As more people look to improve their homes, it is important we all understand when planning permission is required. This piece will explain when planning permission is required, although most air conditioner machines are compact enough to not require building regulations, larger units might need some kind of permission.

This blog post will also look at what is covered by permitted development rights.


Generally speaking, you do not need planning permission in order to install an air conditioning unit. You may require planning permission for large or noisy air conditioner unit, which is installed externally.

A guide to planning permission

Planning permission involves gaining consent from your local authority for the building work you are having done. Planning permission ensures that buildings and external construction are safe.

Planning permission and your AC unit

For large air conditioner units you might need planning permission, however, this depends entirely on the size and location of the unit.

If your external compressor unit and it makes a loud, disrupting noise, then you make need planning permission. Planning permission is required in this instance as it can become a nuisance to your neighbours. This can be counteracted if you place the unit far enough away from your neighbour’s building.

If the location you wish to install an air conditioner on a conservation area or a listed building, you will need to apply for planning permission.

When you don’t need planning permission

You do not need planning permission for your air conditioner unit if the unit is not installed on a pitched roof and if the external unit is not positioned within one metre from the edge of a flat roof.

Have more questions?

If you have any more questions that you require answers too, Lime base might have the answer. Do not hesitate to contact a member of our team today with your questions.