Two Magic Words – Permission Granted!

Two Magic Words – Permission Granted!


Two Magic Words – Permission Granted!

Those powerful words…‘Prior Notification is required and is Granted’ have now become that little bit easier to achieve.

The recent announcement of ‘General Permitted Development Order’ (GPDO) new rules for permitted development has been hugely significant for some of our clients who have been stuck in a planning permission struggle with the local council.

The new rules permit the construction of up to two additional storeys to an existing two-storey dwelling or one additional storey, where the dwelling consists of one storey. 


Our first project to benefit under this new directive is a beautiful home in Ongar.  

Our client wanted to add an additional storey to their existing property to accommodate growing family needs and more living space.


After going through the original process and being denied planning permission, the introduction of the new rules has now fast tracked the prior approval and allowed their building work to be carried out without an official planning application.   


In theory, this all sounds simple but there are still some restrictions that need to be adhered to. Upwards extensions need to meet a tight criteria, considering height, natural light, neighbour privacy, and the desired construction method.

A permitted development application must be accompanied by scaled architectural drawings, outlining the property, and proposed development. Our team of knowledgeable Architects helped our client understand the PD rules and how to make them work.  We supplied technical and creative drawings to support the proposal that was then ‘Granted’ in record time. Construction is now underway, and we are really excited to see the finished project.


Please contact us to discuss the vision for your project and our highly skilled team will help you understand how to truly make the most of the new rules and your home.


For more information:
https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/permitted-development-rights-for-householders-technical-guidance 

Author : Jessica Parkes. Read more articles for MP Architects LLP https://www.martynpattie.co.uk/news/

The Power of Permitted Development

As of 1st of September, the UK Government has made some landmark changes to permitted development rights in England allowing us to enlarge our property without the need for planning permission.

The new permitted development rights to extend upwards have been in the pipeline for a long time and our team of RIBA accredited Architects have been building up their knowledge base to enable them to support our clients in understanding how to make the most of the new rules.

What is Permitted Development?

The General Permitted Development Order (GPDO) is a national grant of planning permission, which allows certain building works, and changes of use to be carried out without having to make an official planning application. The new policy has been rewritten to help speed up the planning process and create more homes by building upwards or altering the use of existing buildings.

What does Permitted Development mean to you?

The new rules were designed to help us all make better use of our existing housing infrastructure and to revive town centres and increase footfall. Homeowners are now able to add two more floors to their houses without needing full planning permission and commercial premises may now be demolished of changed for use in favour of residential development. 

The good news is that the red tape has finally been removed for a speedier process that opens up a number of possibilities for better living and financial gains for Homeowners, Developers and Landlords

Building Upwards

The new rules permit the construction of up to two additional storeys of residential accommodation on top of existing, purpose-built blocks of flats. Two additional storeys may be added where the existing dwelling house is two or more storeys tall, or one additional storey where the dwelling house consists of one storey, for example, in the case of a bungalow.  

Navigating the Criteria

In theory, the update to the Town and Country Planning Regulations 2020 sounds relatively simple but there are still several restrictions that need to be navigated and adhered to.  Upwards extensions need to meet a tight criteria taking into account height, natural light, neighbour privacy and the construction method you want to use.  All projects of this nature will be subject to prior approval and formal submission of application to the local planning authority to seek confirmation that specified parts of a development are acceptable before work can commence.

Personal Gains

With the flexibility to extend your home upwards, you may no longer need to move home to create the extra space needed for or a growing family or elderly parents.

In the past, moving home to accommodate family life may have been your only option. Now you can forget Estate Agents comissions, stamp duty, moving costs and Solicitor fees, vertically extending your home with up to 2 storeys can provide the perfect living solution whilst protecting your precious garden space. 

We understand the rules so you don’t have to

Permitted development rights come with their own restrictions and in some cases particular homes may not be subject to PD rules. A permitted development application needs to be accompanied by scaled architectural drawings, which outline the existing property and proposed development. 

Our experienced RIBA Architects can help you navigate the new PD rules, supply technical drawings, encompassing creative and practical design features whilst making the most of the space and providing maxim value of the investment at a relatively small cost.

And of course, in the case that you require more flexibility and freedom for your project, we can apply for planning permission on your behalf to ensure the right criteria for your proposal is met and help maximise fast approval for your plans from the local council. 

Please contact us to discuss the vision for your project and our highly skilled team will help you understand how to truly make the most of your home.


Author : Jessica Parkes. Read more articles for MP Architects LLP https://www.martynpattie.co.uk/news/

Fresh Laundry Goals

Yes, we can all be dazzled by a gorgeous en-suite bathroom and a beautiful dressing area, but the one room that really can make others gasp in pure envy is an all-singing, all-dancing utility room.

