Hounslow Council

Building control - how to get building regulations approval

There are two methods of applying for approval of building projects.

  • For domestic alterations and extensions you can submit a Building Notice giving brief details of your proposals

  • Works to shops, offices, factories, hotels and boarding houses, new buildings fronting onto private streets or building over or close to public sewers must be made by the Full Plans route

Domestic alterations and extensions

This should be submitted 48 hours before the work starts together with the statutory charge and any drawings and details. Building Notices should be used with care for complex projects and we can still ask for additional information, plans and particulars to be submitted.

Also if you wish to obtain formal approval for domestic works before the work begins you can submit a Full Plans application. Decisions can take up to five weeks. Once you have received Full Plans approval you can submit a Commencement Notice 48 hours before the work starts. The work is then inspected on site.

Approved documents available on the Planning Portal website (see link on right) offer practical guidance on how to comply with the building regulations and cover the following aspects of construction:

  • Part A Structural stability

  • Part B Fire safety and means of escape

  • Part C Dampproofing

  • Part D Toxic substances

  • Part E Soundproofing

  • Part F Ventilation

  • Part G Hygiene

  • Part H Drainage and waste disposal

  • Part J Combustion appliances and fual storage systems

  • Part K Stairs and guarding

  • Part L Heat loss (conservation of fuel and power)

  • Part M Access and use of buildings (including access for disabled people)

  • Part N Regulation 7 (materials and workmanship)

Building Regulation approval under the Building Regulations 2000 is entirely separate from the process of obtaining Planning Permission, which may be required for any building work regardless of whether the scheme is controllable or exempt under the Building Regulations.

Contact the planning office for details or email questions to: planningcomments@hounslow.gov.uk

The majority of domestic work, which requires Building Regulations approval, falls into the following categories, and constitutes 'Notifiable Work’:

  • The erection of a new building or the extension of an existing building e.g. a kitchen extension or loft conversion (Some "extensions" are exempt from the Building Regulations).

  • Structural alterations to an existing building e.g. underpinning, formation of a through lounge, partial removal of chimney breasts, installing replacement windows and glazed doors.

  • Changing the use of an existing building e.g. converting a house to flats.

  • The provision of new drainage or the extension or alteration of drainage facilities e.g. providing a w.c under the stairs.

Domestic electrical installations e.g. re-wiring, electrical alterations in kitchens, bathrooms etc.

Should you be in any doubt as to whether your proposals would require consent, please do not hesitate to contact Building Control:

E-mail: buildingcontrol@hounslow.gov.uk.

Buildings exempt from Building Regulations?

It may be necessary before proceeding to contact both the Building Control and Planning Services with details of your proposals. They will then confirm if the work is exempt.

Some types of domestic work are exempt from the requirements of the Building Regulations. These include:

Detached buildings

A detached single storey building, having a floor area not exceeding 30m2, which contains no sleeping accommodation and is a building:

  • no point of which is less than 1 metre from the boundary of its curtilage; or

  • which is constructed substantially of non-combustible material e.g. a detached, brick built garage

  • A detached building, having a floor area not exceeding 15m2, which contains no sleeping accommodation e.g. a greenhouse/garden shed


The extension of a building by the addition at ground level of:

  • a conservatory*, porch, covered yard or covered way; or

  • a carport open on at least two sides

  • where, the floor area does not exceed 30m2

In the case of a porch or conservatory* any glazing should meet the requirements of the Building Regulations. (i.e. glazing in most doors and adjacent windows and in windows with a cill level less than 800mm above floor level should be in a safety glass). Any electrical installation in an exempt conservatory is still controllable under Building Regulations and requires notification.

*Note, conservatories must have a transparent or translucent roof, be unheated and remain separated from the existing house.

Even though your proposals may be exempt from the Building Regulations you may still require Planning Permission. This has to be applied for separately.

Contact us

Building Control Section
Borough Planning Department
Civic Centre
Lampton Road

Tel: 020 8583 5454
E-mail: buildingcontrol@hounslow.gov.uk