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Starting works before building control approval of plans

Discussion in 'Building Regulations and Planning Permission' started by james2006, 29 Jul 2011.

  1. james2006

    james2006

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    Hi - I live in a 3 storey town house, with the fourth bedroom and garage downstairs. I have decided to install an ensuite shower room and walk in wardrobe in the garage - leaving me with a 'croppped' garage. This will involve 3 new openings into the garage (supported by lintels), errection of an insullated stud wall partition between the ensuite and garage, connection of new drainage into my private soil pipe before it hits the manhole etc.

    I had an architect draw and submit the plans to building control. However I am not expecting approval for some time. I really need to start this asap as my builder is good to work now. The archictect is saying the plans are simple and there is no need to wait for approval. I then questioned how BC will inspect certain aspects of the build eg DPC. The archictect said take photos of all the key stages and that should be ok. The archictect told me it is common for projects to start work prior to approval.

    Is this normal to go ahead without aproval? Would appreciate some thoughts from those with experience in this area. Cheers
     
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  3. freddiemercurystwin

    freddiemercurystwin

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    You can start before an approval especially if the works are of a non complicated nature which these are provided you're builder is not a complete idiot and knows he has to provide works compliant with the regs (builders are not automatically under that obligation BTW). There is nothing wrong with telling BC you have started works though in order to trigger the inspections provided you have paid the inspection fee. Check who is going to be responsible for arranging Building Control inspections again do not take it for granted that your builder will do this automatically. Realistically Approval usually takes about 2-4 weeks depending on the Authority.
     
  4. james2006

    james2006

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    Thanks. I wont have any problems with the builder as he is my uncle and I will be working with him on this one. One question I do have is the thermal insullation on the flooring.

    The garage floor is 80mm below the bedroom level. The plans say lay the damp proof membrane (would you use a DPM or synthraprufe?), 80mm of celotex R and then 75mm screed finish. However this will take me 75mm above bedroom level!!

    I assume if I just damp prrof and scree BC will be unhappy?
     
  5. freddiemercurystwin

    freddiemercurystwin

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    A DPM should be fine, ask your architect to amend the drawings, that's a bit of a poor show that he's creating a step up into the now habitable part of the garage. Timber battens with insulation between and plywood on top will be thinner albeit probably non compliant if it lines through but usually BC are a bit flexible in this department. That's the beauty of a full plans approval, that you can work through little indiscretions like this before you get to site. Get your architect to change the construction to

    existing slab
    dpm
    insulation between battens (about 60mm)
    18mm plywood

    If he's been appointed to do so, get him to ring up the appointed inspector and check this will be acceptable before he re-submits the drawing. Then when you come to build it you know you're not gonna have to rip it up.

    Things like this really pee me off (your architect BTW).
     
  6. james2006

    james2006

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    Thanks for the advice. I shall talk to the archictect on Monday.

    Agree its crap of him to suggest a step up in the house.

    Any suggestions on fastening the timber frame to the floor with penetrating the DPM? Or will will it just be 'floating'?

    Cheers
     
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  8. freddiemercurystwin

    freddiemercurystwin

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    Just floating. Once you penetrate the dpm you may as well not bother with it. Should be fine unless you plan on sticking a grand piano on it.
     
  9. james2006

    james2006

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    Thanks! One other question....

    I recently found out that my garden deck may have needed PP before it was constructed. When BC inspect the new drainage for the ensuite do you think they will ask about the deck?
     
  10. freddiemercurystwin

    freddiemercurystwin

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  11. james2006

    james2006

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    Thanks - you have been most helpful! I shall give the archictect a slap on monday and hopefully iron out the problems. Have a great weekend.
     
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