Any growing household can almost guarantee an expanding laundry pile to match and accumulation of some of the dirtiest and most disliked household chores.

A utility room may often be compact, but it can also be the perfect place for the jobs that are far too dirty for your kitchen sink, hence making them one of the most desirable rooms in your house and adding considerable market value.

Well functioning utility rooms are all about making life easier, tidier, and more efficient. A perfectly equipped zone to move dull chores away from the family kitchen and freeing up some precious living space.

When designing new dwellings or extending existing homes our Architects are often asked to include a utility room. Our team are experts at this type of home extension that often falls within the realms of Permitted Development allowing you to create your dream utility room without the need for planning permission.

What we consider when designing your utility room:

Laundry Chute – Deposit your dirty linen directly to the washing machine. You will never see an odd sock on the stairs that got dropped along the way to the washing machine again.

Pulley Maid – Make the most of the ceiling space with a pulley maid drying rack as a sustainable alternative to the tumble dryer.

Larger Integrated Appliances – A designated utility room can make way for large integrated appliances such as a tumble dryer and a washing machine, making laundry a far less laborious task.

Water Softener – The inclusion of a good quality water softener tackles the problem of lime-scale by eliminating harmful minerals from the water before it has a chance to reach your appliances making them sustain the test of time for much longer.

Shelving – A practical shelving solution will give you the perfect system to keep things tidy and a great place to store detergents and other harmful liquids away from young children and pets.

Hanging Racks – Foldaway racks are a space-saving alternative to the tumble dryer, drying your clothes in an environmentally friendly way and reducing the need for ‘Popeye’ arms when ironing.

Counter Space – A reasonable amount of counter space enables fuss-free folding of clothes. Try to include a pull-out version to make the most of smaller spaces.

Large Sink – An oversized sink is indeed a core luxury item, the best place to wash the dog, clean muddy football boots or to soak the team rugby kit!

A well-designed utility room really can deliver the wow factor! Any good Architect will design this space making sure you have more than enough storage for coats, bags and shoes, above and beyond the number of power points for all those appliances you have planned in, whilst considering the use of under-floor heating for practical use to help dry your washing faster.


Author : Jessica Parkes. Read more articles for MP Architects LLP https://www.martynpattie.co.uk/news/

MP Architects Appoint Marketing Consultant Jessica Parkes

MP Architects LLP has boosted its award-winning team with the appointment of Marketing Consultant Jessica Parkes.

With a wealth of experience and career history as an independent Marketing Consultant, Jessica has been appointed to assist MP Architects LLP with the planning and delivery of their Sales and Marketing strategy.

Jessica will be supporting the growth of the business with the development and implementation of Social Media, PR, Website Content Marketing, Branding, Marketing Materials, Search Engine Optimisation along with Digital and Direct Marketing Strategies across the practice as it continues to deliver top-class architectural services.

Parkes joins MP Architects LLP’s growing Essex based team who previously worked as a Marketing Consultant for a Property Tech Company said “I am delighted to join such an established business with a brilliant team that has the energy and drive to succeed, I am really looking forward to developing a focused marketing strategy and communications programme to increase our profile and win new business.

Martyn Pattie, said of the hiring:  “Jessica’s appointment represents part of our rapid growth and our need for a Marketing Specialist to support our future business plans. She comes with an abundance of relevant experience to help us move forward professionally and successfully.”

For further press information please contact Jessica Parkes, MP Architects LLP  

E: jessica@mparchitectsllp.co.uk

 T: 01277321214

Furlough Fruition, Baking and Beyond….

March 2020 and the nation tuned in to listen to Chancellor, Rishi Sunak announce unprecedented measures supporting businesses and their employees through the COVID-19 pandemic.

For many of us, the term ‘Furlough’ was an unknown phrase and a new concept.  Fast forward a few months and Furlough has certainly become a widely used word that over 9 million UK workers can now fully understand.

Like others, part of our team was temporarily “furloughed” as we adjusted our workforce to meet staff and business needs. 

As tempting as it may sound, binge-watching Netflix in their PJ’s was something that none of our furloughed staff wanted to do.  They made the most of the opportunity to engage in training and learning new skills, so that upon their return to work they will be more prepared and informed than ever before! 

And they didn’t disappoint….

One of our Senior Architects, Kate Murray spent many hours educating and improving her knowledge of Revit, the leading BIM modelling software tool that is used by architects all over the world. Revit enables the design of structures that, when built, should look exactly like the digital view.  Kate also managed to decorate no less than five rooms in her home and perfected her baking skills of delicious sourdough ‘lockdown’ loaves!

