Is Your Building Work Authorised?
Photo credit Le Lay Architects
We have recently been approached on several occasions by home owners who have previously undertaken some form of construction works to their property without obtaining the necessary certificates ensuring compliance with Building Regulations.
With several exceptions (ie greenhouses, ancillary/ agricultural buildings) all building works must comply with building regulations and consequently, undertaking unauthorised work can result in severe consequences further down the line. Lack of authorisation usually comes to light at the sale of a property when the solicitors request the necessary paperwork. If not produced, this would likely result in the prospective buyer either reducing their offer (to account for any rectification costs) or withdrawing their offer altogether due to the uncertainty. In the worst case the owner could be prosecuted and served with an enforcement notice by the Council.
As architects we will always recommend obtaining sign off where appropriate. If you aren’t sure whether your proposed works require Building Control certification, please give us a call and we would be more than happy to advise.
The Solution to Authorised Works
However, if you have already undertaken unauthorised works to your property there is the option to obtain Building Control approval retrospectively, through a process called ‘regularisation’- to regularise the unauthorised works. This is done by applying to the Local Authority for a Certificate of Regularisation.
Applying for a Certificate of Regularisation
This application provides the Local Authority Building Control Department a means of inspecting the works carried out and to ascertain, as far as reasonably possible, whether the work complies with Building Regulation requirements. This application comes with a fee ranging from £100-£1000 for assessing building works costing up to £100,000 (regularisation for works above this amount will need to be discussed directly with the council). There may be additional costs involved for obtaining the necessary electrical and gas safety compliance certification and for intrusive opening up works should Building Control consider it appropriate to view the construction. Once Building Control are satisfied that the works fully comply with current Building Regulations they will issue their Certificate of Regularisation.
If you have completed works without obtaining Building Control approval or fear unauthorised works were previously undertaken to your property, we can help put your mind at ease. Why not give us a call?