Planning Permission Guide

A basic guide to preparing and lodging a planning application. It is recommended you always use a professional.

The guide below is relevant to planning permission Scotland only.

Decide what you what.

  • What space do I need? An additional bedroom, living space, bathroom, home office, storage or enlargement to existing rooms?
  • How will you use the space, what will I be putting in the room?
  • What type of alteration best suits my requirements? Extension, loft conversion, garage conversion, garden room, porch, conservatory?
  • Do I Need Planning Permission Scotland | Project Cost EstimatorWhat can I do with my budget? Use our online cost estimators to find out what your project might cost.
  • Try putting your ideas down in a sketch it helps to see what you might end up with and can give you other ideas. If you’re not sure a good architectural service provider will be able to assist you with initial ideas.

Decided what you want? What’s next?

I do NOT need planning permission.

  • If NO planning permission is required it is recommended you obtain a certificate of lawfulness for major alterations. Find out what a certificate of lawfulness is on Do I Need Permissions certificate of lawfulness page.
  • For a certificate of lawfulness you will require a set of drawings showing your proposals your drawings should consist of,
    • A location plan with your property including boundary outlined in red.
    • Existing floor plans and elevations of your property.
    • Proposed floor plans and elevations of your property.
    • Proposed external materials and existing materials.
    • All drawings should be to a scale.
  • Once you have a set of drawings you can make your application for certificate of lawfulness, you can download the application form on your local council’s planning department website.
  • You will be required to pay a fee of £202 (from 1st November 2014).

I NEED planning permission.

  • If planning permission is required you will require a set of drawings for your project, your drawings should consist of,
  • A location plan with your property including boundary outlined in red. Any other land you own out with this should be outlined in blue.
  • Existing floor plans and elevations of your property.
  • Proposed floor plans and elevations of your property.
  • Proposed sections.
  • Proposed external materials and existing materials.
  • Additional information may be required depending on your specific project.
  • All drawings should be to a scale.
  • Once you have a set of drawings you can make your application for planning permission, you can download the application forms on your local council’s planning department website. Alternatively you can submit your proposal online. Visit your local councils website for more details.
  • You will be required to pay a fee for your application, you can find out what your fee will be using Do I Need Permissions project categories.

What happens next?

Certificate of lawfulness.

  • If you have applied for a certificate of lawfulness your application will be check for compliance with permitted development rights, if your application complies you will be issued with your certificate. This proves you did not require planning permission. You should keep your certificate in a safe place as it may be required if you sell your home.

Planning permission.

  • If you have applied for a planning permission your application will be checked and validated. You will received confirmation your application is valid.
  • The planning department will issue notification to neighbours that are required to be notified about the project.
  • The notified persons/properties will then have 28 days to comment on your proposals. You can view your planning application and comments made by others on your local council website. Visit Do I Need Permissions view planning applications in my area page.
  • Once this time period is over you will receive a decision notice.
  • Your decision notice may be subject to conditions, these conditions may require additional information to be provided prior to works starting.
  • Your planning permission is valid for 3 years, works should be started within this time period.

What if my planning permission is refused?

  • If your planning permission is refused you may have the right to appeal. You will need to have valid reasons why your proposal should be approved. Further details on appeals can be found on your local council’s website.

Obtaining planning permission does NOT allow you to build unless your project is exempt from building warrant. Have a look at Do I Need Permissions building warrant guide.