Project type

Change of Use

Transform your premises into retail, residential, nursing homes or other use classes

Multiple landlords and leaseholders are keen to change the use of their land and properties from one class to another but don’t know where to start.

As architects and planning consultants specialising in change of use, we have helped hundreds of landlords, leaseholders and entrepreneurs successfully get planning permission to turn their redundant premises into profit. You can join them too.

The Town and Country Planning (Use Classes) (Amendment) (England) Regulations 2020 classifies land and building ‘use classes’ into the following main categories:

  • Class B2
  • Class B8
  • Class C1
  • Class C2a
  • Class C3
  • Class C4
  • Class E
  • Class F1
  • Class F2
  • Sui generis
  • Agricultural buildings

Learn more: New Use Class Order 2020: Use Class E and the Key Changes Explained [Article]

Unlock your property’s change of use potential

As change of use planning consultants specialising in property conversions, we’ll help you navigate UK planning systems and land as certain changes of use proposal can be done without planning permission, using what are known as permitted development rights.

We’ll confirm whether or not you can utilise permitted development rights for your change of use project and if not, we’ll assess the likelihood of securing planning permission for your proposal and guide you throughout the process.

Secure your change of use planning permission with ease

As architects and planning consultants with extensive experience in change of use projects, we’ve worked extensively with London councils and know exactly what kind of change of use restrictions are likely to be imposed upon your application.

We’ll meticulously prepare your change of use planning drawings and documents needed to submit your application and liaise with planning officers to secure planning consent for your change of use.

Design your ideal change of use layout

Our tailored change of use design service will help you formulate a design concept that matches your tastes and satisfies your list of requirements, whether you’re interested in change of use from E to sui generis – for instance, café to bar or hairdresser to nail bar; E (shop) to C3 (flats); flats (C3) to hotel (C1) or C3 (house) to C4 (HMO).

Change of use projects are not always straightforward but we can manage every stage of the design phase and use our expertise to streamline the process for you.

Take control of your change of use project

Once we’ve secured planning permission for splitting your HMO conversion, we progress to the Technical Design + Building Regulations stage, followed by the Contract Administration + Construction​ Inspection stage, where your idea will be transformed into fruition.

Based on our strong relationships with local authorities, contractors and specialists, we’ve developed a proven approach to help you avoid complications and monitor your costs. Working collaboratively, we’ll design and deliver your change of use project on time and on budget.

Gold drop lighting fixture with grey radiators in the background
Gold drop lighting fixture with grey radiators in the background
The 2020 reform of the use class system offers huge opportunities and new flexibility for commercial landlords and small businesses. Join successful investors who make the most out of it.
Signature of Nicole I. Guler, BA(Hons) MSc MRTPI
Director, Chartered Town Planner
Nicole I. Guler

Director, Chartered Town Planner

Portrait of Nicole I. Guler, BA(Hons) MSc MRTPI
Director, Chartered Town Planner

Change of Use Architects

Changing the use of buildings is crucial for the economy, for the supply of homes and - it has become increasingly clear - for the planet. We need to make sure that as many of the buildings we already have in England keep in productive use.

But in a fast-changing society and a fast-changing business world, it can be hard for slow-moving planning rules to keep up. There's a good reason why, if you are looking for change of use architects, your best bet is to look for a firm that can also handle the planning side of things - like Urbanist Architecture, for instance. That's true whether you are talking about converting shops or offices to homes or homes to shops and offices, a former farm into a business site or a warehouse (B8) to Class E.

It's important to understand that an increasing number of business and other types of property have become "sui generis". This isn't - as many people understandably assume - one big use class. What it means is that each of the many different things referred to as "sui generis" is a use class of its own.

That includes pubs, large HMOs, cinemas, betting shops, takeaways, nightclubs, scrapyards, petrol stations and many more. To change the use to any of these, you will need full planning permission. To change use away from most of these, you will also need full planning permission. For this kind of work, you should work with specialist change of use architects and planning consultants.

One-team integrated approach

We are a multidisciplinary team of architects, planning consultants, interior designers and project managers offering multiple services under one roof. When you work with our firm, you have the support of our entire studio behind you - no matter what.

Ready to unlock the potential of your project?

We specialise in crafting creative design and planning strategies to unlock the hidden potential of developments, secure planning permission and deliver imaginative projects on tricky sites

Write us a message
Decorative image of an architect working