For the most part, people looking to get onto the property ladder will simply buy a pre-existing house, or perhaps a brand new one on a plot of land that is being developed. But another way into home buying that many people opt to do is buy a plot of land, and build their home to their exact specification.
The benefits of this include having a personalised house, designed around what you want rather than what other people think you should have, and the flexibility to change any aspect of your home’s construction where needed.
So is buying a plot of land and building your own bespoke home the way forward? Here are the pros and cons of embarking on such an ambitious project.
Not for the feint-hearted
It is important to note that the journey into building your own home is not going to be an easy or straightforward one, as it can often be a complex process which involves a lot of red tape.
Finding the best land
The first step is to decide on where you want to build your new home. This means viewing a selection of different plots of land in order to determine the most suitable location for you.
People have all sorts of different location requirements; some prefer living in a town or city close to an assortment of local amenities, transport links and good schools for their children, whereas others may prefer to live somewhere off the beaten track in their quest to live in isolation and with the maximum amount of privacy.
Another factor to consider is land value, and the value of your new home. Buying a cheap plot of land somewhere usually means that the area isn’t very desirable, and so this could affect resale values of your new build, so it is worth taking this into consideration.
It is worth checking out the prices of existing homes for sale in the area you are considering, just to get a measure of what you may get if you ever decided to sell your home.
Complying with rules and regulations
There are many government rules and regulations that your new build needs to comply with before construction can even begin. Failure to ensure that everything is done properly could result in you facing hefty fines or legal issues, and in some extreme cases even imprisonment!
Things that you will need to consider include:
Connection and maintenance of basic services such as electricity, gas, water, sewerage, telephone lines);
Local restrictions related to watercourses, creek or dams in and around the plot of land;
Insurance issues, such as areas near rivers that are at risk of flooding;
Checking the location of land boundaries, and identifying any potential areas of dispute;
Checking if there are any covenants on the land.
Building the house
Unless you are a builder and you have a team of people to help you build your home, you will have to enlist the services of a local construction firm to build your home for you. They will discuss your requirements with you, get plans drawn up and you can advise of any changes that you may want to make along the way.
A conveyancing solicitor will help with the legal side of things, but you will have to be the central point of contact for all third parties and essentially manage the project yourself.
These are just rough, general guidelines to building your home, from the point of buying land for sale through to the build stage. If you’ve built your own home, you can share your experiences by posting in the comments box below!