sam nico
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Working from home

Working from home

Just become a victim of landlord rent hike and would like to move my office to my log cabin at the back of my garden. It's a largish insolated log cabin big enough for six desks and some storage area, but my concern is whether it would be allowable for me to conduct business from here with four members of staff. My local council have been very unhelpful in that they are only concerned with planning permission, but I'm not building anything just want to know if I have to apply for change of use to commercial use or if I'm ok to carry on?

Does anyone else work from home with more than one member of staff and did they have any issues....?

any advice will be useful..

Many thanks


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04th Feb 2013 12:54


Check your home insurance policy for exclusions: you may find that if you have staff or customers visiting your home, theft/damage is only covered if by forced entry

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04th Feb 2013 13:51

Insurance x 2

My home insurers cancelled my policy when they found out I had clients visit my home, despite the fact that the MLO regs mean they have to prove exactly who they are.

Sainbury's bank took me on with no problem.

I've worked from home for years, and used to worry that I'd get assessed for business rates, but I've dealt with the local council many times, and it's never come up.



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to lionofludesch
04th Feb 2013 14:32

Thank you for your you have staff working from your home office and if so how many do you have? My issue is not business rates but the permission to do this, ie, working from an outbuilding in my residential home with four members of staff...


thank you for your response

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04th Feb 2013 14:31

Practical concerns

1. Does you log cabin have the facilities, particulary toilets to accomodate your four staff? If not, would they and would you be comfortable with them all using the ones you share with your family?

2. Assuming the cabin was not designed as an office environment, have you considered how much work will be required to get the heating, lighting, electric supply etc up to a reasonable standard?

3. Have you room for parking for four staff members plus visitors? - Room means that the first person into work isn't stuck there until everybody else leaves too.





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to Moonlightshadow
04th Feb 2013 14:53

Many thanks for your reply,


Yes there would be a separate toilet and kitchern area for staff to use at the side of the house and there is parking for seven cars outside the property.The cabin is quite comfortable with appropriate lighting and heating, but my concern is, would the appropriate authorities, such as council, allow this operation...working from home with four members of staff...there doesn't seem to be any guideance on this issue...?



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04th Feb 2013 14:47

Just because you can does not mean you should

Aside from the insurance and local authority issues, I am not aware of any one else's permission you require.

That said, I would still consider it very carefully, it may not present the savings you expect.


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04th Feb 2013 15:13

Planning permission

The reason your local council are being unhelpful and are only concerned with planning permission is that you may need planning permission for the change of use, even though you're not building anything.

That is the only local authority issue.  If they grant planning permission or it isn't needed then you're sorted.  If they don't, the either you can't use it for anything other than the better enjoyment of your house, or you'll have to take it down (meaning that you can't use it for anything).

If it needs planning permission for the change of use and it is granted, it will probably be treated as a separate herediment, meaning that it will become liable to business rates.


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04th Feb 2013 15:16

Have you discussed this with your staff?

I can see no reason (unless you live in any area with a particularly pernicious council) why you should have any issues at all although it does cross my mind that you may like to have the cabin checked over by the Fire Brigade - again, assuming the cabin was not designed as offices you may need to have modifications - fire doors etc.

If I were a member of your staff, I can't say I would be thrilled about having to take an umbrella to answer a call of nature though.



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13th Mar 2013 22:46

log cabin

Do you mind if I ask where you bought the log cabin?

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