How to Build a Garden Room

Karen James

Many people are discovering the benefits of extending the space in their homes by putting a room or summer house in the garden. It’s the most cost-effective way you can gift yourselves that extra space. Whether you want a tranquil office space not too far from the house or the kids have outgrown the rooms you currently have and you need an extra one – a garden room could be the perfect solution for your family. But where do you start?

Even if you have building experience, you won’t be able to bring the cost of a DIY garden build down much lower than if you buy a partially constructed building and have experts install it for you. You’ll still have to buy all of the materials and then there’s the physical and emotional cost of your time, effort, blood, sweat and tears. Since you won’t be saving yourself a great deal of money doing it this way, surely the best way to build a garden room is to purchase one from a leading supplier and have it installed? Save yourself the stress! At Nordic Garden Buildings, we also offer finance options, making your new garden room even more affordable. We have a wide range of design options available too, so we’re sure you’ll be able to find something you like that meets all of your requirements.

Do I need planning permission for a summer house in the garden?

One of the best things about adding to your home with a garden building is that it can often be done without the need to apply for planning permission. In order to achieve this, your building must comply with the height and positioning rules of permitted development. We’ll guide you through the rules in this article, but for more information and continuous updates please visit: www.gov.uk/planning-permission-england-wales. You could also contact your local planning authority.

As a homeowner, it’s your responsibility to check if you require planning permission for the specific structure you wish to install. If it turns out you did need planning permission and you have built anyway, the council can insist that you take your building down. Follow our helpful guide and do further research to avoid making this costly mistake.

How big can a building be without planning permission?

You usually do not need planning permission for a garden structure if:

  • No more than 50% of the area surrounding your original house is covered by additions
  • You do not live in a listed building, national park, world heritage site or area of outstanding natural beauty.
  • Your building is not placed beyond the front wall of your house
  • Your building is no taller than 2.5m at the eaves an 4m at the ridge (or 3m for a mono pitch roof)
  • Your building is situation more than 2m from each boundary line
  • If your building is within 2m of a boundary line it should be no taller than 2.5m in total.

Can I build a house in my garden?

Given the restrictions on height for a garden building without planning permission, you’d probably find it difficult to live in one! It’s entirely possible to build a house in your garden, but the likelihood is you’re going to require full planning permission. If you live in a listed building, national park, world heritage site or area of outstanding natural beauty – you’re likely to still require full planning permission even if your building meets the height and space requirements for permitted development. We recommend that you have a pre-planning meeting with your local planning authority so that you get a really good grasp of what the hurdles you will need to overcome are. If you need help overseeing your planning application, we’ve got you covered.

If you’d like to learn more about permitted development and planning law, please download our full planning permission guide. If you need anything else at all that please don’t hesitate to get in touch. We look forward to hearing from you.