What is Building Control? All you need to know [UK] What is Building Control? All you need to know [UK]

Building Control

 

“The penalty will probably be yours if standards are not met!”

This information is for domestic/residential buildings only.

 

Ensuring that work taking place complies with building regulations. Meaning that the work in altering, erecting or extending a domestic building must meet relevant technical requirements of the Building Regulations as well as not lowering the compliance of the already existing fabric, services and fittings.

 

Before you begin your residential project, you will appoint a Building Control Inspector to check your building plans and make regular visits to inspect your site at different stages of the project. The Building Inspector will ensure the work being completed complies with the Building Regulations Approved Documents (more on this below). 

 

You can go directly to the Local Authority to carry out these visits. However, we would recommend choosing an Approved/Private Inspector (AI) as they tend to be more available and more efficient than the Local Authority (LA). 

 

It is the AI’s responsibility to check that the work is in compliance with the building regulations. Your builder or contractors are responsible for carrying out the work to meet the building regulations; however, the penalty will probably be yours if standards are not met. 

 

Don’t get Building Control confused with Planning Permission which is an entirely separate thing altogether. Read more about Planning Permission here.

Building Control

 

“The penalty will probably be yours if standards are not met!”

This information is for domestic/residential buildings only.

 

Ensuring that work taking place complies with building regulations. Meaning that the work in altering, erecting or extending a domestic building must meet relevant technical requirements of the Building Regulations as well as not lowering the compliance of the already existing fabric, services and fittings.

 

Before you begin your residential project, you will appoint a Building Control Inspector to check your building plans and make regular visits to inspect your site at different stages of the project. The Building Inspector will ensure the work being completed complies with the Building Regulations Approved Documents (more on this below). 

 

You can go directly to the Local Authority to carry out these visits. However, we would recommend choosing an Approved/Private Inspector (AI) as they tend to be more available and more efficient than the Local Authority (LA). 

 

It is the AI’s responsibility to check that the work is in compliance with the building regulations. Your builder or contractors are responsible for carrying out the work to meet the building regulations; however, the penalty will probably be yours if standards are not met. 

 

Don’t get Building Control confused with Planning Permission which is an entirely separate thing altogether. Read more about Planning Permission here.

Building Control process:

 

The first step is for the approved Inspector to submit an ‘Initial Notice’ to the Local Authority. The LA will check all the details and then register the work into the national database. 

 

Submitting the Initial Notice should take 5 working days. Therefore, it is essential that building work should not start until the submission of the Initial Notice has been approved. 

 

There is a fee that is to be submitted with the application. The fee is based on the complexity of work, the cost of work, and the site’s location. Most Building Control companies have a set fee structure outline. However, we would be happy to request an official quote from an AI on your behalf. 

 

A ‘Plans Certificate’ can be requested if you wish. This certificate proves that all plans and details have been checked and accepted to comply with Building Regulations.

 

What documents do you need for Building Control?

 

You will need drawings and specifications such as; floor plans, detailed sections, construction specifications, thermal requirements… But these can all be supplied by the architects here at Aura Architecture.

 

For new builds or extensions, a location plan (scale no less than 1:1250) also needs to be sent to Building Control to pass on to the Local Authority. The Initial Notice can’t be processed without the location plan of the proposed work.

Inspections:

 

You need to inform Building Control when critical stages of your building work are being reached. These are stages such as; the works commencing, the foundations being laid, the drains going in, etc. At these stages, inspections will be carried out by your AI. 

 

Usually, your builder or project manager should contact the AI, as they will know the most about what stage the building work is at. 

 

However, we recommend that you keep tabs on this because, as we said before, 

“The penalty will probably be yours if standards are not met!”

How do you know if you are meeting Building Regulations:

 

The ‘Approved Documents’ are a set of particular documents outlining all the elements needed to achieving building regulations conformance. Luckily for you, we are very familiar with these!! 

The categories are as follows:

  • Part A: Structure
  • Part B: Fire Safety
  • Part C: Site preparation and resistance to contaminants and moisture
  • Part D: Toxic Substances
  • Part E: Resistance to the passage of sound
  • Part F: Ventilation
  • Part G: Sanitation, hot water safety and water efficiency
  • Part H: Drainage and Waste Disposal
  • Part J: Combustion appliances and fuel storage systems
  • Part K: Protection from falling, collision and impact
  • Part L: Conservation of fuel and power
  • Part M: Access to and use of buildings
  • Part N: Glazing Safety (Withdrawn)
  • Part P: Electrical Safety
  • Part Q: Security
  • Part R: Physical infrastructure for high-speed electronic communications networks.
  • Regulation 7: Materials and workmanship 

 

To achieve building regulations approval, you may need these services on top of Building Control:

(But don’t worry, we work closely with several consultants who can provide these services)

-Acoustic Testing – Air Testing – Energy Assessments – Fire Risk Assessments – Access Audits – Security Audits

 

 These regulations do not cover on-site Health and Safety requirements. You have a responsibility as the client under: ‘CDM – Construction (Design and Management) Regulations 2015’ to meet H&S requirements. You can read more about CDM Regs here.

 

Completion:

 

At the completion of your project, Building Control will issue a ‘Final Certificate’ to the Local Authority and a copy for you, the client, if the works have been completed to a satisfactory level. This should be done within 8 weeks of occupation. If your AI was not happy with the level of work achieved, they would report to the Local Authority who have enforcement powers. 

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  • Avatar Jennifer VP ★★★★★ a year ago
    Overall great design and exceptional value for money. As a first time consumer of architectural services on what was a large project I can not emphasise enough the value add that we got from Ben, Sophie and the wider Aura team. The effort … More and detail put into the design and specification of works along with significant assistance in project management was commendable. As the project evolved it was crystal clear that we saved a significant amount of time and money as a result of having a comprehensive package and most importantly we got what we wanted on budget. Expectations were exceeded in terms of meeting deadlines. Accommodating design changes and assistance with the planning process was also first rate. I would highly recommend the team and look forward to working with them on the next project.
  • Avatar Harry Bucknell ★★★★★ a year ago
    Couldn't recommend Ben and his team more. We were in a really tricky position with our building project and Ben navigated us safely out of it. Superb guidance, great technical knowledge and what I really valued the most was the communication. … More Always got back to me promptly which makes a real difference when stress levels are high. Thanks Aura!
  • Avatar Louise Hancock ★★★★★ a year ago
    Aura Homes is a highly professional firm of architects that always have the clients best interests at hart. The quality of their plans and drawings is superb and their turn-around when making amendments well within expected timelines. … More For bespoke projects, their research and recommendations (both in terms of quality and costs) is superb.

What is Building Control? All you need to know [UK] Ben Richards
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