What Building Regulation Do I Need for A Home Extension

What Building Regulation Do I Need for A Home Extension

Most of the home extension projects need approval under the building regulations UK. Here’s our quick guide on UK building regulations (section-wise breakup) that you need to know for your extensions.

Even if your home extension project doesn’t require planning permission, you may need to furnish approval from building regulations.

Building regulations are a set of regulations that ensure that the new structure whether its conversion, alteration or extension is sound, energy-efficient and completely safe.

After you have finalized your home extension layout plan by the architect or best contractor in UK, it’s time to get them submitted and approved by the local building control team.

The approval should ideally be taken before commencing the construction work.

Have a look at the complete guide to building regulations with detailing on every section such as flooring, foundation, walls, ventilation etc for home extensions.

But before moving ahead, let’s understand what is a home extension and its benefits.

What is Home Extension?

A home extension is an excellent way to create much-needed space in the home for your family to live, love, and grow. It is extending your home space outwardly to create functional space.

It is a fantastic way to have the space you crave without the stress and inconvenience of moving out. Apart from retaining your property, an extension can increase the value of your home by more than 10%.

The Benefits of Home Extensions

  • It is a cheaper way of creating functional space in your home
  • A properly planned conversion will give you a practical storage solution
  • It increases the value of your home
  • It saves you the cost of moving
  • Reduce your energy bills

What are building regulations?

Building regulations for home extensions in UK are a set of regulations or standards that are designed to ensure that the end result delivers a safe, healthy and energy-efficient home.

Even if you don’t require planning permission for carrying out certain extensions or conversions, complying with building regulations is a must.

Starting from foundations, floors, roofs to stairs, sire-escape etc every section has some specific set of standards that need to be met for every building.

Unlike the main aim of planning permission is to seek approval for constructing development of some kind, building regulations are meant to get these details (plan/layouts) verified and approved for compliance.

These details are checked by an approved inspector or a local building authority.

What if your home extension does not comply with building regulations?

Complying with building regulations is a legal requirement, failing to comply would mean that an enforcement notice would be served in case the new home extension does not comply with the building regulations UK.

The enforcement notice has the full authority to question the project and has the right to remove the work as well. An appeal can be made by the owner if he/she feels that the decision is incorrect.

Apart from that, if the new home extension does not meet the regulations it may render the insurances null and void. This may negatively impact your prospects of selling your property.

Building Regulations UK for Home Extensions Plan

Here are the key building regulations that you need to comply for your home extension project.

1.       Building Regulations for Foundation

Foundations are the prime elements of any building that safely transmit the load of the building to the ground. The foundations are critical for providing a sound structural stability to the building.

Depending on the requirements, the foundations can be:

  • Shallow-Fill: Here the minimum thickness of load transfer to soil is provided
  • Deep-Fill: Here the trench is filled completely.

Depending on the practicability and ground conditions, the fill varies from project to project.   

There are several other factors that need to be taken into account while designing the building foundation. These are :

  • Type of Soil
  • Load-bearing capacity of the land
  • Adjacent structures
  • Trees
  • Drains and sewers
  • Ground conditions
  • Landfill sites
  • Type of the new structure (extension)

3 separate visits are conducted by the Building Control Officers i.e. at the time of start, excavation and then, at the time of concreting.  Their word is final in all respects and may sometimes override your approved designs.

2.       Building Regulations for Ground Floors

The main function of every floor is to provide support to the room’s contents as well as the user’s weight.

Apart from this, it is important that the ground floor must offer thermal insulation and pose resistance to ground moisture.

The floors in the UK are majorly constructed as the solid floor, suspended timber floor and suspended concrete floor that uses pre-casted concrete planks.

The floors should be equipped with DPM (damp proof membrane) and should be thermally insulated.

The joists sizes, beam spans calculations must be done by a structural engineer and should be included in the plan submitted for approval

For contaminated grounds such as those contaminated with gases such as radon, these areas need to be well ventilated.

An additional gas membrane would be required to stop these harmful gases from entering the building and harming the structure.

Read More: What Are The Building Regulations for Loft Conversion?

3.        Building Regulations: For Ground Level walls

A substructure may be required to be constructed below the ground level depending upon the foundation. The main walls (above the ground) or superstructure would be built on this.

The main objective of building a substructure is to provide adequate support to the superstructure. This below-ground brick and mortar structure should be resistant to frost as well as underground sulphates.

4.       Building Regulations for walls

The main walls or the external walls of the home extension should be all-weather proof which means they should be able to resist whatever weather throw at them.

The walls should add to building’s structural integrity as well as minimize heat-loss. The strength of the cavity walls depends on the corrosion resistance ability of the wall ties that should be inserted at the right spacing.

This will help holding the two leaves together in a better way and aids in thermal bridging.

For internal walls, they can be stud partitions or load-bearing when structural integrity is the main consideration.

Whatever is the choice; the internal walls should comply with fire resistance and sound insulation regulations. Additional strict measures may be required in case of multi-storyed buildings.

5.       Building Regulations for structural openings

After the newly constructed home extension has been made water-proof, the normal structural opening is usually made through the exiting main/external walls.

This is done by removing existing window opening or French door ensuring that the load on existing lintel is not increased. Normally no extra support is needed.

But, in case a wide and new opening is required, additional support would be required. This is usually done by using steel beams.

The beams are installed as per the calculations done by the structural engineer and would likely be mentioned in the drawings.

These structural components such as timber or steel need to be fire proof so as to give then an additional resistance of at least 30 minutes to fire breakout.

6.       Building Regulations for Upper floors

Apart from accommodating furniture, internal walls and occupants, floors play a vital role in providing rigidity to the walls and making the structure lateral resistant.

Your structural engineer or home extension builder in UK will specify the type of floor, ceiling joists long with correct spacings and spans in the layout plan.

Along with these, soundproofing and fire resistance should be also be compliant with building regulations.

7.       Building Regulations for roofs

Along with dimensions, spacings and spans of the roof members, the UK building regulation also demands compliance to type/quality of timber used and specifications of steel beams used for roof structures.

According to the regulations, the roof coverings such as slates, tiles or flat roof membranes should be weather proof as well as should be appropriate for the roof pitch.

A breather membrane underlay is also desired to ensure correct levels of insulation and ventilation.

Proper flues must be designed to make sure that the combustion gases escape safely.

8.       Building Regulations for windows and doors

The building regulations UK for windows and doors cover compliance to everything starting from ventilation, thermal efficiency, fire-safety to guard rails, glazing safety, security and sound insulation.

Suitable guard rails are required in case of French windows or balconies.

9.       Building Regulations for ventilation

The home extension should be well ventilated for ensuring proper health.

While inserting a new wall, proper care should be taken that so that it should not impact the ventilation of the other rooms.

Adequate extract ventilation should be provided for bathrooms, kitchens, utility room or toilets to reduce the congestion and condensation levels as well as remove smells.

TEL Constructions- The most trusted and professional home extension builder in UK

Home extension is a perfect solution to address your space issues. It not only adds to the aesthetics but also increase the value of your property.

Having home extension plans but unsure about the UK building regulations compliance?

We, at TEL Constructions are the UK’s most trusted, professional and reputed home extension builder since 2011.

Our skilled and in-house extension experts ensure a seamless transition between your current one to the space of your dreams with 100% compliance with building regulations. A space you’ve always desired!

Call us at 020 8158 4006 or message us today for a free quote today!