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The Government raised planning fees this year for the first time in years. However, the online platform of choice for many professionals in the industry, Planning Portal, has introduced an administration fee increasing costs again.

As the Portal is now a private operation there will be an administration fee of £16.67 plus VAT (£20) on all applications that require a fee. If the payment is not made through the portal then it will not be sent to the local planning authority to register.

Of more concern will be that exempt applications (for example free go re-submissions) appear from the guide to still require payment in full. Prior to the LPA confirming it as being entitled to an exemption and the money returned (19/9 UPDATE: The portal replied to our enquiries and confirm that the exemption can be applied at application stage to avoid double payment).

There is an obvious way around these fees, which is to revert to the old fashioned method of filling in an application by hand and posting it to the council with a cheque… who said the modern planning system was not progressive.

On more positive news August brought success to many clients enjoying the summer. Including one who applied to Poole planning for consent to extend before putting their house on the market. Also in London where our fantastic success rate for a national takeaway chain continued in Brent.