DC Casebook: Housing: Conversion - Flats found to fail floor space standards

An enforcement notice directed against conversion of a house in south London into five flats has been upheld after the living accommodation was judged to be inadequate.

The council had no objection in principle to the change of use. However, it argued that the development had resulted in an over-intensive use of the building and failed to comply with a supplementary planning document specifying minimum areas for bedrooms and other rooms. The appellant claimed that consents granted for additions would allow the flats to be enlarged.

The inspector predicted that the bedrooms were likely to take on the role of bed-sitting rooms, given the very small areas set aside for the kitchens and lounges. He agreed that there were too many residential units in the property and held that extensions should facilitate a more generous allocation of floor space per resident. In upholding the notice, he rejected the nine-month compliance period requested by the appellant, finding that six months would suffice to allow outstanding leases to expire.

DCS Number 100-064-729

Inspector Ian Currie; Written representations

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