Some Crucial Things to Know About Planning for Temporary Buildings

Temporary buildings offer reliable space solutions at an affordable cost and can be erected in a short time. This has made them highly popular with companies in multiple sectors in the UK and other parts of the world.

Although these structures are generally meant to be used for a short period—mostly between 3 months and 3 years, some can still be in a good condition even beyond 3 years. However, even when they are for short-term use, their users will still need to seek planning permission for them in some cases.

There is a set of guidelines in the UK that regulate the planning process for temporary buildings. This helps to ensure they are structurally sound and safe for occupation and will be suitable for their intended use.

Here are some of the key things you need to understand about planning for temporary buildings:

When is it necessary to do planning for temporary buildings?

Some of the instances, when it is required to do planning for temporary structures, include:

  1. Planning permission is required for temporary buildings when they will remain in place for over 28 days and/or exceed an area of 100 m2.
  2. You need to get planning permission if the temporary structure comes will be located less than 5 m from your site’s boundary
  3. If the floor area of the building surpasses 25% of your site’s entire available area
  4. If the temporary structure is an extension and exceeds 25% of the floor area of the initial structure.
  5. The structure significantly minimizes the space available for vehicle parking or manoeuvring

In which instances is it not necessary to apply planning permission for temporary buildings?

It is not always that you need to plan for temporary buildings. Some of the cases where you don’t have to bother with planning permission for temporary structures include:

  1. If the building occupies less than 100 m2 floor space and is not to remain erected for more than 28 days
  2. If the structure is an extension to an existing building and satisfies the following conditions, even when it will be in use for a longer period:
  • The height of the extension does not exceed the original structure’s height
  • The structure is not more than 25% of the original building’s size by volume
  • The temporary building (extension) is directly intended to fulfil the purpose of the original structure

Why consider hiring experts to help with planning for temporary buildings?

Although you can handle the planning process for a temporary building yourself, it would be best to hire or consult experts, and you can try here to reach one of the best temporary building experts. They can offer you guidance on planning permission for the non-permanent structures.

Here are some of the reasons you should work with experts when installing temporary buildings:

  • They have the knowledge and experience in planning for temporary buildings and are acquainted with the guidelines and regulations that need to be followed to ensure your structure is both fit for the intended purpose and safe.
  • They are skilled project managers so they will ensure your temporary structure installation is completed within the allocated budget and timeline.
  • Besides handling the planning permission phase, they will assist with the design and construction of your structure so that its structurally sound, safe and meets your needs.
  • The experts also help with site selection and planning taking into account such things as accessibility, safety and the various utilities.


Businesses that need space for a short period can greatly benefit from temporary buildings. However, it’s crucial to seek guidance before erecting a temporary building to establish if you will be required to apply for planning permission. You should consider hiring experts to help you with planning for temporary buildings, and other issues related to these structures. Otherwise, you may be forced to pull down your structure and pay fines if your structure needed planning permission and you didn’t apply for it.