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  • Writer's pictureNFC Homes

The essential guide to obtaining planning permission for your field

The selling of land for development is a lucrative business, but selling it with planning permission can be even more profitable.

The questions that many people ask themselves are whether they should get planning permission before selling land and how to get planning permission for their field.

What permission types are there?

There are two standard types of permissions:

- Full Planning Permission

- Planning Permission Granted in Principle (PPI)

Full Planning Permission includes all the stages leading to getting approval - from submitting an application form, submitting supporting information and drawings to advertising the proposal locally. Depending on where you live, this process could take anywhere between 1-6 months.

Planning Permission Granted in Principle (PPI) means that your council has agreed in principle that the development would not have any significant impact on the surrounding area; however, they will likely not grant full planning permission until the plans have been approved by a committee and/or subject to conditions.

The selling of land with (or without) planning permission has its advantages and disadvantages. On the one hand, selling your land with planning permission can lead to a higher profit; on the other, selling it without planning permission is a much faster process and you don't have to finance the planning permission yourself.

It is worth noting that selling with planning permission has several further drawbacks. It's not just an easy way to boost your sale price. Getting permission for a development is time-consuming and expensive, there are no guarantees of any results in the end, and the landowner bears all the risk. It may be worth simply selling the land as is, without any plans in place, and allowing the developer who bought it to take on the risk instead.

Is land worth more with planning permission or without it?

Your land will generally be worth more with planning permission, which is usually enough to convince landowners to attempt to acquire it, but there are serious drawbacks to consider before you try to obtain planning permission.

1. It's time-consuming

Getting planning permission for your land is a time-consuming process. The application process can take several months to complete, and you may not be granted planning permission at the end of it.

2. Selling your land with planning permission is expensive

If selling your land with planning permission, you will have to pay a fee of around £500 and bear all other costs - like surveys & legal fees - whereas selling without planning permission doesn't come with these fees.

3. Your land has no guarantees of results

Even if selling your land with full planning permission, there are still no guarantees that you will get the desired result – such as selling the land to a developer for a high price. While selling without permission doesn't guarantee anything either, it can be significantly faster and won't leave you out of pocket.

4. You bear all the risk

The selling of land with planning permission means that you bear all the risks. If your application is rejected or granted on appeal after a long legal battle, there's no way back to the deal you would have secured before.

What are the advantages and disadvantages of seeking planning permission on your land?

There are several advantages of selling your land with planning permission - most notably the higher selling price that you can command for it. However, this has to be balanced with a few downsides.

Namely, that planning permission is restrictive for the developer and may discourage sales while you search for a buyer who wants the level of planning permission you've obtained.

It's also costly and time-consuming, and there are no guarantees of results. At the end of the day, you may have the plans refused and be left with a bill and a lot of wasted time.

Of course, selling land without any planning permission secured doesn't guarantee anything either, but there's no risk of the plans being shot down and no up-front cost for the permission review. It may also be quicker to find an interested developer.

How can I obtain planning permission on my land?

The first step in selling your land with planning permission is to consider the type of development that you may want on it (residential, commercial or industrial) and submit a full application for the specific type. You can apply for both outline permissions (i.e., permission without any detailed plans) as well as specific permissions if more detail is required, but you'll need to do that with your local council. They will be able to provide more information, as well as costs and other aspects of the planning process.

Once you have sold your land, there are no guarantees that it will be developed, even if you have planning permission! You should always consult an expert before selling your land - someone who knows how and why to obtain planning permission. Take a look at this page to get started (

We hope this guide to selling land to a developer with or without planning permission has been helpful; get in touch with us today for more information or help selling your land.


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