Skip to content

Phased Development and Community Infrastructure Levy (CIL)

CIL has recently been triggered on a development that could have benefited from being phased. Please consider if a development could be phased and discuss this with your planning case officer early in the planning process so that the phasing can be explicitly set out in the planning permission.  This will likely require a condition to be applied to the permission

Where a planning permission is phased, CIL is applied to each phase of the development as if it were a separate chargeable development. The benefit of this is that different parts of the development can start without CIL becoming due on other parts of the development. This has implications on:

  • development cashflow
  • build timescales
  • the ability to claim CIL relief

Phasing self-build developments

A common query is about self-build developments. For example, for a self-build development of 4 dwellings, if the permission is not phased then all 4 owners would have to take liability and claim self-build relief before any works start. This can:

  • be tricky to coordinate
  • lead to problems with someone starting work before everyone else's paperwork is in order
  • lead to surcharges being applied. 

If each plot is an individual phase, then commencement of any individual plot would only affect the CIL liability for that one plot. This means each individual plot owner could claim self-build relief. They can also start work when they want.

Phasing where only part of work is CIL liable

Developers may also want to consider phasing where there are different types of work taking place or only parts of a permission is CIL liable. For example, we recently had a scenario where permission was granted for the creation of a dwelling and a new driveway to an existing dwelling.  The plot was being sold on the open market. But the owners of the existing dwelling wanted to start work on their new driveway before the plot was sold. If they did this, it would have triggered the CIL liability on the new dwelling. They would have then had to pay the CIL even though they were selling the plot.  

The original permission could have been phased with the driveway and the new dwelling as 2 separate phases. The commencement of one would then not have affected the other. This means that the existing owners could have started the driveway:

  • without triggering CIL and
  • before they sold the plot.

If you want to know more about CIL and phasing please contact the Infrastructure Team. You can email them at

Need help?

Most issues can be resolved online, it's the quickest and most convenient way to get help.

Your feedback is important to us

Help us improve our service