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The differences between small-scale and large-scale projects

Now that you have decided to carry out renovations at home, do you know what kind of work you will be doing? Is it a small-scale or a large-scale project? This is one of the most important questions to ask yourself at the beginning, as it will determine which permits you have to apply for at the relevant townhall. To give you a hand, today we are going to explain in this article, the peculiarities and differences between a small-scale project and a large one. We hope that we can clarify any doubts you may have.


Irrespective of whether you are going to carry out reforms in Mallorca or somewhere else, the first thing we need to be clear about is whether we are undertaking a large-scale or a small-scale project. The classification of construction activities subject to the need for a permit is included in the urban planning regulations of the General Urban Planning Ordinance or in the Municipal Ordinances, but, as a rule, it is the magnitude of the reforms being undertaken that establishes the difference between large-scale and small-scale work:


  • Characteristics of large-scale construction work: All major projects which include the construction of a new storey, an expansion in surface area, volume or height, works which change the use of the building, integral refurbishments of existing buildings, i.e. those which modify the structural ensemble, those which affect the structure, such as the elimination of load-bearing walls, etc., are considered large-scale projects. All of them require the preparation and approval of a technical blueprint, which must be approved by the corresponding Official College of Architects, which stipulates the type of work to be carried out and how it will be carried out.


  • Characteristics of small-scale construction work: this type of work does not point toward an increase in the size of the building, and consists of small simple repairs, décor or a revamp, or maintenance work that does not affect or modify the interior walls or communal elements of the building, living or safety conditions, nor the structural ensemble, the overall vertical drainage systems, or the external appearance of the buildings. This category would then include painting or decorating, replacing flooring, tiling, changing bathroom fittings…


Depending on whether it is a large-scale or small-scale project, you will need to apply for different permits and licences from the corresponding council. There is a fee and a tax for both small and large-scale construction permits, which is based on a certain percentage of the Material Implementation Budget (PEM), and varies depending on the district, although it is usually between 2 and 6% of the PEM.

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