Dandi Passerini is another multi-talented member of our team.  Along with learning the art of ‘parent home schooling’ Dandi also continued to fulfil her annual RIBA CPD obligations, whilst studying very hard to become a qualified BREEAM AP.  

BREEAM is the world’s leading sustainability assessment method for master planning projects, infrastructure, and buildings, which means that Dandi will be able to provide a professional BREEAM consultancy service to clients, designing buildings that achieve the accredited BREEAM sustainable rating.  

Our Architectural Assistant, Navid Hamzeheinejad has definitely made the most of this great opportunity too.  Navid has been working tirelessly on his studies for his RIBA Part 3 examinations. This is the final stage of the qualification process, that will see Navid’s passion and dream of becoming a qualified Architect develop into a reality.   And…as if that wasn’t enough to keep him busy, Navid has also given himself a huge skills boost, engaging in Rhino 3D design software tutorials and allocating any spare time to becoming a multilingual mastermind and taking steps to learn German. Gute Arbeit Navid!

Upon reflection, as businesses start to reopen and staff begin to return, the furlough scheme has allowed us to adapt to the challenges that came hand in hand with pandemic and the global economic slowdown, but it has also lent itself to allowing our passionate team to up-skill and educate themselves, making ‘furlough’ work for their careers, our customers and to support the longevity of our successful Architect Practice.

Stay Healthy.

Martyn Pattie


Author : Jessica Parkes. Read more articles for MP Architects LLP https://www.martynpattie.co.uk/news/

Homes – The New Normal

For the past 80 days, most of us have spent more time at home than ever before.  Our ‘Home Sweet Home’ has been acting less like a hotel and more like a makeshift workplace, school, pub, gym and most of all a safe place to retreat to, from the virus.

Coronavirus has encouraged us to rethink the kind of life we want to live post-pandemic and the role our homes will play in this.  The future design of practical living has changed and we now know what works and what doesn’t in our home layout.

Have the light and airy open-plan living spaces you once craved been a major cause of stress during this period, due to the lack of privacy and unforgiving acoustics? 

And, has the major shift with so many of us working from home encouraged you to realise that your spare bedroom is no longer a suitable ‘WFH’ solution?

Has it become clear that your dining room is perfect for dinner parties, but highly impractical for home-schooling?

Our gyms have been closed for months and with the sale of home exercise equipment reaching stratospheric heights, it seems that home gyms have become almost as crucial as a home office!

The Kitchen has always been the most essential room in any home, but with the closure of restaurants and pubs they have become even more important as they are used as a central hub for work, schooling, cooking and also a place just to ‘hang out’.

We will all be striving to make our homes cleaner and healthier, with fewer indoor visitors and less room for cross-contamination. Our future housing designs will be responding to what people perceive as priority features in their homes and the new realities of home education, working from home as well as a healthier lifestyle. 

Sir Winston Churchill once said, ‘Those who fail to learn from history are condemned to repeat it’

Indeed, many of us are now understand the surprising advantages of historic homes and their separate rooms that nowadays would differentiate places at home for work and for living.

We also now may prefer the exercise in our own homes or in public outdoor spaces as opposed to visiting the local gym.

Who knows…. we may even see the return of the ‘outside toilet’!  Once deemed as a sign of hardship, but could now be seen as luxury addition, designated just for visitors to your home post COVID-19.

If it is time for you to think about a better functioning home with clearly thought out spaces, smart solutions, family-friendly acoustics and beautiful outdoor living spaces, let us help you make your home one that can withstand the future of change.

Stay safe, stay healthy.

Thank you NHS Key Workers

We want to say a huge thank you to the thousands of key workers that have been working tirelessly on the frontline during the COVID -19 pandemic. We are truly inspired by what you are all doing in these challenging times.

Despite the hardships and health risks, our essential frontline workers continue to do their jobs to keep us safe, fed, collecting our bins, providing life-saving medicine, caring for those who are most vulnerable, cleaning our public places and hospitals.

We thank you for the risks and challenges you face, putting your lives on the line, trying to save ours.  

We also extend our thanks to our loyal clients and future customers for supporting our local architectural practice at this difficult time.  We are continuing to work and moving your projects forward, but also protecting each other by observing Public Health England’s social distancing guidelines. 

 Please Stay Safe and Protect our NHS.

Thank you NHS rainbow


Author : Jessica Parkes. Read more articles for MP Architects LLP https://www.martynpattie.co.uk/news/

Some Valid Reasons For Turning Your Loft Into Additional Living Space & How An Architect Can Help

Do you have a growing family that needs extra living space? Are you following the trend of working from home on a semi or full-time basis?

