Application forms and building regulation charges

1. Differences between a full plans application and building notice

Full plans application

A full plans application is a more thorough way to request building regulations approval. Along with the application form and fees, 2 copies of your plans must be submitted showing how your project will be constructed. The details are then checked to make sure that they comply with building regulations.

If your application is approved, or if amendments are needed, these will be requested at an early stage. This is usually before work starts on site.


  • advice will be given on the building regulations at the design stage of your project, meaning your plans are more likely to be passed
  • once the plans have been approved, we then carry out inspections at regular intervals during construction
  • your builder has the benefit of working with an approved plan which reduces the risk of breaching the regulations and will help to avoid costly delays
  • most details are agreed at an early stage, giving you and the builder a degree of reassurance. It's important to remember that problems can still occur that were not evident during the design stage
  • once we're satisfied that the work complies with the building regulations, a completion certificate will be issued. This acts as evidence that the work has been undertaken to an acceptable standard and can be passed on to any future purchasers of the premises


  • you'll need to prepare a set of detailed plans that include all the information necessary to carry out the work, from the depth of the foundations to the height of the chimney
  • unless you're preparing your own plans, you'll need to employ the services of a designer which can be expensive
  • once you've submitted your plans it takes between 3 to 5 weeks for us to carry out the checks and issue a decision
  • most building projects are a considerable financial investment, it’s important that both you and your builder are familiar with the building regulation requirements to avoid any unnecessary expense

Building notice application

A building notice application is one of 2 ways to request building regulations approval. It can be a good option if you're keen to make an early start on your project and are confident that you can meet the correct requirements of the building regulations.

There can be a high risk factor with this type of application. It's suitable for smaller and simpler projects.


  • you're only required to submit an application form, a location plan (if an extension is involved) and the correct fee
  • you are not required to create plans. This means you can avoid the cost of hiring a designer. However certain details of your project may be requested at a later stage
  • once your application has been submitted, you only have to wait 48 hours before starting your project


  • as plans are not required, you'll not receive the same level of protection and reassurance that you would get with a full plans application
  • the process of checking your project complies with the building regulations and is carried out at the site inspection. This means that if there's a problem it will usually be found after the work has started and could involve alterations
  • you're responsible for making sure that the work taking place complies with the building regulations
  • you'll need to make sure that your builder is familiar with the relevant regulations and be able to prove this when the Building Control officer visits the site
  • the total fee for a building notice application must be paid in full when submitting the application
  • whilst perhaps not a regulations issue, the existence of a plan can form the basis of a contractual agreement between you and your builder and could help avoid any disputes at a later date