So you’ve got everything ready for your home clear-out or refurbishment, but have you considered that you might need a skip hire permit (also referred to as a skip hire licence)?
If you’re planning on hiring a skip to be kept outside your property on the public road, you’re probably going to need to fill out some paperwork and wait for your permit to be approved before your container can be delivered.
However, there are easier ways of satisfying the local authorities and keeping your bulk waste disposal above board…
Here’s everything you need to know about skip hire permits in the UK, as well as a hassle-free solution that beats sorting it all out yourself.
Anybody who wants to hire a skip in the UK must comply with section 139 of the Highways Act 1980, which requires all containers kept on public roads to have a skip hire permit.
The reason for this is to make sure the skip isn’t posing a danger to other road users or restricting access to emergency vehicles.
On top of the permit, your skip may also be required to display reflective markings, traffic cones, safety lights and contact details for the skip hire company (SunSkips takes care of all that as standard).
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Failure to follow local authority restrictions for skip hire could land you with a fine of up to £1,000 and your skip may be removed without notice.
If you have a driveway or land on your property to keep the container on without blocking access, a skip hire permit isn’t necessary.
Also, if your property is on an unadopted road that does not have to be maintained by the highway authority, then you may also be exempt from obtaining a permit.
It’s best to check with your local authority or skip hire company before you decide whether or not you need a permit so you don’t run the risk of a fine down the road.
You can either apply for your skip hire licence directly with your local authority, or ask your skip hire company to take care of it for you.
Anita from the SunSkips commercial sales team is responsible for obtaining skip hire permits for clients and admits it can be hard going at times.
She said, “It really depends which local authority you have to deal with. Some have their processes in place and it’s fairly smooth, whereas others often don’t even answer the phone.
“It’s stressful, but I’d rather handle it myself than have customers struggling with it because so many things can go wrong if you’re not used to it.”
A typical skip hire permit is valid for between one week and one month, so depending on your local authority, it’s important to time your application so it covers your entire skip hire period (although you can usually extend your permit if you need to).
The fee for your skip hire permit depends on which local authority you need to apply to.
SunSkips charges a flat rate of £100 (VAT included), which is mostly made up of the council fee, plus an administrative fee for taking care of it all.
You can add on your skip hire permit when you book, either online or over the phone.
A skip hire permit application usually takes five days to be approved, but can sometimes take longer, especially if it’s your first time applying for one and you’re not sure what you’re doing.
If you don’t submit your application in good time, you may find yourself without the right paperwork by the time your skip is due to be delivered (SunSkips can’t deliver your skip until your permit has been approved).
Applying well in advance is wise in the unlikely event that your local authority deems it necessary to decline your application for a skip hire permit.
This would usually be due to concerns over restricted access for traffic or pedestrians, which may be the case for containers larger than eight yards (the biggest skip local authorities typically allow on a public road).
You may also find that you’ve applied at a time when there are several other skips on the road and it’s simply a case of there being too many containers out at once. This is more likely to occur in the spring/summer season or during a popular local event where traffic control is important.
If you’d rather focus on your clear-out or refurbishment and leave the skip hire permit to us, give us a call on 01449 360 036 or 01223 976 496 – or book your skip online today (there’s an option to let us know whether or not you need a skip hire permit).