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Running a business from your council home

If you think that you may be running a business or are thinking about starting one from your council home, you must contact us.

What is meant by a business use?

It generally means that you:

  • produce something or provide a service which is not only for your own or your family's use
  • get some kind of payment for your product, produce or service

Why does the council need to know if I am running a business?

We need to make sure that the use is reasonable, that it does not cause a nuisance or annoyance to your neighbours, and to decide whether you need planning permission.

What is the councilís position?

We will agree to the business use if it is reasonable, providing that you show consideration to your neighbours, do not put up advertisements, and keep us informed.

What is 'reasonable' business use?

We will look at individual cases, but we will not look favourably on any use that damages our property, offends the eye, or means that people come and go at all hours.

Repairing and servicing cars is unlikely to be popular with neighbours, and so it is very unlikely that we will give permission for this.  On the other hand, providing part-time typing or cleaning services is not likely to cause offence and would therefore be permitted.

Getting permission

All requests to carry on a business from a council home must be in writing, and addressed to the Head of Housing Services, giving:

  • full details of planned business use
  • any planned changes / alterations to the property
  • any planned sheds / outbuildings
  • any advertisements or signs which you plan to fix to the property or in the garden (we will not usually agree to this)
  • any commercial vehicles which you will use
  • the hours, level of any noise and how much you think it will inconvenience neighbours

When we receive your letter, your housing officer will fully investigate.  If you have not done so, you may be required to apply for planning permission.  If you are in any doubt whether this is needed, please see Do I Need Planning Permission? or speak to a planning officer.


You should not start to run your business from your council home until you have permission in writing from the Head of Housing services, and the Head of Planning if necessary.  This will not be unreasonably withheld.

Contact details

Housing Services
South Derbyshire District Council
Civic Offices
Civic Way
DE11 0AH

Tel: Contact the relevant Housing Officer
Fax: 01283 595852 
Online: contact form

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