Introduced by the Planning Act in 2008, the Community Infrastructure Levy (CIL) is a planning charge used by local authorities in England and Wales to help deliver infrastructure to support the development of their area. The tool came into force on 6 April 2010 through the Community Infrastructure Levy Regulations 2010.
Development that creates 100 square metres of floorspace or new dwellings, is liable. The liable amount will depend on the local planning authority charging schedule.
Some developments may be eligible for relief or exemption from the CIL. However, in most cases a Commencement Notice (form 6) must be served prior to the commencement of development, in order for the exemption to apply.
CIL is charged on a per square metre basis, with the rate usually varying according to the proposed use of the floorspace. The rate on new residential floorspace can be as high as £750, highlighting the importance to minimise CIL liability. This can be achieved by maximising the existing floorspace discount or claiming exemptions.
It’s important to remember that existing floorspace must be used for it’s lawful permitted planning purpose for 6 months out of the previous 3 years in order to reduce the CIL liability. This can be difficult to achieve if the property has been bought at auction, used unlawfully or has been derelict.
Planning Insight was recently instructed to submit CIL documentation for a property that had been disused for 2 years, in which the client had extremely limited information on previous occupation.
The office building (over 400 sqm) had previously housed multiple commercial entities in different areas of the building. Importantly, leases in possession of the client did not demonstrate actual occupation of the building.
Planning Insight deployed considerable investigative skills in relation to the matter. This resulted in finding sufficient independent documentation to satisfy the authority that the entire floorspace should be discounted. Thus, the client achieved a saving of over £70,000 against the residential conversion of the building.
If you have any further questions in regards to CIL, contact a member of our team today on 02079934539.