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Thomas Judge
Thomas Judge, solicitor Advocate
Category: UK Property Law
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Hi there, We live in a Victorian end terrace (not listed

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Hi there,

We live in a Victorian end terrace (not listed and not in a conservation area - set of three houses) in Hertfordshire, England - Hertsmere council area.

We are looking to buy next door (the middle house) and knock through two doorways internally from ours, one on the ground floor, and one on the first floor (with appropriate building regs). Externally, we would preferably brick up the middle house front door opening in a style suitable to the property.

We would like to register the houses as one dwelling and get a new council tax banding.

If we sell the house in the future we will divide it into two again (opening up the original external doorway and closing the internal joining doorways) as the properties are likely to be worth more as two than one.

Please could you possibly advise on the following:

Is planning permission needed to convert the two dwellings into one?

What do we need to do for the council to recognise that the two properties are one dwelling to get a council tax re-band?

What is the processes to register the two houses as one (land registry etc.) and then reverse the process to sell as two in the future?

Many thanks in advance for your time and help.
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Planning permission is not required for internal works so you are free to do the knocking through although bearing in mind the wall between the two properties you may wish to speak to a surveyor. Technically you do need planning permission for a change of use so you would need to register the property as to one dwelling. That said you may consider it easier to keep the dual status, particularly as you wish to revert back to in the future. This way you would not need to contact the Land Registry etc
Customer: replied 4 years ago.
Hi there, still a bit confused over this. We have read that we do not need planning permission since changes in 2010? See below:

The April and October changes to legislation mean that from 1 October 2010 a change of use from a dwellinghouse (class C3) to a house in multiple occupation (Class C4) and from a house in multiple occupation to a dwellinghouse is possible under permitted development rights and planning applications are not needed.

Does this apply to our situation? The reason to register as one would be to reduce our council tax bill. Do we just tell them it is one dwelling? Or officially apply for change of use? Although it will still be used as resend housing not business so why is this a change of use?

Many thanks for your time.

Just so you are clear, you do not need planning permission. You would however need to talk to them about the change for the purpose of council tax - that is all.
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