Self-Build and Custom Housebuilding
... are defined in the Housing and Planning Act as:
“...the building or completion by— (a) individuals, b) associations of individuals, or (c) persons working with or for individuals or associations of individuals of houses to be occupied as homes by those individuals.
It does not include the building of a house on a plot acquired from a person who builds the house wholly or mainly to plans or specifications decided or offered by that person.”
This definition underlines the importance of the role that the future occupier takes.
Local Planning Authorities (LPA’s) and other stakeholders recognise various models of self-build and custom housebuilding including: individual and group delivery mechanisms to acquire land, secure planning permission, fund the costs and procure the dwellings.
However, where a developer delivers speculative units (notwithstanding a purchaser could make various choices during the construction phase (e.g. kitchen and bathrooms)) for profit, this is outside the definition.
If the future occupier is involved in the full planning process it is recognisable as within the definition of self or custom build. However, because developers funding the enabling works (including the planning permission) to bring forward land for sale to self-builders is likely to be an important mechanism in allowing demand for self-build sites to be met, there remains some grey area in the definition at least until such time as the reserved matters or details for approval application is submitted and the future occupier can be identified.
THIS IS A VERY IMPORTANT DISTINCTION
If you can evidence that you are a true ‘Custom Self-Builder’ designing and constructing a house as your main residence and which you will live in for at least 3 years, then you could claim exemption from CIL – the Community Infrastructure Levy. Although varying from one local authority to another, this could amount to tens of thousands of pounds.
House-Builder Developers have to pay this on anything they build for sale, BUT – if the arrangements for the planning and sale of the land to you are handled correctly – you won’t have to.
This is a major incentive and benefit to you, putting thousands of pounds in your pocket as a CUSTOM Self-Builder – if you know how (see Reduced Land Cost section)
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