With more of us spending more time at home since the pandemic, there has been an unprecedented rise in home improvements and renovations in the UK, as homeowners look to improve their living space with indoor and outdoor features such as artificial grass, exercise zones, and carports.
If you are thinking about upgrading your property with a carport and would like to find out more about costs and building regulations, you’ll find all the information you need in this fully-comprehensive guide.
Carports are a relatively inexpensive home improvement that can add value to your property while protecting your wheels against harsh weather conditions. They are easy to install and ideal for DIY projects and, if installed correctly, they can transform an used area into a fully-functioning part of the home. Other advantages of building a carport include:
1. Additional Outdoor Space: It’s something we could all use more of during lockdown, and with a carport, you’ll have a sheltered area that you can use for outdoor exercising, summer BBQs, and entertaining children when the weather prevents them from playing in the garden.
2. Security: With a carport, you can park your car securely next to your home and reduce the risk of theft and vandalism. It’s much safer than on-street parking, and it could even help reduce your car insurance premiums.
3. Protection Against The Elements: We’re used to bad weather in the UK, and while most cars are designed to withstand exposure to the elements, harsh UV rays, hail, and persistent rust-inducing rains can have a damaging effect on car paintwork. With a carport, you can protect your vehicles year-round, whatever the weather.
4. Multipurpose Parking Area: You can park just about anything in your carport, including caravans, trailers, motorbikes, and boats. They are highly versatile and ideal for homes with two or more vehicles.
5. Aesthetically Pleasing: You can push the boundaries of design with a carport and create a feature that is both practical and pleasing to the eye. You can use steel, aluminium, wood or a mix of all three, and build a carport that complements your home.
6. Increased Property Value: You could add up to 5 per cent to the value of your home by installing a securing parking area such as a carport.
7. Convenient: With no doors to open and close, carports provide a quick and convenient parking solution. You can drive straight in when you come home from work at the end of a long day, and you’ll never have to worry about scraping leaves or snow off your car when you are in a hurry.
8. Extra Storage: If you are short on outdoor storage space, a carport could be the perfect solution. You can use it to store garden furniture during the winter months, along with bulky sports accessories such as bikes, surfboards, and skis.
9. No Foundations Necessary: You can install a carport on almost any surface including, gravel cement, and paving stones, with no foundations required. They are relatively easy to erect, and a single installation could last a lifetime.
As with most things in life, there are rules and regulations to adhere to when installing a carport in the UK, but thankfully, you do not need building regulations approval. Carports, much like sheds, greenhouses, and summer houses fall within the ‘outbuildings’ category set out in Schedule 2 of the Buildings Regulations, and providing your plans meet the following guidelines, you will not need to apply for approval:
1. The floor area of your carport does not exceed 30 square metres
2. Your carport is a single storey building with a maximum overall height of no more than 4 metres
3. It is open on at least two sides
If your carport plans do not meet the above criteria, contact your local authority building control body (BCB) or an approved private BCB inspector for further advice.
Do I Need Planning Permission For A Carport?
Contrary to popular belief, building regulations and planning permission are not the same. Building regulations set standards for health and safety in construction while planning permission covers consideration such as appearance, landscaping, and environmental impact.
You will not need to apply for planning permission for a carport if it is:
1. Used for domestic purposes only
2. Built within the boundaries of your property
3. Less than half the size of the total area of your property (excluding your house)
4. Not built on the front or side of your home that faces onto a road
5. No higher than 4 metres tall
Different rules apply if you want to build a carport on a listed building or within a World Heritage Site or National Park. To install a carport in either of these circumstances, you will likely need to submit a planning application for Listed Building Consent. Your local planning office will be able to provide you with more information.
Contact your local Carports designer, manufacturer, and installer to find out how much it will cost to upgrade your family home or rental property with the perfect carport canopy.