If the answer to either (or both!) of these questions is ‘Yes’ then a loft conversion makes perfect sense.

There are many reasons why this is the case. Below we highlight:

  • Some of the major benefits of converting your loft.
  • Consider potential planning permission requirements.
  • Explain why including a respected architectural firm in your project really does make sense.

Multiple use – What’s your choice:

The value of creating additional space in your home cannot be underestimated. Your unused loft or attic is the perfect place to achieve this.

Multiple use choice is yours. Think in terms of:

  • An additional bedroom: Go all the way and include an en-suite bathroom.
  • Home office: Perfect for working from home, studying or research.
  • Hobby room: If a family member(s) has a particular hobby they are keen on, then having a separate room for this activity is an excellent solution.
  • Den for the children: By creating a ‘cool’ space for the kids to relax in and entertain friends you are doing yourself and the children a big favour.
  • Home gym: A healthy lifestyle and fitness routines are something the whole family should be encouraged to embrace. By converting your loft into a home gym and workout room you are providing a highly useful room for all. (A shower room in this instance would also be a good addition).

Is planning permission required:

The general rule here is that if you do not plan to alter the exterior of your home, then planning permission is not required.

This is because under current UK regulations a ‘standard’ loft conversion is classed as permitted development.

However, there are exceptions to this general rule – Some examples being:

  • Converted houses.
  • Flats.
  • Maisonettes.
  • Listed buildings.
  • Property in “Designated Areas” – This includes conservation areas, areas of Outstanding Natural Beauty and national parks.

The above is certainly not an exhaustive list. Checks with local authority planning departments MUST be carried out before any loft conversion work begins. Failure to do so could mean you fall foul of regulations and need to undo all conversion work that has been completed.

Do you need the assistance of an architect?

The strict answer here is “No”. However, there are many benefits to be gained from using the services of a respected, fully qualified architectural firm such as M P Architects LLP.

Here’s just 5 of the many reasons as to why using an architect for your loft conversion project will reap rewards:

  • Time saved on understanding exactly what is allowed and what is not relating to any planning permission and permitted development rights in your local area.
  • Expert advice: Not only will you receive expert advice on ‘best use’ of space dependent on your wishes, but a good architect has their finger on the pulse when it comes to the most appropriate materials to be used and modern trends of design.
  • Provision of architectural drawings. Please do not dismiss this highly important point. Skilled architects have a trained eye. They can help transform your needs and requirements into reality.

This is first seen in architectural drawings your chosen architect will provide. These will be based on the type of loft conversion you are looking for. Their highly detailed drawings and design will maximise available space and allow you to clearly visualise the finished conversion.

  • Tried & trusted trade professionals: If you do not have a trusted source in terms of loft conversion work, an architect does! They will have a list of trusted professionals that will see the project completed in a high-quality manner.
  • Overall project management: Having an architect on board and appointing them to project manage your loft conversion will mean less stress for you, timelines on each stage of work are clear, agreed work is adhered to and completed professionally, and those all-important, agreed budgets are met.

The value you add to your home will more than pay for the project

Loft conversions are not only a very sensible use of space, they will also add to the value of your home.

How much obviously depends on type of use, work carried out and quality of the conversion. By enlisting the assistance of M P Architects LLP, you will be maximizing potential in many more ways than one.

Architects Offer Huge Advantages When It Comes To Planning Permission For New Houses & Extensions

How Architects Can Save You Major Headaches When It Comes to Planning Permission on New Houses and extensions

Anyone planning a new house build or adding to their existing house will benefit from taking M P Architects from the very beginning of their project.

We are a RIBA and ARB registered practice meaning our staff are fully qualified and have spent years training to be experts in our field.

We offer services from initial consultation, through design and achieving planning consent to project managing your project for you. Therefore, taking the stress away and making sure it is built in accordance with the plans and compliant to the current regulations.

We will concentrate on the benefits you can receive by appointing M P Architects in terms of planning permission for new houses and extensions.

Do you need planning permission?

This largely depends upon the project you are undertaking. If you do need planning permission, then you need to make sure this is in place prior to any building works being carried out.

Some extensions fall under ‘Permitted Development’ which we will cover in another article.

If you are looking at building a new house(s) or extension that does not fall into Permitted Development, then obtaining planning permission is essential.

This is where M P Architects can be of immediate benefit to you. With our free initial consultation, we are able to come and meet you, discuss your requirements, advise you whether planning permission is required and how we think we can help you make your dreams come true.

