Do I Need Planning Permission for a Garden Shed?

Do I Need Planning Permission for a Garden Shed?

Peer into most back gardens in the UK and you are bound to find at least one garden shed. It is an essential item for many householders, providing space to store the lawnmower, strimmer, patio equipment and much else besides.

If you don’t yet have a garden shed perhaps now is the time to consider buying one. Before you do so you’ll need to consider what size you should buy and where in your garden you want to site it.

One question that often crops up on this topic is the issue of planning permission. Do you need to obtain permission to erect a simple garden shed? We’ve got the answers you need.

Is it necessary to get planning permission for a new shed?

In the vast majority of cases the answer will be no. This is because sheds fall under the area of permitted development, i.e. development that is automatically approved.

There are rules and limitations relating to what you can legally erect in your garden, but most sheds will not flout these rules. For instance they must be single storey – something that will apply to all sheds. You can also have more than one shed providing you don’t cover more than 50% of the land surrounding your property. Depending on the size of your garden it is quite possible you could easily have four or five sheds plus a summerhouse!

You should however be aware there are limitations if you are to run a business from your chosen garden building – even if it is intended to be a shed. In this case you will need planning permission, regardless of the size of the shed.

Is there any limit on size?

You must ensure the floor area of your shed does not exceed 15 square metres. Obviously most sheds will be significantly smaller than this, but even if it exceeds it you may still not require planning permission as long as it is no bigger than 30 square metres.

If this is the case you must also make sure it is not intended for sleeping purposes and that it is at least a metre away from the boundaries that surround it.

A basic overview

To recap then, you have a lot of versatility and freedom when it comes to buying a shed for your garden. Your main task will be to consider what size shed you require, and providing you do not exceed the square metre restrictions you can site it wherever you wish.

However you should still think practically; for example don’t site it too close to a boundary in case you ever have to replace that boundary (especially in terms of a fence). Remember you will also need to consider how you will access the shed. Keep all these things in mind when shopping and make sure you measure out the plot prior to buying your chosen shed.

If you are in any doubt at all

It is always best to be on the safe side when it comes to planning permission. If all you need is a basic shed of a familiar size, you will be fine. However, if you are planning to add a large garden building to your garden – something more like a summer house or a log cabin for example – it is best to check the regulations. This may put your mind at rest as they are laid out in quite a straightforward manner.

If you are still unsure, contact your local planning department to find out more. You can also read more detailed information online that will give you more detailed exemption rules.