Engel & Völkers Licence Partner Regional Office Belgium > Blog > Installing a terrace in Belgium: the essentials

Installing a terrace in Belgium: the essentials

With the number of fine days on the increase in Belgium, a terrace is very pleasant. Before starting work, it is important to know if you need a building permit. Once this point is decided, you must next choose the right location and calculate the exact area according to your requirements.

Here are the basics you need to know before starting work.

Is a planning permit necessary?

It all depends on where you plan to install your terrace.

Garden terrace

Usually, the construction of a garden terrace is not subject to obtaining a planning permit. However, there are some basic conditions that will vary from region to region. Accurate information is available from the town planning of each municipality.

  • Brussels: It is never necessary to apply for a permit to build a garden terrace.
  • Wallonia: If the surface of the terrace is less than 15 m², a planning permit is not necessary but there must be no modification of the ground level.
  • Flanders: When the area is less than 50 m², a permit is not necessary.

However, the terrace must be within 30 metres of the house, not at the front of the house, must be at least 1 metre from the boundary line, and must not result in changes to the ground level.

The town planning by-laws may be stricter than the general provisions. It is therefore recommended that you consult your municipality and / or architect before starting work.

Roof terrace

If the terrace is to be built at an elevation, if it is suspended or placed on a flat roof, a planning permit is often necessary, especially in urban areas. A public inquiry can be imposed. To avoid any unpleasant surprises, always consult neighbours and co-owners.

Is an architect required?

For the construction of your terrace, you can consult an architect who will give you aesthetic and technical advice. However, employing this professional is not mandatory for a construction on the ground.

If the terrace is to be constructed at a height, it is essential to have the opinion of a professional as the correct strength and tension of the support must be ensured. The municipality may require this consultation before issuing a permit.

What location and orientation?

The location of the terrace depends on the configuration of the land but also on individual tastes. It is possible to position a terrace to benefit from the maximum sunshine or to provide a shaded area.

If you are planning to take advantage of the terrace for eating outdoors, it should be situated in close proximity to the house. An isolated terrace at the bottom of the garden will not be conducive to relaxation.

What area?

The size of the terrace depends mainly on the space available. For two sun loungers, a terrace of 3 x 3m is enough. To install a table and several chairs, it must be at least a few metres larger in both width and length relative to the table.

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Engel & Völkers
Licence Partner Regional Office Belgium

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