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Building Regulations

Article 236 [ added on 21-09-2009, updated on 12-08-2010 ]

It is a legal requirement which can be lead to prosecution for an infringement.

Complying with Building Regulations is a separate matter from Planning Permission. It is important to understand Building Regulations as you are responsible for making sure that the work complies if you are carrying out building work personally.

If you are employing a builder, the responsibility could be shared. If you are the owner of the building, it is ultimately you who may be served with an enforcement notice if the work does not comply with the regulations.

Before starting any work make sure you have the required permissions.

Types of building work that should comply with Building Regulations

•    The erection or extension of a building.
•    The installation or extension of a service or fitting which is controlled under the regulations.
•    Insertion of insulation into a cavity wall.
•    An alteration project in which the work will temporarily or permanently affect the ongoing compliance of the building (i.e. affect requirements relating to structure, access, fire safety or the use of the building). Check with your Local Authority.
•    Underpinning of the foundations of a building.
•    Double glazing, electrical installations, boilers.
•    Underpinning of the foundations of a building. - A process usually requiring specialist input.

The works themselves should meet the relevant technical requirements in the Building Regulations and they should not make other fabric, services and fittings less compliant than they previously were, or dangerous. As an example if you replace external windows or doors the building should comply to at least the same degree as it did before or where it exceeded the standards, not be reduced below the standards in relation to:

•    Means of escape from fire.
•    Air supply for combustion appliances and their flues.

A replacement window or door should also satisfy the requirements for energy conservation and ventilation.

Building Regulations may also apply to changes of use to existing buildings, in particular conversions to habitable use.

Where do I get Building Regulations approval

A Local Authority Building Control Service or an Approved Inspector’s Building Control Service

You can contact your Local Authority Building Control Service through your district or borough council. Approved inspectors are private sector companies or practitioners and are approved for the purpose of carrying out the Building Control Service as an alternative to your Local Authority.

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