When we invest in a property, we usually want to turn it into a space that is truly individual to us, from the moment you look at the exterior of the property, and all the way through the property. However, if you have invested in a listed property, you might find that there will be a couple of barriers to the changes that you can make. It can be a bit of a minefield, so we have pulled together some information that you might want to consider before you make any changes.
What is a listed property?
Firstly, it might be useful to understand what a listed property is, however, if you have already purchased one, you will already know that yours is.
A building is “listed” to preserve its character. This means that the changes that can be made are very limited, and those that you can make must fall in line with the existing features. Being a listed property can impact not only external features but also internal features.
The three categories of listing include:
Grade I. This is for buildings of outstanding national architectural or historical interest.
Grade II. This covers buildings that have particular significance of greater than just local interest.
Grade II. This includes buildings of special historic or architectural interest.
How easily can I make a change?
Unfortunately, it is not that easy to make changes to your listed building. The first place to start is by inspecting the reasons as to why the building has been listed in the first place. This means that the features listed will be pretty much out of bounds in terms of changes or modernisation (such as some stating windows, which means that you cannot upgrade single pane for double glazing etc).
The changes you can make will be greatly impacted by the level of the grade (as mentioned above) the higher the grade the less likely you will be able to make any great changes to the building as a whole.
The best place to find information on what you can and cannot change on your property is to organise a meeting with your local council’s conservation officer. They are best placed to advise you on what can and cannot be done and what you need to do in order to secure consent. For example, you will require listed building consent before making any alterations and may need planning permission as well.
You may find that it is easier to build a completely new extension to your property, providing it does not make any alterations to the existing features than to add a satellite dish.
If you have not already purchased your listed property, we advise that you make these considerations before your purchase to ensure that you can make the changes you desire.
Windows and Doors
Previously, it was noted that you could not make changes to your doors and windows on a listed property as this would alter the exterior appearance of the building. However, with the introduction of advanced technology, combined with bespoke joinery, this is now easier to change than ever before. With a number of councils now agreeing to alterations that allow double glazing, providing it meets a set of criteria, including maintaining the original appearance (which is made easy by investing in bespoke joinery).
If you are planning on undertaking any bespoke alterations to your listed property, we strongly advise you to use experienced experts, such as Brinard Joinery, to ensure that you can meet the limitations as set out by your local council’s conservation officer, whilst also offering you the best energy-saving options we possibly can.
For more information on bespoke joinery for your listed property please contact a member of our expert team today who will be happy to assist you. You might also be interested in our blog on maintaining period features on your property.