Two thirds of property finance brokers in favour of reviewing PDR regulations

67% of property finance brokers responding to United Trust Bank’s most recent Broker Sentiment Poll, believe that regulations surrounding Permitted Development Rights (PDR) should be reviewed to prevent unsuitable developments.

Conversely, 33% believe PDR regulations are fine as they are and none suggested PDR should be scrapped.

Property finance brokers – with which of the following statements do you agree? 

Regulations around PDR should be reviewed to prevent unsuitable developments 67%
Regulations around PDR are fine as they are 33%
PDR should be scrapped 0%

Much of the recent criticism of PDR developments has focused on the size of the units some of the schemes create. 43% of brokers responding to the survey felt that the 37m2 minimum floor area of a new home set out in the Technical Housing Standards may be too small. However, 57% agreed that units smaller than 37m2, so called ‘micro homes’, could still be good homes if they are well designed.

Nearly a quarter (24%) of brokers believe that minimum floor areas of new and PDR homes should be mandatory rather than ‘standards’ which developers can choose to ignore.

 Broker views on ‘micro homes’

Homes smaller than 37m square can still be good homes if they’re well designed 57%
The 37m square minimum floor area for a new home set out in the Technical Housing Standards is too small 43%
Minimum floor areas on permitted development and new builds should be mandatory rather than just standards which can be side stepped. 24%
Micro-homes can play an important role in tackling the UK’s housing shortage 23%


Paul Turton, Head of Sales – Property Development, commented:

“Permitted development enables developers to create exciting and often affordable places to live in mainly urban areas – exactly the kinds of locations where new homes are most needed. According to the Government’s Net Additional Dwellings data, PDR enabled the creation of around 45,000 new dwellings between 2015 and the end of November 2018 so it is an important channel for the provision of the new homes the country so badly needs.

“Although homes created under PDR are not subject to the same planning rules as new build, we believe that the majority of PDR developers wish to create new homes they can be proud of. A very small minority, who may exploit sites and over develop them, have potential to cast the whole sector in a bad light and we must be careful not to discourage or obstruct responsible developers for the sake of a few bad apples.

“Micro homes, utilising clever design and technology to maximise living space, can be affordable and enjoyable places to live. Rather than setting prescriptive rules, the challenge for the planning system moving forward is to make it harder for less scrupulous developers to create poor homes of any kind without also making it more difficult for good, responsible developers to create high quality places to live.”