A commonly asked question in garden building construction is, can I have a garden office with a toilet? Generally this is possible, but there are numerous considerations, including power, water, ventilation and planning permission. Read on as we explore step by step how to go about including a toilet in your garden office plans.
Every bathroom needs light, and light of course needs power. To run power into your garden office, you’ll need an armoured cable connected directly from the main fuse box in the house into the garden building. This will usually be buried in a trench and then hooked up through a consumer unit in the garden room.
All electrical work will need to be done in line with Part P electrical safety requirements, with a Certificate of Work needed to sign off the work.
You can read more about connecting power to a garden office in our detailed guide.
A garden office with a toilet will need a mains water supply. This means you’ll need a plumber to connect you up. A trench will be required and pipework laid, which will need to be a minimum distance from services such as gas, electricity and cable television.
If it is not possible to connect up via the mains, then you could consider a septic tank, although this can be quite an expensive option. You could also consider a soakaway, providing you don’t have clay soil. But you’ll need a permit to discharge effluent waste, otherwise you’ll have to install a drainage field. A macerator is another option, but access to a soil pipe will be needed to take the waste from the toilet into the main sewer. Where that’s not possible, a macerator pump station will be required.
If this all sounds too complicated, then you may wish to consider a chemical toilet for your garden office, or a compost system, which absorbs the waste and filters it out so it can be used as a fertiliser.
For hot water, you’ll need a hot water tank or a water heater.
Our guide to connecting water to your garden room provides more detail.
Any bathroom will need ventilation, especially if you are installing a shower or a bath so that you can double up your garden office as a place for guests to stay out of working hours.
Windows will help, but to prevent mould, mildew and condensation, you’ll need an extractor fan and window vents.
Permitted Development rules make it possible for garden rooms to be built without planning permission, providing they follow various guidelines. Since 2016, outbuildings only fall under Permitted Development rules if their purpose is incidental to a house. This means that self-contained usage, i.e. using your garden office as a guest room, is not allowed without the appropriate consent.
Therefore, if you are planning on using your garden room as overnight accommodation as well as a garden office, then you will definitely need planning permission, because the installation will need to follow Building Regulations.
At Surrey Hills Garden Buildings, we have earned a reputation as a trusted supplier of all types of garden buildings, including garden offices, summerhouses, gyms, studios and leisure rooms.
Why not visit one of our dedicated show sites? Our friendly team is ready to provide you with expert advice on garden office design to incorporate everything you’d like to have to hand in your outdoor workspace, including a toilet.
You are also welcome to get in touch to discuss your garden outbuilding needs. We look forward to speaking to you.