If you are a householder and are thinking about carrying out external works to your property or within your curtilage then you are advised to follow up to 4 steps as set out below:

1. Does your property benefit from Permitted Development rights:

Certain works within the curtilage of houses do not require planning permission and are considered 'permitted development.' These permitted development rights DO NOT apply to the following types of properties or works:

  • It is a flat or maisonette (see the Planning Portal's Interactive Flat Tool);
  • The proposed works encroach on adjacent land (including guttering or foundations);
  • It was previously in commercial use and did not obtain planning permission to be converted to residential use;
  • The proposed works involve the erection of a new dwelling (please refer to the Non-Householder development page);
  • It is subject to an Article 4 directionIt is a listed building and/or within a conservation area.
  • The proposed works involve converting a garage (some properties have permitted development rights for this removed, meaning planning permission is required – contact the Planning Admin Team directly for further advice);
  • Permitted development rights have been removed from the property (applies to some properties built post-1990 and/or within the Green Belt – use this online form directly if you believe your property may fall within this category)

If your property falls within any of the above categories, it is likely planning permission is needed. Please go to step 3, otherwise, go to step 2.

2. Do you need planning permission:

With permitted development rights you are able to carry out a degree of additions, extensions and alterations without needing to apply for planning permission. Many extensions and internal works require Building Regulations approval, which is separate from planning permission. Please contact Building Control for further advice.

There are various ways in which you can check to see whether planning permission is required. We encourage use of the Planning Portal's Interactive Detached House Tool or Semi-Detached/Terrace Tool.

If you are planning on having a dropped kerb installed please click here for further advice on this and return to step 4 on this page if you have determined planning permission would be required for this and you wish to receive pre-application advice.

If you are satisfied that planning permission is not required then no further action is required on your part but please note it is up to you to use the above interactive tools as guides only and self-assessment of the limitations contained therein is not in itself confirmation that planning permission is not needed. For formal advice on proposed developments within existing residential plots please apply for a Lawful Development Certificate. The fee for this type of application can be found on our Schedule of Fees. Full drawings are required for such a submission. You should apply online here.

If you are satisfied that planning permission is needed, please go to step 3.

3. Householder Pre-application Advice:

We encourage and welcome the opportunity to provide advice before an application for planning permission is made. There are considerable benefits in seeking advice before making an application as:

  • It gives you an opportunity to understand how our planning policies will be applied to your development;
  • It will assist you in preparing proposals for formal submission which, providing you have taken our advice fully into account, will be handled more quickly;
  • It may lead to a reduction in time spent by your architects or professional advisors in working up proposals;
  • It may indicate that a proposal is completely unacceptable, saving you the cost of pursuing a formal application

In order for us to sustain and improve our current levels of service, the Council charges for householder pre-application advice, in addition to the fees payable for the submission of applications.

A Level 1 query involves a meeting with officers at the Civic Centre.

A Level 2 query involves written advice.

If you have decided to seek householder pre-application advice please continue to step 4.

4. Submitting a Householder Pre-application Enquiry:

For all householder pre-application enquiries please submit the following by e-mail to: Planning.Admin@dartford.gov.uk:

  • Full site address;
  • Description of the nature and scale of development proposed;
  • Photographs of the site showing the elevations of the house affected and the relationship between the sighting of the proposed works and neighbouring properties;
  • Annotated sketch drawings providing details of the proposal, including floor plans of the proposed building(s) together with sketch elevations that are sufficient to indicate the initial architectural approach and the materials proposed. Drawings should indicate sighting and scale of extension/alterations in relation to the existing property;
  • The appropriate fee. Payment can be made by debit or credit card over the phone by calling 01322 343203 or via the automated payments kiosk in the Civic Centre reception area, where payment by cash ONLY is accepted. Payment must be received before any meeting

If any of the above are not fulfilled your enquiry will not be dealt with.

Advice is provided by an individual planning officer but in liaison with appropriate colleagues and is agreed by a more senior officer before being issued.

Important Notes

Any advice given by Council officers for pre-application enquiries does not indicate any formal decision by the Council as local planning authority. Any views or opinions are given in good faith, and to the best of ability, without prejudice to the formal consideration of any planning application.

The final decision on any planning application that you may then make can only be taken after the Council has consulted local people, statutory consultees and any other interested parties. The final decision on an application will then be made by senior officers or by the Council's Development Control Board and will be based on all of the information available at that time.

You should therefore be aware that officers cannot guarantee the final formal decision that will be made to your application(s).

Any pre-application advice that has been provided will be carefully considered in reaching a decision or recommendation on an application; subject to the proviso that circumstances and information may change or come to light that could alter that position. It should be noted that the weight given to pre-application advice will decline over time.

DISCLAIMER: With all building work, the owner of the property (or land) in question is ultimately responsible for complying with the relevant planning rules and buildings regulations (regardless of the need to apply for planning permission and/or buildings regulations approval or not). Therefore, failure to comply with the relevant rules will result in the owner being liable for any remedial action (which could go as far as demolition and/or restoration). The general advice is to always discuss your proposals with the relevant local planning authority and building control services before starting work.

Design and Access Statements

A Design and Access Statement is a concise report accompanying certain applications for planning permission, applications for listed building consent and applications within a Conservation Area where a building or buildings with a floor space of 100 square metres or more. Full guidance and information on Design and Access Statements can be found on the GOV.UK website

Listed buildings

Listing is a short-hand term used to describe one of a number of legal procedures which help to protect the best of our architectural heritage.

Conservation areas

A Conservation Area is an area designated by the Local Planning Authority as one of special architectural or historic interest, the character or appearance of which it is desirable to preserve or enhance. Special controls exist with regard to demolition of buildings, advertisements and the like within the Conservation Area. Listed Building Consent must also be obtained for any demolition, even if the building is not itself listed.

Charging for pre-application advice

In addition to determining applications for planning permission, advert consent, listed building consent and works to protected trees, the Development Control Section is able to provide you with advice and information on a variety of topics.

Restrictions on permitted development - article 4 directions

Certain types of development can be carried out without the need for planning permission. This is known as permitted development, and covers a wide range of minor developments by householders, farmers and foresters.

Tree preservation orders

A Tree Preservation Order (TPO) is made by the Council to protect specific trees or a particular woodland from deliberate damage and destruction. TPOs prevent the felling, lopping, topping, uprooting or otherwise wilful damaging of trees without the permission of the local planning authority.

Permitted development rights

Permitted development rights are provided by Article 3 of the Town and Country Planning (General Permitted Development) Order 1995. This allows certain types of development to proceed without the need for planning permission.