It’s easy to see why self build homes appeal to so many of us. You have complete control over the construction of your home and can provide input on every element. This is why many people aspire to take on a self build project.
Before you get started on your self build home, you must first find a plot of land to build on. That can be difficult in this highly competitive market. However, you can try a few strategies for success. Such as, finding backland plots with potential or building up a connection with local agents.
In this article we will cover how to find your very own self build plot. We’ve got some tips and tricks to discuss – so keep on reading.
What Is A Self Build Plot?
The term ‘self build plot’ refers to the piece of land an individual purchases for the purpose of building their own house.
This differs from the traditional housing market, where the home buyer has little to no involvement in the building process. In contrast, a self build project offers the homeowner complete control. If you have specific and unique requirements for your dream home, a self build project is the perfect option for you.
In this case, first, you will buy a plot. Then make a rough design for your self-built house. After that, you employ engineers, architects, and construction workers to turn it into a reality. Depending on your professional and educational background, you might be able to take care of the design and engineering aspects yourself. However, you will still need a good construction company.
The Benefits Of A Self Build Home
Someone might own multiple houses. But they will only have one home. So, it is important that you are satisfied with it. And that is the greatest benefit of a self build home. You can be in total control of the process from beginning to end.
As a result, you get to build a home suited to your lifestyle, taste, and family’s needs. And needless to say, living in a house that you love has beneficial effects on your mental health.
Another advantage of self build projects is the amount of money you can potentially save. A fully finished house on the market is typically sold at a price that is 20% higher than the total cost of land and construction. If you intend to buy a newly built house from a developer, there are various risks. These can include the use of low-quality materials, or careless construction work. In contrast, most who build their own home will end up with a better property for less money than if they’d bought a completed home from a developer.
You can save money on construction materials too, as the VAT is reclaimable. This will allow you to get back as much as twenty percent of what you had spent on construction. You can reinvest the money to add some more features to your home.
Self-build houses allow you to create eco-friendly homes. You can compromise on certain features and add new ones to make your house and the surrounding plot greener. You can also design your home to be powered by solar panels or windmills.
Planning and building your own home is a marvellous experience, even if you don’t do it with your own hands. Living with your family in a home that you created will keep you emotionally connected to the property for years to come, which in turn will strengthen your family bonds.
Some Tips For Finding Your Self Build Plot
Finding the right self build plot is one of the first steps in your self build journey. This can sometimes feel like a tough task to take on. All the professional building companies are also hunting for potential plots. Plus, they have more networks and connections compared to normal individuals. So here are a few tips for getting ahead of the rest.
Use the Internet
For starters, you can check out websites like Plot Finder or Plot Browser to find plots in the UK. These websites can make your search much easier. You can also get a lot of information about potential plots from one single place.
Be Ready to Compromise
You might have a specific picture of a plot in your mind. But it may not exist in reality – or at least not exactly how you imagined it. So be flexible! Instead of clinging on to emotions, prioritise logical aspects such as the location, affordability, neighbourhood environment, etc.
Research your Area
As mentioned earlier, there is a significant difference between dreams and reality. You may discover this as soon as you start looking for land. For instance, does your chosen area fulfil all the criteria for your self build home? Make sure that you have done your research.
Learn to Identify Potential
There are various types of self-build plots. Many of them are hiding in plain sight. If the potential of a plot is too obvious, there is a chance that the big developers will reach it before you. So, look out for land whose potential is less apparent.
Take Advantage of Google Maps
To implement the strategy mentioned above, Google Maps might be the most useful tool you can use. Zoom in closely – and use Street View when you can – to find the potential backland plots in your chosen area. One of them could very well be the self-build plot you are seeking.
Planning Permission Application
The applications submitted to the planning departments for permission approval are public records. So, visit the planning departments and ask to see their Planning Register. You should be on the lookout for recent applications (without detailed plans or drawings). When you find one, contact the applicant directly. These applicants are most likely to be owners trying to sell their plots. They will be waiting for the planning approval to come through before advertising the plot for sale because this will raise the value of the plot.
Build Connections with Estate Agents
Do this by keeping regular contact with the various agents in your chosen area. Estate agents are more interested in selling houses than land, but local agents who run property auctions may have something that suits your situation. It’s worth keeping in contact with both types of agents. Regular contact will mean your name is more likely to pop up in their mind when they get a plot offer.
Let Other People Know
Whenever you meet friends, family, or close colleagues, let them know that you are looking for land. You never know who is quietly planning on selling their plot. These people might be more comfortable dealing with an acquaintance than selling via a middle man.
Use Social Media
This is one of the most effective ways to find a self-build plot these days. When you post about your search for land on social media, you are reaching out to many potential sellers at the same time. You will have plenty of chances to negotiate on price and conditions by direct messaging or exchanging telephone details.
Don’t be Desperate
Plot hunting can be pretty frustrating. But you shouldn’t let that overwhelm you. When you become desperate, you run the risk of falling for different fraudulent schemes. For example, purchasing a desirable piece of land at a reasonable cost with the promise of future planning approval. In this situation, the land is likely to never get approval, and you will end up wasting your money.
If you have no luck finding a self build plot on your own, consider hiring a professional land finder. These are usually people who have been working in the housing and building industries for a long time. As a result, they have the necessary connections and skills to find land more quickly.
Hopefully, these tips will help you get the self build home of your dreams. You will want to hire an experienced, quality construction company that is used to this kind of self build project. In that regard, Astrum Construction is your best bet.
A self build home can save you money and allow you more control. Plus, it lets you build the dream house you’ve always wanted. However, keep in mind that no self build project can be completely identical to what was originally envisioned. So be prepared to make a few compromises along the way
With over 20 years of experience in the construction industry, we know exactly how to make your dream home a reality. We can assist you with each step of the process, or just deal with the parts you are unable to carry out yourself. Our bespoke service is available in Hertfordshire and surrounding areas. Contact us today to get started on your self build home.
Are you having doubts about whether self building is the best option for you? We’ve written a blog on why you should choose self builds, and debunked 5 common myths about self building to put your mind at ease. Once you’re ready to get started, read our beginner’s guide.