FAQ's

These FAQs are the top 10 frequently asked questions we receive, detailed answers to questions relating to when and what requires building control can be found either at:

LABC Website 

Planning Portal 

Is Building Regulation Approval the same as Planning Permission?

No. These are two entriely separate functions. Planning permission considers the appearance of the proposal and it's impact on the locality. Certain proposals may require Building Regulation approval but not Planning Permission and vice versa. Planning advice is available from the Development Control Section. 

 

Can I speak to a Building Control Surveyor?

Yes we would always encourage you to discuss your proposals at the earliest opportunity. We obviously can't design the scheme for you but will be only too pleased to discuss Building Regulation requirement. A duty surveyor is generally available during office hours to discuss any Building Control issues you might have. You can contact a surveyor by telephone on 01634 331133, your enquiry will be responded to as soon as possible. 

Who is responsible for obtaining approvals?

With all building work the owner of the property (or land) is ultimately responsible for complying with the Building Regulations. Failure to comply with the relevant legislation results in the owner being liable for any remedial action, which could go as far as demolition and/or restoration. The general advice to architects, clients and contractors is to discuss your proposals with your building surveyor before starting work. 

Can the Local Authority Building Control get involved in a site being overseen by an Approved Inspector?

No. If you have chosen to use the services of an Approved Inspector the Local Authority Building Control is not permitted on site, discuss any aspect of the work or become involved in any issues you may be experiencing. 

What happens if the Approved inspector cannot give me a Final Certificate?

Only a Local Authority has enforcement powers; this means that if the project is unable to be completed by the Approved Inspector, the council is informed and the site reverts to them to carry out enforcement as necessary. Reversion fees apply to all works reverted back to the Local Authority. 

Who monitors Building Regulations?

That's our job - qualified and experienced teams of surveyors examine plans and carry out site inspections as work proceeds. Their extensive knowledge of materials, construction methods and local conditions is available to assist you at all stages of the construction process. We have a fully transparent service and would encourage you to discuss any aspect that you are not happy with as soon as possible. 

 

What area does STG cover?

STG covers the Canterbury, Gravesham, Medway and Swale areas.

What other services can STG offer?

In addition to building control services STG offers a range of associated services including SAPs, EPCs, SBEMs, DECs and stock condition surveys. 

Does Building Control act as a Clerk of Works?

No. Building Control surveyors will carry out the required inspections throughout the building work. A 'clerk of works' is responsible for ensuring that work carried out and materials being used on a construction project meet quality and safety standards, and confirm to client specifications. They also monitor progress to deliver the project on a budget and on time. Ultimately, compliance is the responsibility of the person carrying out the work.

Boundary Walls

If you intend carrying out work which involves:

  • work on an existing wall shared with another property
  • building on the boundary with a neighbouring property or
  • excavating near a neighbouring building

You must check if the proposed work comes under the Party Wall etc. Act 1996. If it does, you must notify all your neighbours affected by the proposals. You do not need to make a submission to construct a boundary wall providing it does not form part of the building. 

The Party Wall etc. Act 1996 requires you to inform adjoining owners, even if the work you intend to do is exempt under Building Regulations. This Act IS NOT controlled by the Local Authority, but does provide a framework for preventing disputes in relation to party walls, boundary walls and excavations near neighbouring buildings.