The government’s announcement that new homes delivered through Permitted Development Rights will need to meet minimum space standards is a welcome boost to creating quality new homes, says the Federation of Master Builders (FMB). Permitted development homes make use of existing buildings, allowing them to be changed into homes without the need to go through a full planning application.
The new measures will mean that all new homes in England delivered through these rights will in the future have to meet the Nationally Described Space Standard.
The space standard begins at 37m² of floorspace for a new one bed flat with a shower room (39m² with a bathroom), ensuring proper living space for a single occupier.
Housing Secretary Robert Jenrick said: “The pandemic has further highlighted the importance of having somewhere secure and comfortable to live. While most developers deliver good homes and do the right thing, I’m tackling the minority of developers abusing the system by announcing that new homes delivered will have to meet space standards.”
Brian Berry, Chief Executive of the FMB said: “The introduction of new space standards will stop the creation of homes unfit for human habitation. Everyone deserves the right to a decent home and I’m grateful that the Housing Secretary has listened to the calls from a range of organisations, including the FMB, and that a loophole for unscrupulous builders has now been closed. No one should be expected to live in a ‘rabbit hutch’ home. Ensuring that these opportunities are open to small, local builders will mean more jobs retained and created in our communities.”
In August the government set out its plans to overhaul the planning system, including new measures to place beauty and design quality at the heart of new development.