We often hear ‘Mr X is so lucky, whenever there is any development it is always on his land!’ In reality there is nothing lucky about it, the land has most likely been promoted through the local plan process for many years and often at great expense before planning permission is finally granted. The coalition government introduce the National Planning Policy Framework (NPPF) in 2012 with the presumption in favour of sustainable development with the aim of simplifying the planning process – there has been little evidence that this has been successful to date!
The planning system is generally run by local authorities who have a planning policy department and a development control department. The policy department set the local rules and the development control department interpret the rules. This is a very simplified explanation of a system where some local authorities come together as unitary authorities, for example in Shropshire or policy departments come together for a group of authorities as is the case with the North Northamptonshire Joint Planning Unit encompassing Corby Borough Council, Kettering Borough Council, the Borough Council of Wellingborough and East Northamptonshire District Council.
Knowing who to talk to about development policy and the best way to promote your land is only the start, the process can be long and expensive and in many circumstances, it can be beneficial to get a developer or promoter to assist with the process which can significantly reduce the risk to the landowner.
These developers usually require either an option agreement or a promotion agreement which while similar have some fundamental differences. Both can be suitable in different circumstances but understanding which of the two is most suitable and the terms that a landowner can achieve are key to getting best value.
If you have a piece of land that you think might be suitable for development, either now or at some point in the future, please get in touch and we will in the first instance, carry out a free, no obligation appraisal and offer you advice on how best to proceed with the site. Whether you want to promote the site yourself or be introduced to a third party we can help get you the best value for your land.