LBC (South) works with London Building Control Ltd, Corporate Approved Inspectors, who are one of the leading providers for certifying residential buildings under the Building Regulations. Together we have many years’ experience in the industry working on thousands of houses, lofts and extensions.
The following notes concern building control for domestic buildings: extensions, loft conversions and houses.
For Flats, Commercial and ‘Other Residential’ – nursing homes etc – see the Commercial Building section; Public buildings, such as Schools and Health Care usually have their own government guidance which should be followed).
Houses in Multiple Occupation (HMO’s) with over 6 residents should follow the guidance for ‘Commercial’ and ‘Other Residential’ etc; where there are 6 or fewer residents it can be treated similar to a house; however the Fire Authority will be consulted for all HMO’s.
Most homes only need a simple smoke detection system with detectors in landings and halls. Fire doors are usually needed around stairwells, with a protected corridor to an exit. Where there are open plan arrangements, such as stairs open directly into lounges, more care is needed as a fire could spread upstairs and cut off escape from the bedrooms. Extra detection will be needed along with other measures such as sprinklers or mist systems and separating off the stairs in some way. Please contact our technical team for further advice.
New dwellings require energy assessment ‘SAP’ calculations. Extensions with large amounts of glazing may also require a SAP calculation to ensure compliance with the regulations to reduce heat loss and improve energy conservation. Independent Annexes will also be required to submit a SAP/EPC.
Energy Performance Certificates (EPC’s) are required alongside the SAP calculations for new dwellings at end of works and an air tightness test as part of ensuring energy efficiency.
Access for the disabled
Access and facilities for the disabled need to be considered; a level entrance is usually required for new houses, together with a toilet on the entrance storey (door opening outwards), additional ‘optional requirements’ my be required in your planning conditions.
On occasions the Local Authority planning department may ask for additional items under ‘optional requirements’. These are requirements to further improve water usage efficiency or to provide better provisions for the disabled (such as a covered entrance, more space in bedrooms and additional requirements for bathrooms).
Acoustic testing is required for all new dwellings.
Often structural calculations are required in support of the design – such as for steel beams in lofts or over new openings.