The building control service processes building regulation applications and makes sure that building work meets minimum standards in the following areas:
- energy conservation
- access facilities for disabled people
To meet these standards there are guidelines about the construction of foundations, floors, wall, roofs and drains. The laws about buildings and fire safety are complex, so we recommend seeking advice at an early stage if you intend to make alterations to factories, shops, offices, hotels and boarding houses.
What we do
We consider applications for building regulation. Our main tasks include:
- making sure that building work is carried out to the standards required by the building regulations
- providing help and advice both before and after the start of works that are subject to the building regulations
- providing help and advice for places of public entertainment and the safety of sports grounds
- providing help and advice for dangerous structures, including the issuing of appropriate notices
- arranging for the appropriate notices and action for demolitions
Types of building control applications Toggle accordion
There are four types of building control regulations that you can apply for:
Full plans submission
Full plans submissions can apply to any type of building work but must always be submitted for works on commercial buildings, schools, shops, offices, railway premises, factories and hotels.
Building notice submission
Building notice submissions are used only for minor domestic works such as alterations and extensions. This process does not involve the approving or rejecting of plans.
Building work is considered unauthorised if building control consent hasn’t been received. However, consent can still be sought by applying for a regularisation certificate.
It is an offence to begin any demolition work without giving notice. You must usually give at least six weeks notice of any building demolition work you intend to undertake.
You can report a dangerous structure or building to us day or night. A structure or building is considered dangerous if it poses a risk to public safety.
Full building plans application Toggle accordion
The most important things to know about a full building plans application are:
- you can use it for all types of building work
- you need to send two copies of plans and application forms (four copies for designated buildings)
- you will pay charges when you send us the plans and again after the first site inspection
- the decision can take up to five weeks (two months if agreed)
- as long as you follow the approved plans, the work will normally meet building standards when it is inspected
- you can send us amended plans as long as the scheme is generally the same
- approval notice ends three years after the work has been approved
A full plans submission form must be completed and sent to us, together with:
- two copies of the drawings showing the existing and the proposed layouts with full construction details
- payment of the fee for the submission
We have five weeks, with a further three weeks if agreed by you, to check the plans but normally they will be checked within 10 days.
If the plans are incorrect you will be asked to amend them. Once the submission has been approved, an approval notice will be issued. When you begin the work, you must contact us and at each stage of construction. You will be invoiced for the inspection fee when you commence the work. When the work has been satisfactorily completed and inspected, a completion certificate will be issued.
Building notice application Toggle accordion
Building notice applications can be used only for minor domestic works such as alterations and extensions. This process does not involve the approving or rejecting of plans.
A building notice submission form must be completed and sent to us at least 48 hours before the commencement of work. A building notice fee must be paid with the submission.
If the work is for an extension, a location plan is needed showing the position of the drains and the boundary of the site. If the work is for internal alterations, no plans are required. Depending on the work involved, however, we may ask for more information.
You must notify us at each stage of the construction. When the work has been satisfactorily completed and inspected, a completion certificate will be issued.
The most important things to know about a building notice application:
- best suited for small, uncomplicated work
- can't be used for designated buildings (anywhere people are employed) or buildings within three metres of a public sewer
- you must send us a block plan showing the proposals in relation to existing buildings, boundaries and nearby streets
- for an extension (including roof extension), you must send us its floor area with two copies of the building notice application forms
- no decision notice is issued
- you will pay one charge when you send us the notice
- there is more emphasis on site work and your builder — work may need to be removed or altered if it does not meet standards
- notice ends three years after being accepted
- may not be accepted by some lending organisations
Download a building notice application:
Building notice application form (PDF, 29.37 KB)
Regularisation application Toggle accordion
If building work is carried out without building control approval, it is considered unauthorised. Where unauthorised works have been carried out, the building owner may be prosecuted. However, consent can still be sought by applying for a regularisation certificate.
Please note that:
- regularisation applies only to works started on or after 11 November 1985
- a regularisation fee must be included with the submission
- regularisation fees are not subject to VAT
- works may need to be exposed, removed and/or rectified to meet building regulations
- once works have been approved, a certificate of regularisation is issued
Download an application for a regularisation certificate below.
Regularisation certificate application (PDF, 23.36 KB)
Fees and charges Toggle accordion
Whether you submit a full plans application or submit a building notice, the charge will be the same.
However, with a full plans application part of the charge must be paid when the application is submitted and the remainder must be paid when work has been inspected (when the work starts).
If a building notice is used, the total charge is payable at the time of submission.
LBBD Building Control Fees 2018 (PDF, 222.22 KB)
Online applications Toggle accordion
You can submit a building control application online via the Submit-a-Plan website. Submit-a-Plan allows you to submit building control applications electronically and offline to any Local Authority in England, Wales and Northern Ireland, free of charge.
Building Control Service
Town Hall, 1 Town Square, Barking IG11 7LU
020 8227 3933