Planning exemption for conversion of vacant pubs into homes extended

Planning exemption for conversion of vacant pubs into homes extended

Darragh O'Brien

Regulations allowing for vacant pubs to be converted into homes without planning permission have been extended until 2025.

Nearly 1,400 vacant pubs have been converted into homes since the exemption was introduced in 2018, and it will now be extended until the end of 2025.

The pub’s license must have lapsed to allow for its conversion into homes, and a limit of nine residential units can be produced under an exempted development.

Housing minister Darragh O’Brien said: “Turning vacant properties into occupied homes is a major element of Housing for All. Unfortunately towns and villages across the country have seen pubs close their doors for the last time in recent years, not least over the last two years.

“This new planning regulation will ease the planning burden for those who want to convert small and medium-sized pubs that are no longer viable and have ceased to operate, into residential housing.

“The regulations will also continue to make it easier to get other forms of vacant commercial premises, including vacant spaces over ground floor premises, back into use for residential purposes such as ‘over the shop’ living.”

Peter Burke, minister of state for planning and local government, added: “Since 2018, almost 1,400 homes have been provided from exempting the conversion of certain vacant commercial premises. I believe there is great potential for even more vacant properties to be converted into residential units through these regulations.”

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