- Project plans
- Project activities
- Legislation and standards
- Industry context
- Specialist wikis
Last edited 11 Oct 2020
Types of dwelling in approved document m
The building regulations set out legal requirements for specific aspects of building design and construction. A series of approved documents provide general guidance about how different aspects of building design and construction can comply with the building regulations.
Approved document M provides guidance for satisfying Part M of the building regulations: Access to and use of buildings, which requires the inclusive provision of ease of access to, and circulation within, buildings, together with requirements for facilities for people with disabilities.
- Category 1 – Visitable dwellings.
- Category 2 – Accessible and adaptable dwellings.
- Category 3 – Wheelchair user dwellings.
The requirements set out in M4(2) Accessible and adaptable dwellings and M4(3) Wheelchair user dwellings, are optional requirements that only apply if imposed on new development as part of the process of granting planning permission. Otherwise, only the requirements of M4(1) Visitable dwellings apply.
Very broadly, the different levels of requirement are:
- M4(1): Category 1 – Visitable dwellings. Compliance with this requirement is achieved when a new dwelling makes reasonable provision for most people, which includes wheelchair users to access and enter the dwelling, and access habitable rooms and sanitary facilities on the entrance level.
- M4(2): Category 2 – Accessible and adaptable dwellings. This requirement is met when a new dwelling provides reasonable provision for most people to access the dwelling and includes features that make it suitable for a range of potential occupants, including older people, individuals with reduced mobility and some wheelchair users.
- M4(3): Category 3 – Wheelchair user dwellings. This requirement is achieved when a new dwelling provides reasonable provisions for a wheelchair user to live in the dwelling and have the ability to use any outdoor space, parking and communal facilities.
See also: Dwelling.
 Related articles on Designing Buildings Wiki
- Access and inclusion in the built environment: policy and guidance.
- Access consultant.
- Accessibility in the built environment.
- Accessible London.
- Approved document M.
- Changing lifestyles.
- Dwelling type.
- Equality Act.
- Inclusive design.
- Lifetime Homes Design Guide (EP 100).
- Lifetime homes.
- Lifetime neighbourhoods.
- People with disabilities.
Featured articles and news
Creating comfortable climates despite extreme temperatures.
Study examines how adjustable arrangements can succeed.
Government announces plans to improve accessibility.
Resource addresses pandemic-related NEC4 contract issues.
Incorporating EDI into the provision of fair access.
Government announces global innovation strategy.
An architectural biography. Book review.
The house where the future king of France lived.
The teacher, architectural technologist and mum offers her insights.
Careful planning needed as supply chain issues continue.
The sensitive conversion of a neglected Cornwall structure.
Plan stresses local involvement in city, town and village development.