Check if you need building regulations approval
You must apply for approval for the following building works:
- The erection of a new building
- The extension of an existing building, for example, a kitchen extension or loft conversion
- Structural alterations to an existing building, for example underpinning, removal or alteration of load bearing walls, removal of a chimney
- Alterations which may affect the means of escape in case of fire, for example, changes of layout, changing the use of rooms, alterations to fire doors
- Changing the use of an existing building, for example, converting a house to flats or a shop to an office
- The extension or alteration of certain services and fittings, for example, new drainage, installing hot or cold water service, installing boilers and wood burners, replacing windows if the fitter is not a member of an appropriate competent persons scheme
- Some electrical work
- Renovating or replacing a wall, floor or roof, for example, replacing a roof, re-tiling a roof, replacing a floor, re-plastering substantial areas
- Changes to a buildings energy status. This might happen where a previously unheated space is being heated or where air conditioning is being installed.
To help you to gain building regulations approval more easily, the government have allowed certain trade bodies to self-certify their members work and to issue Building Regulations Certificates. These are called competent person schemes.
Further information is available in the following document:
Tips for using self-certified contractors:
- Always ensure the contractor is registered for the work they are undertaking, for example, if you are having a new heating system installed ensure the contractor is a registered installer not a service engineer
- Always ensure that at the end of the job the contractor issues you with a certificate confirming that the work complies with the building regulations, you may need this when you come to sell your property
- If you are in any doubt about anything, contact either the relevant trade association or contact the Building Control Team.
Works that are exempt from building regulations
The following list gives advice on exempt buildings. However, if you require written confirmation on your individual project please complete the exempt enquiry form. There is a charge of £31.50, including VAT to pay for this confirmation. This can be paid over the telephone or an online link payment will be sent to you when the enquiry form is received online.
Alternatively, download and complete the Exempt Building Enquiry form (PDF)
The works listed below are generally exempt from building regulations, although there may be exceptions in certain circumstances:
|Types of building||Description|
|Buildings not frequented by people
|Greenhouses and Agricultural Buildings ||
|Ancillary Buildings ||
|Small Detached Buildings ||
|Extensions to Buildings ||
Builders and contractors who regularly use local authority building control
Please find a List of Builders and Contractors (PDF), who prefer to work with Swindon Building Control, providing mutual knowledge in identifying and resolving constraints early, potentially saving both time and money on the project.
These are not to be considered as recommendations by the Local Authority.