If you live in a listed building you will need to be granted Listed Building Consent before getting your windows spray-painted a different colour.
A listed building consent is required for all works of alteration to a listed building including cosmetic works that affect its character. Window painting falls into this bracket.
The only exception would be when the windows are to be painted the same colour. For example, if you wanted your windows painting white and they are white now, you would not need Listed Building Consent because you are not altering the character of the building – you are merely refreshing existing features.
Colour changes ALWAYS require Listed Building Consent. This is because alterations to the character of a property are not allowed without consent.
Anyway, that’s the annoying news. The good news is Listed Building Consent is often granted when the request is reasonable. We have lots of experience in this area and have seen plenty of applications approved.
Colour changes to windows do change the character of a building however they are considered TEMPORARY changes because they are a coating of paint. It isn’t like you are ripping out period sash windows and replacing them with new double glazing. Faced with this, a lot of applications go through just fine.
Seeking advice and applying
We strongly recommend speaking with your local planning authority to discuss the works you would like to carry out. Your local authority will provide advice and help you understand the next steps in the application process.
You can apply for Listed Building consent online at your local planning authority’s website in around 15 minutes. For example, here’s the Kirklees page: Kirklees.
By law, the local authority you apply to must tell you of their decision within 8 weeks of validating your application. If your application is refused, then you can make an appeal and the same timeframe will apply.
Is it worth the hassle in the end?
Listed Building Consent exists to protect beautiful period buildings, not to make your life a hassle. Most applications are approved when requests are reasonable, and we believe that window painting is a reasonable request.
In the end, yes it is worth it. If you want to change the character of your home from the outside, painting the windows a different colour is the best way to go about it. We say go for it — but only after getting Listed Building Consent.