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"Locals only" rule for Planning

When you want to move back to where you came from, is it easier to get planning permission when you have land from your parents?

This listener is referring to the policy of some planning authorities that they will only grant planning permission to “local people”. 

The answer depends on how long you were away and what you were doing while you were away. 

Generally the policy of the planning authority is that if a local person is in need of housing and wants to remain in the locality, then they will get planning permission.  But if, for example, they wanted to build a house just for investment to let to somebody else, they will almost certainly not get planning permission under this rule.

To give an example – if the son or daughter of a farmer were to go away for four years to college and then come back and want to work and live in the area – this would likely satisfy the planning policies.  If, however, they were living elsewhere and wanted to build a holiday home on the land, I would think that would be harder.

My advice to this listener is that he or she is going to engage the services of an architect at some stage to handle the planning application and the architect should be consulted now on these issues.

I cannot overemphasise the importance of engaging an architect who is fully aware of the policies of the local authority and has a high rate of success in dealing with these “locals only” planning applications.

The issues raised in the answer to this NewsTalk listener's question are dealt with in a general way as can only be the case on live radio. Before relying on the advice given in this answer, whether you heard the broadcast or are for the first time reading the issues here please do not rely on the broad advice given. For a detailed professional opinion please consult a qualified legal advisor and for further details read our disclaimer on the Home Page.

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