Planning for a Home Improvement or Extension in 2023

With the winter evenings drawing in and the weather taking a turn for the worse, this time of the year is not a great one for starting a new building project. That said, it’s definitely a good time to start planning for next year’s big build. Whether you’re looking to build a home extension, a dormer loft conversion, or anything else, the process is going to take time (22 to 40 weeks is considered a fair estimate).

That means any plans you begin now should be ready to come into fruition in the summer of 2023. That’s the perfect time to embark on a construction project, with longer days and better weather delivering the ideal working environment for your builders and contractors.

So what can you expect along the way? In this article, we look at some of the stages you will need to complete between now and then.

Get a Quote

There’s no point starting a project without some idea of what it’s going to cost. Fortunately for Plans 2 Extend customers, they can access our custom quote generator online, where they can produce a realistic estimate for the amount of planning work required on each new extension or conversion. What’s more, with our online portal, you can keep tabs on your project as it passes through each major checkpoint on its way to completion.

Online Quote Calculator - Design & Planning

Your Ideas

The design phase tends to last around 2-4 weeks and covers everything from your initial consultation to draft drawings of the proposed build. While the drawings are being made, we will arrange for a full site survey and make preparations to submit planning applications.


The planning phase can be as much as 4 times longer than the design phase—anything from 10 to 14 weeks. This is where we go back and forth between our designers and your Local Authority, submitting our designs, amending them based on feedback, and then submitting them again, constantly tweaking them until they are approved. The reason this phase takes so long is the backlog experienced by most local councils.

Technical Elements

It’s not just the council that needs to approve your design. Building control will also need to see detailed technical drawings of the plan prior to approving it for construction. Once planning permission is granted, it takes between 4 and 5 weeks to prepare and produce a formal set of technical drawings for Building Control to consider. If you submit to a private firm, you can expect a response in a couple of weeks (albeit for a larger fee). If you choose to submit through the council’s Building Control department, you might be waiting another six weeks on top.

Working with Builders

With planning permission granted and building control approved, it’s time to speak to contractors, builders, and other associated tradespeople to get quotes for the work itself. Of course, if you’re progressing your project through Plans 2 Extend, you can handle this part of the process through our bespoke portal, where qualified, experienced, and (above all) trusted contractors will be able to furnish you with accurate quotes based on our own calculations. With our help, this phase might take around four weeks — perhaps double that if you attempt it on your own.

Breaking Ground

As you can see, it takes a lot of time and a lot of effort to reach the point where your contractors can begin the physical build, but it’s time well spent when you see them breaking ground for the first time. While the process from the initial design to the final build will take months, much of that is involved in liaising between council departments, workers, surveyors, and so on. With Plans 2 Extend on your side, you will be able to track these developments through our portal and barely notice the passage of time until things are ready to get moving.

Get in Touch

If you want a major build completing for the summer of 2023, you need to start the planning process as soon as possible. Contact Plans 2 Extend today on 01942 466 031, or send an email to and arrange a free consultation with one of our experienced builders.

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