Maisonette and Flat

A flat is a dwelling place which usually comprises several rooms on one floor, within a building that has a shared entrance. 

A maisonette is similar to a flat, usually within a house but has its own private entrance and can be more than one floor.

Planning Permission

There are rights within the planning legislation that permits certain types of works or uses subject to conditions.

The Town and Country Planning (General Permitted Development) (England) Order 2015, Part 1, Schedule 2 permits enlargement, improvement or other alteration to a dwellinghouse without planning permission. 

Flats and maisonettes do not benefit from permitted development rights. 

Although there is no clear particular reason why there is a difference, one of the reasons could be that Parliament wants Local Authorities to have extra control over what can be developed for flats and maisonettes, as they may perceive them to differ from normal standard houses where there could be more flexibility for home improvements and where the impact of the proposed development could be acceptable in terms of planning.

Party Wall

Living in a flat or maisonette usually comprises sharing a wall with a neighbour. In such instances, a party wall agreement may need to be completed with your neighbours. This is to enable owners to carry out works whilst protecting their neighbours and avoiding necessary inconveniences and avoid disputes in advance of proposed works. 


It is common that a flat and maisonette may be under leasehold ownership. If so, it would usually require consent from the freeholder to carry out any work to the building.

Flats and maisonettes do not benefit from permitted development rights.


Although you can’t do some building works to your flat or maisonette under permitted development, you can still obtain planning permission. To check the likeness of whether planning permission would be approved, you can complete a pre-assessment before investing in submitting an application to the council.