If your project does require planning permission and work commences without obtaining it, then it is possible that an enforcement notice will be served. This doesn’t mean you won’t be able to continue building, but you should stop and get M P Architects involved to advise you on the best way forward and achieve planning consent for you.

Different rules for designated areas/listed buildings:

Extending or building in the conservation area and altering a listed building can sometimes prove challenging, but it doesn’t mean you can’t do anything.  M P Architects have a very good working relationship with the local authorities, especially with the conservation officers to achieve permission for altering or extending your listed building.

Submitting a pre-application enquiry to the council prior to a planning application can save a lot of time and money. M P Architects often attend the pre-application meeting with our client at the Council’s office or on site, to discuss different design options with the planning officer and establish the principle of the development.

M P Architects can offer an invaluable service

When it comes to planning permission, experienced local architects such as M P Architects is key to gaining permission.

Here are some key reasons why:

  • Rules on planning permission vary depending on your location and the type of project you are undertaking. M P Architects can offer invaluable insight and service in this respect.
  • Experienced local architects are intimate with what is acceptable and what is not when it comes to your locality. M P Architects have extensive experience of how planning permission is viewed by the local authorities.
  • Professionally qualified local architects can advise on what (if any) changes to plans should be made before (or during) application. This advice will help greatly in terms of obtaining planning permission for new homes as well as extensions and outbuildings.
  • Timing of applying/amending (where necessary)/receiving of any planning permission is crucial to the success of start dates of any project. M P Architects can advise this at the beginning of your project.

Taking the weight off your shoulders – Carrying out a project related to the building of a new home involves many strands. If M P Architects have been appointed to carry out the full service of project managing on-site.  We will ensure your house will be built to a high standard, we will check all the construction details have been built to the correct design and specifications.  We will liaise with the builder for any queries so you don’t have to. Most importantly, we will ensure the project is completed on time and on budget.

Using a respected local architect like M P Architects makes eminent sense:

As we touched on at the beginning of the piece, availing of the services of a respected local architect will most certainly benefit your project.

In most cases, the more involved an architect is in a project, the more rewarding the outcome.  Visit our testimonial page to see what other people said about using our services.

 

 

A beautiful two-storey attached annexe completed

We have recently completed this beautiful two-storey attached annexe in Harlow, which M P Architects were involved from initial design to construction completion covering all the RIBA Stages 0-7.

We are very pleased with the final outcome.  One of our recommended builders Thornwood Construction Ltd won the project through the formal tender process, and they have worked closely with our client and Architect to build this annexe.

The attached annexe, which is the left-hand-side extension in the photo (taken on the 4th December 2019) has received a number of compliments from neighbours.  The extension feels like it has been part of the original house since the beginning; its size, style and materials matched the site perfectly.

Throughout the project, our goal is to achieve the best design and value for our client and keep the designs within their budget, while still delivering a high standard of finish to match the existing house.

The planning for this project was challenging at the beginning, as the Council refused our initial application due to the large size of the extension.  However, after our experienced Architect liaised with the Planning Officer and discussed the design with him, we then resubmitted the drawings without changing the size but with a 600mm set back from the main house and achieved consent for our client.

M P Architects is honoured to have carried out a full architectural service for this project, and we are delighted with the result.   We are also very pleased to have received the following compliment email/feedback from our client on our last day of site inspection:

 

“Dear Martyn,

I have mentioned on my emails in the past to you how grateful we were to have Dandi remain on our project. I do not think i am able to being to thank her enough for what she has done for us.
I emailed you about Thornwood, and the quality of the build, but please can you note how Dandi has gone above and beyond what I ever imagined an architect would be able to do; and ask that this email is to be held considerably higher in regard.

Being at the end of a phone, on WhatsApp, FaceTime, not only in office hours, but when a query or worry arose that we knew she could help with.

I have searched endlessly with RIBA and ARB and then spoke to them to how to officially compliment her as an architect but sadly, I have been informed there is only a complaints procedure and there is no formal route to comment on her excellence.

I am emailing you today ahead of our meeting as I wanted to personally say thank you.
I am very happy to recommend you as an architectural firm but also Dandi for her individuality.
Her kindness, support, personality and sense of humour has added a valuable layer to her architectural experience and skill.

Once again, thank you.

Kind regards”

 

I wish our clients all the best in the future and we hope they are enjoying living in the new spaces.

If you have a residential project in mind and don’t know where to start, at M P Architects LLP we offer a free initial site visit to discuss your goals and aspirations and we will provide a free quotation for our work.  Please feel free to drop us an email or a phone call.  Click the text to see our Testimonial page and our Portfolio of some complected projects.