Plan­ning to build your dream home be­gins with per­fect plot

Yorkshire Post - Property - - PROPERTY - Sharon Dale

A RE­CENT Home­build­ing & Ren­o­vat­ing mag­a­zine mar­ket re­search re­port shows that the self-build mar­ket con­tin­ues to rep­re­sent 30 per cent of all new de­tached hous­ing com­ple­tions and 10 per cent of all new hous­ing in the UK.

“Most peo­ple who want to build their own home find that the hard­est part of the self-build process is find­ing a suit­able site. Care­ful re­search about the area needs to be con­ducted be­fore em­bark­ing on the search process to en­sure you find a suit­able plot,” says Ja­son Orme, spokesper­son for The Home­build­ing & Ren­o­vat­ing Show, Har­ro­gate.

He out­lines five ways to make your plot search eas­ier: Keep an open mind Be­fore you start, think care­fully about what you re­ally need and what you could do with­out. Of­ten peo­ple fail to pur­chase a plot be­cause they will not com­pro­mise. Keep­ing an open mind will en­sure you see more po­ten­tial plots, one of which may in­spire you. Know your area It is im­por­tant to iden­tify an area that is broad enough to give you a fair chance, but also small enough to be able to find your ideal plot. Re­sources like Google maps can also be used to iden­tify your own sites in these ar­eas.

Use land list­ing agen­cies Spe­cial­ist agen­cies such as www.plotfinder.net col­lect in­for­ma­tion from other es­tate agents and send lists of land out to sub­scribers, which of­fer a good range of sites in dif­fer­ent ar­eas. They are a use­ful start­ing point, and will help you iden­tify those agents who are ac­tive in sell­ing land in your tar­get ar­eas. It will also give you an idea of how much land is com­ing on to the mar­ket, and at what sort of price. Study the lo­cal plan Lo­cal plan­ning de­part­ments, in as­so­ci­a­tion with national gov­ern­ments and county coun­cils, pre­pare maps and plans of their area that iden­tify which lo­ca­tions are suit­able for new de­vel­op­ment, and the rules that will be used to gov­ern in­fill sites. This in­for­ma­tion is pub­lished in the form of the Lo­cal Plan. It is a use­ful doc­u­ment, giv­ing the back­ground to plan­ning pol­icy, and can be browsed at the re­cep­tion of the plan­ning depart­ment. Visit plan­ning de­part­ments Have you won­dered why builders seem to hear about land, and pur­chase it, be­fore it gets on the mar­ket? One rea­son is that they sub­scribe to dat­a­col­lec­tion com­pa­nies that gather in­for­ma­tion on cur­rent plan­ning ap­pli­ca­tions and send out lists of good leads. If any­one wishes to get plan­ning ap­proval to build on a piece of land, they must sub­mit an ap­pli­ca­tion, which then be­comes a mat­ter of pub­lic record. This means you can walk into a plan­ning depart­ment and ask to see the Plan­ning Reg­is­ter. All plan­ning ap­pli­ca­tions are pub­li­cised online at the lo­cal au­thor­ity’s plan­ning depart­ment web­sites as well.

You can talk to ex­perts such as Michael Holmes (editor-in-chief of Home­build­ing & Ren­o­vat­ing Mag­a­zine and pre­sen­ter of I Own Bri­tain’s Best Home), David Snell (con­sul­tant at the BBC and the Daily Tele­graph’s bricks and mor­tar ex­pert), Mark Brink­ley (author of the House Builder’s Bi­ble), Tim Pullen (eco ex­pert at Home­build­ing & Ren­o­vat­ing Mag­a­zine) and Sally Tagg (plan­ning ex­pert at Home­build­ing & Ren­o­vat­ing Mag­a­zine) at the Home­build­ing & Ren­o­vat­ing Show, which is staged this week­end at the Har­ro­gate In­ter­na­tional Cen­tre.

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