Whether you’re making internal alterations to your home or renovating an older property, you must make sure that all building work meets the current Building Regulations. Depending on the type and extent of the work, even installing a new kitchen or bathroom could require Building Regulations approval from your local authority.
This isn’t the same thing as planning permission, where you would submit plans for a new development for approval, which could involve constructing, converting, or extending a building. This type of application is for a professional to check the details of your planned work – typically limited to internal alterations – to confirm compliance with Building Regulations.
Minor works are unlikely to need approval, but anything that affects load-bearing walls, staircases, chimneys, and utilities (electrics, plumbing, and gas) might. The person responsible for the work is also responsible for ensuring legal compliance with health and safety regulations. If you don’t, not only could there be a safety risk, but you also may have to undo the work and pay a fine.
Here’s a quick guide to what you need to know about Building Regulations for renovations before you start your renovation project, and how our ABC+ Warranty could help you.
Some types of building work are exempt from Building Regulations, but anything listed in Regulation 3 (The Building Regulations 2010) must comply. This includes (but is not limited to):
Anything to do with electrical work, from adding new circuits and rewiring to fitting a new fuse box, must comply with Approved Document P for electrical safety.
If you’re moving, replacing, or fitting a new boiler or gas appliance, this work must comply with Approved Document J for combustion appliances and fuel storage systems. Any changes to ventilation must comply with Approved Document F.
Meanwhile, any building work that affects current drainage and waste disposal systems should comply with Approved Document H. Works concerning sanitation – including hot water supplies – must adhere to Approved Document G.
The Building Regulations in England were updated in 2022 to set new rules for energy efficiency in ventilation and insulation, power conservation, and electric vehicle charging points, so all works from June 2022 must comply with the latest laws.
Building Regulations can vary in Wales, Scotland, and Northern Ireland, so be sure to check the local laws to confirm the rules where you live.
To obtain Building Regulations approval for your renovation project, or to enquire whether your project needs approval, you can either contact your local council or choose an independent inspector – who should be registered with the Construction Industry Council (CIC).
A qualified inspector can handle the Building Regulations approval and certification on your behalf, carrying out regular inspections at key stages of your project to confirm the quality of the work. As we also provide Building Control inspections here at Architects Certificate, it can be convenient to hire our services for this purpose alongside our building warranty.
As you should be aware, changes to a building can invalidate current warranties and insurance policies, so you’ll need to either update existing policies or arrange new cover to replace the outdated terms. Any structural changes will need a new Structural Warranty, which you can apply for with us while relying on our Building Regulations inspectors to ensure compliance.
Arranging a renovation warranty before building work begins also helps to make sure that everything is done to the right standard, so you can get your completion certificate as soon as your renovation project is finished without having to carry out remedial works.
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