Certificate of Compliance with Planning Permission

Certify the compliance of your property with planning permissions prior to selling, with a  Certificate or Opinion on Planning Compliance from HomeCheck


When selling your house, HomeCheck is your ideal choice for certification of compliance with planning permission, across Ireland. All our Civil Engineers and Building Surveyors carry the appropriate insurance and are accredited to an authorised professional body.  They can assist with examining all planning documentation and investigating the property to certify that alterations to an existing property are compliant with planning permission. 

Our team of engineers and surveyors offer up-to-date assessments on the status of alterations or additions to properties that enable sellers to remain compliant and ease the process of selling the property, whereby solicitors often require this documentation. 

If a Certificate of Compliance with Planning Permission is provided as part of the sign-off by the Engineer, Surveyor or Architect involved at the time, this is preferable.  But in many cases, particularly in the past, there was no such oversight and no expert opinion confirming that the modifications to the property comply with planning permission.  In this instance, HomeCheck Engineers and Building Surveyors can provide an Opinion on Planning Compliance to property sellers. 

What is a certificate of compliance in Ireland and do you need one? Is it the same thing as an opinion of compliance? Learn more about these documents below. 


What is an Opinion on Compliance with Planning Permission?

Property owners looking to sell their property usually need to provide their solicitor with a what is usually called an Opinion on Compliance with Planning Permission. This is provided to the buyer as part of the contract documents for the sale.  It is an Opinion provided by an Engineer or Building Surveyor stating whether the property, as built, complies with the historical planning regulations and permissions that apply to the property.   

A Certificate of Compliance with Planning Permission is similar, but usually is issued at the time of construction – either of the original house or apartment, or a subsequent construction phase, normally an extension or renovation.  The Certificate is provided by the Engineer or Surveyor who oversaw the construction work, and often it also includes certification of the construction in relation to Building Regulations. 


What is a Certificate of Compliance?

A Certificate of Compliance with Planning Permission is similar, but usually is issued at the time of construction – either of the original house or apartment, or a subsequent construction phase, normally an extension or renovation.  The Certificate is provided by the Engineer or Surveyor who oversaw the construction work, and often it also includes certification of the construction in relation to Building Regulations. 

Opinion of compliance certificates, conversely, are only issued after building works have been completed.  Where a property has an original Certificate of Compliance, an updated Opinion may be required to cover subsequent extensions or alterations. 

Certificate of Compliance

What Is The Difference Between Certifying To Building Regulations And Certifying To Planning Regulation?

It is important to note that an Engineer or Surveyor’s opinion/certification of compliance is not ex post facto certification of the construction meeting Building Regulations. This means that they cannot certify building works that took place in the past, as much of the work will now be concealed (such as foundations).  They must have been involved in the planning and building phases of construction and supervision of the works is at the time in order to certify to Building Regulations.   

Unlike Planning Permission which is specific to the property and applies indefinitely, Building Regulations change over time.  A house built in the 1950s, extended in the late 1990s and renovated in the 2010s will have a variety of standards that apply.  The untouched original elements predate any Building Regulations, the works carried out in the late 1990s will be subject to the Regulations of that time and the most recent works will be subject to the Regulations that applied in 2010 – none of which may match current building standards.  There is no obligation on a seller to meet current Building Regulations.  There is merely an obligation to endeavour to meet current Building Regulations where possible. 


How to Obtain an Opinion on Compliance with Planning Permission

To obtain a certificate of compliance with planning permissions and building regulations, the property owner must retain a chartered civil engineer or building surveyor to review the planning history of the property and compare it to the property on the ground. 

The most common reason to obtain a certificate of compliance in Ireland is to provide a buyer with an independent expert opinion on the compliance or features that are not fully compliant with the property they are looking to buy.  Non-compliance with planning permission is not necessarily an immovable obstacle to a sale.  Buyers and their conveyancing solicitors are primarily looking for clarity. 


Who Issues an Opinion on Compliance with Planning Permission?

Certificates of compliance can only be issued by a chartered civil engineer, architect, or building surveyor. HomeCheck employs a skilled team of engineers/surveyors that specialise in these matters. 

Enacted in January 2014 under statutory law, only competent and qualified professionals such as chartered engineers can issue a certificate of compliance in Ireland. On account of the necessity of certificates of compliance for many alterations, choose a professional team of engineers and building surveyors such as HomeCheck. 



Take a look at what our clients say about us:


….We received a very comprehensive survey from the engineer. We would highly recommend HomeCheck for peace of mind before purchasing a property. Engineers are highly qualified and the report was done quickly and thoroughly….- Aideen

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Alterations that require Compliance with Planning Permission


External facades

Most alterations to the front-facing external facade of a building require planning permission and including material aesthetic changes to the appearance of the structure. Relatively minor alterations typically do not require planning permissions. 


Side extensions 

Extensions on the side of the structure typically require planning permission. If the extension is constructed anywhere beyond the rear building line forward, permission is required. Side extensions should always be built with at least two meters of distance from the boundary line. 


Rear extensions 

Rear extensions may not require any planning permissions so long as they are below a certain size, although there are many specific circumstances under which planning permissions are required. An engineer is therefore required to confirm that the extension status falls under ‘Exempted Development’.  


How Much Does a Certificate of Compliance Cost?

The total cost of obtaining a certificate of compliance with building regulations depends on factors such as the type and complexity of the project. New builds may cost more than minor alterations, for example. Opinion of compliance costs likewise varies since they only take place after construction has finished. 

At HomeCheck, clients can expect the following approximate costs for an Opinion on Planning Compliance: 


A one-off house: from €300 ex VAT


An apartment or other dwelling in a multi-unit building: from €350 ex VAT 


A house in an estate: from €350 ex VAT

To obtain a more accurate estimate for your property, please request a free, no-obligation quote, below.


Why Pick HomeCheck?



With decades of professional engineering experience and a specialisation in services related to residential property conveyancing, HomeCheck is the ideal choice for certificates and opinions of compliance across Ireland for those selling their house or apartment. Our expertise in this specific, high-demand field is second to none. 


Exclusively focus on surveys

HomeCheck exclusively provides residential property surveys and other services for home buyers and sellers, including new land registry maps, opinions of compliance with planning permission by qualified and chartered engineers and surveyors in Ireland. Our unique focus allows us to invest our resources into providing exceptional service at affordable prices. 


Fantastic communications  

We pride ourselves on offering the best possible customer service for each and every project we undertake, which includes timely and professional communications.  

Although our pre-purchase survey processes involve technical jargon, our clear, easy-to-read reports are extremely straightforward for customers, building contractors, and selling agents. This allows for any identified problems to be rectified. 


Areas we cover

Property survey Ireland
HomeCheck service area

HomeCheck HQ is in Galway City, however, our team of Engineers and Building Surveyors are based across Ireland and cover on properties anywhere from north Mayo, down to Limerick and across Connacht, the Midlands over as far as Dublin. 

Our property surveys and the other services we provide are available  

Galway, Clare, Limerick, Mayo, Roscommon, Longford, Westmeath, Offaly, Dublin and Kildare and parts of surrounding counties Tipperary, Meath and Wicklow. We also cover the border area counties of Donegal, Leitrim, Cavan and Monaghan. 


Request a Certificate of Compliance from HomeCheck 


HomeCheck offers affordable, high-quality certificates and opinions of compliance that certify the status of works in progress or completed works on a residential property, all with fast turnaround times and friendly customer service. 

Enquire with a friendly member of our team today and request a free, no-obligation quote.



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