Home owners in England will be entitled to add up to two storeys to the height of their home via a fast-tracked planning process starting in September.
Housing Secretary Robert Jenrick claims this will help to reduce pressure to build on greenfield sites and deliver more homes that fit the character of their local area.
Full planning consent will no longer be required to demolish or rebuild unused buildings as homes or commercial and retail properties.
Shops no longer in use will also be able to be converted into housing without a full planning application. It means that unused commercial properties can be quickly repurposed to support the growing need for housing.
The Ministry of Housing, Communities and Local Government says this will provide much-needed new homes and revitalise town centres across England.
“These changes will help transform boarded up, unused buildings safely into high-quality homes at the heart of their communities” says Jenrick.
“It will mean that families can add up to two storeys to their home, providing much needed additional space for children or elderly relatives as their household grows” he continues.
MHCLG says pubs, libraries, village shops, and other buildings essential to communities will not be covered by these flexibilities, “recognising these form part of the fabric of areas.”