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Last edited 24 Jan 2019
See also: Types of dwelling
 Approved document B definition
A unit of residential accommodation occupied (whether or not as a sole or main residence):
- By a single person or by people living together as a family.
- By not more than six residents living together as a single household, including a household where care is provided for residents.
 Approved document L1A definition
‘...a self-contained unit designed to accommodate a single household.‘
 Approved document M2 definition
'...a house or a flat. However, new blocks of flats built as student accommodation are to be treated as though they are hotel/motel accommodation in respect of space requirements and internal facilities.'
The 2001 Census definition of a dwelling is:
'a self-contained unit of accommodation. Self-containment is where all the rooms (including kitchen, bathroom and toilet) in a household’s accommodation are behind a single door which only that household can use. Non-self contained household spaces at the same address should be counted together as a single dwelling. Therefore a dwelling can consist of one self-contained household space or two or more non-self-contained household spaces at the same address.
'Ancillary dwellings (eg former ‘granny annexes’) are included provided they are self-contained, pay separate council tax from the main residence, do not share access with the main residence (eg a shared hallway) and there are no conditional restrictions on occupancy.'
For more information see: Gov.uk, Definitions of general housing terms.
The English Housing Survey Housing Stock Report, 2014-15, prepared by the Department of Communities and Local Government, defines a dwelling as:
- The household spaces it contains are ‘part of a converted or shared house’, or
- Not all of the rooms (including kitchen, bathroom and toilet, if any) are behind a door that only that household can use, and
- There is at least one other such household space at the same address with which it can be combined to form the shared dwelling.
A new-build home is a new standalone structure or a part of one (such as an apartment) that will come into use for the first time after it is completed. Ref Home Quality Mark One, Technical Manual SD239, England, Scotland & Wales, published by BRE in 2018.
 Related articles on Designing Buildings Wiki
- Approved documents.
- Definition of institution.
- Domestic building.
- Flat definition.
- Housing stock / building stock.
- Original dwellinghouse.
- Residential definition.
- Room for residential purposes.
- Sheltered housing definition.
- Shop definition.
- Student bedsits and separate dwellings.
- Terraced house.
- Types of building.
- Types of dwelling.
- Use class.
- Use of railway carriages as holiday homes and permanent housing.
- Workplace definition.
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