Can I let a log cabin in my garden?

Can I let a log cabin in my garden?

15:04 PM, 16th June 2014, About 8 years ago 21

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I have a 2 bed flat with an 85ft garden that has just become available for let. Before I re-let the property for £950 pcm, I was thinking about installing a log cabin at the bottom the garden and renting this out as a studio flat with small garden for £550pcm including bills. Can I let a log cabin in my garden

The log cabin would have its own access and there would be a fence between both properties. The existing flat would still have a 45ft garden and will still rent out for £950 pcm but this time including water, sewage and electric.

The cost to install and fit out log cabin is £6k and a further £3k to separate electric and water which can be done at a later date, hence I would need to pay all bills on both lets.

The question is……am I allowed to do this?

Would I need to inform council, building regs, freeholder of land and the 4 other flat owners?





by Mark Alexander

19:15 PM, 16th June 2014, About 8 years ago

Reply to the comment left by "Vanessa Warwick" at "16/06/2014 - 18:53":

Very enterprising Vanessa, I'm impressed 🙂

by Sian Wyatt

21:16 PM, 16th June 2014, About 8 years ago

This is all very interesting as I am currently looking at buying a 3/4 bedroom house. It has a double garage with an adjoining office about 3m2. It is insulated to a very high standard and would make a lovely bedroom. I would put a shower room and toilet in the garage but the resident would have to use the kitchen in the main house, so it would not be a self contained unit.

I imagine to do this properly I would need planning permission for the shower room and building regs for the plumbing. I dont think I would have a problem if it was for a granny annex, but not sure if I just want another bedroom to let out....

Any ideas?

by matchmade

8:52 AM, 17th June 2014, About 8 years ago

Reply to the comment left by "Edna " at "16/06/2014 - 21:16":

Hi Edna,

Do you mean 30m2, though this seems large, because 3m2 seems impossibly small for a bedroom: in imperial measurements that's 4 foot x 8 foot. The shower room and toilet in the uninsulated garage sound a bit grim to me, especially in winter, so could they not be added to the office?

I've never encountered someone applying for planning permission to install just a toilet and shower room in an outbuilding. I think as long as you are not enlarging the curtilage of the building and falling foul of the new rules on permitted development (e.g. 1m proximity to a neighbour), I don't think you need planning permission. You will however still need to conform to building regulations and have the installation inspected for hygiene, ventilation, fire safety etc. The objection by planners to toilets and shower rooms is not about them being inside home offices, per se, but about the intended use of the outbuilding for permanent accommodation.

A couple of links that comment usefully on this issue, chosen after a Google search: and

As regards cooking facilities: as long as people are only staying on a temporary basis, could you not just supply a small fridge, some storage, a microwave, kettle, and maybe a hotplate or sandwich maker in the office? This would save the resident trailing into the house and the other residents having to put up with a succession of strangers in their kitchen. It would of course make sense to install a smoke alarm as well, wired into the office's electrics.

by matchmade

9:01 AM, 17th June 2014, About 8 years ago

Reply to the comment left by "Mark Alexander" at "16/06/2014 - 19:15":

Yes, really impressive Vanessa - a nice little earner given that you have the space and the vehicle. There is strong demand for this sort of overnight-stay facility, because even with the advent of cheap motels like Travellodge, they are not that cheap, especially if you are staying for a week or two on a work contract or job-hunting. The same applies with B&Bs: £50 a night is the absolute minimum in my experience.

I think the Government is legislating in this area to make it easier for people to rent out their spare rooms like this. What's your approach as regards fire safety, as that's often the objection from the planners over renting-out converted garages and home offices, even on an occasional basis? Or are temporary structures like motorhomes and caravans exempt from the need for smoke alarms?

by Sian Wyatt

7:32 AM, 20th June 2014, About 8 years ago

Reply to the comment left by "Tony Atkins" at "17/06/2014 - 08:52":

Hi Tony

Thank you for those links - very interesting! The studio is 3 x 3m not 3m2.... Sorry!

The garage is already insulated and there is a door from the garage to the studio, and I would make it nice and not grim!

Will keep thinking about this one...



by Mandy Thomson

9:30 AM, 21st June 2014, About 8 years ago

Reply to the comment left by "Edna " at "20/06/2014 - 07:32":

Hi Edna

I've been reading this whole post with interest - I like Vanessa's strategy with the caravan!
I thought I'd better jump in, as if you go down the road of getting a lodger (which is what someone sharing any actual living accommodation would be), have you considered whether you're ready for this impact on your day to day life? With a lodger, you're not simply letting, you're sharing a home. As @Tony Atkins has touched on, the lodger might be using your kitchen at a time when you need it yourself, or when you just want your privacy and don't want to have to interact with someone outside your immediate household. There's also other ways a lodger might impact on your day to day life, for example, having their partner staying nights. Had you considered how the lodger will interact with you and do you have a strategy to deal with it?
If you have factored all this into your plans, it sounds like a really good idea and I wish you luck!

by Robert Mellors

23:37 PM, 2nd July 2015, About 7 years ago

Just found this thread again (after sending a new suggested thread quite similar).

If parking a caravan in the garden of a HMO, then as a moveable structure I believe it does not require planning permission.

If it is used as an extra room to the HMO then again it does not need planning permission, BUT may affect whether the HMO requires a licence (and I guess this is unlikely to be granted if one of the rooms is a caravan).

If it is a moveable structure (caravan) that is fully self contained and is rented out as a separate home, then again I believe that it requires planning permission.

However, Vanessa has indicated that if it is let on a short-term basis, when the person has a home elsewhere, then it does not become a "home" and again does not require planning permission. BUT, what is the planning permission situation if the person renting it, short-term, does NOT have a home elsewhere? Also, what counts as "short-term"?

If, having let out a caravan in a garden, it transpires that planning permission is required, then what are the consequences of this? Would it simply be to tow the caravan away (after all the appeals etc have failed), or is there a penalty/fine for having let it in the first place?

by Alan Loughlin

17:51 PM, 3rd July 2015, About 6 years ago

it is going to make the place like a shanty town, this sort of thing is what brings genuine landlords into disrepute.

by Robert Mellors

21:28 PM, 3rd July 2015, About 6 years ago

Reply to the comment left by "Alan Loughlin" at "03/07/2015 - 17:51":

Vanessa is already doing this (letting a , and Mark praised her on her being so enterprising, he said it was impressive, and Tony and others also seemed to like the idea. I think they are all "genuine landlords" and they are not bringing landlords into disrepute at all.

by Alan Loughlin

21:34 PM, 3rd July 2015, About 6 years ago

making the place a doss house is doing just that.

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