)
- a block plan to a scale of not less than 1:1250
- scale plans and particulars indicating the works carried out and the location in the buildings where they have been done
- additional plans (as necessary) showing any extra work needed to make the works carried out complying with the regulations
- Regularisation payment
A person who is required by Regulation 12 to give a building notice or an application for building control approval with full plans for carrying out building work shall, not more than five days after that work has been completed, give the local authority notice which complies with Regulation 16 paragraph (4A).
If you don't keep you building control documents safe there may be a problem when you come to sell your property.
Your building control completion certificate or confirmation notice are extremely important documents, they should be kept in a safe place.
When you come to sell your property you will need to provide evidence that any alterations have been done in accordance with building regulations.
You can get a copy of building control documents.