Navigating Permitted Development Rights (PDR)


The slow-moving world of planning has suddenly sparked into life for property developers.

The rules are changing, so here’s a crib sheet explaining where they are now.

The problem is MPs may vote to change the rules again while developers are stuck in the planning stage, upsetting budgets and triggering wholesale changes to building design

1. What are permitted development rights? 

2. What’s allowed under PDRs?

3. Article 4 directions

4. Different rules for different places

5. Checking your project meets PDR rules

6. PDR and planning stats

7. Latest PDR updates

8. Neighbours and PDR objections

9. How do lenders view PDR?

10. PDR for developers FAQ

Source: Conwy Council

Which developments are allowed under PDR?

Certainly, extending a home within certain limits is something allowed under PDR, providing the property is not listed, in a protected area or in a neighbourhood subject to an Article 4 direction.

It’s a good idea to speak to a local architect or the planning authority before breaking ground on a project to make sure PDR applies.

What is an Article 4 direction?

Basically, an Article 4 direction is a legal power granted to a local authority to suspend PDR, so any development must apply for planning permission.

What’s the biggest extension allowed under PDR?

If you have a detached house, you can extend the property by up to eight metres (26.25 feet) from the rear wall and four metres (13.1 feet) high, while smaller homes are limited to extend six metres (19.6 feet) out and three metres (9.8 feet) high.

Is prior approval needed for PDR developments?

Sometimes developments need prior approval, but they tend to involve change of use, demolition, agricultural buildings and phone masts rather than homes.

Do PDR expire?

PDR don’t expire but if your building has been altered or extended in the past, you may have lost some rights. For instance, if a home has already been extended, only a proportion of PDR may be left for further extension.

Should I include details of the PDR process when asking for funding?

Yes. The details should be included in a funding application. The lender will want to see you are on top of the necessary planning approvals you need for the development and how they impact your project.