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How Putting Customers in Charge Can Change Everything!

  • Angelo Baccarella
    3 minute read...

Government Review of Custom Self-build Housing

“The way in which our housebuilding market operates constrains the supply of new homes because there is not enough competition and innovation. Unlike housing markets elsewhere in the world, there is a lack of consumer choice and diversity of supply.

“Self-build and custom housebuilding can play a crucial role in increasing choice for consumers and ensuring people can live in the homes that they want, and that are designed to meet their needs. We know that self and custom builders deliver high quality, well-designed homes that are energy efficient, accessible, affordable, and welcomed by their communities.”

“The central problem is that most customers have almost no clout when it comes to buying a home. Instead of customers being able to choose for themselves what they actually want, which of course will vary hugely, most customers have very little say for the very item on which customers spend the largest proportion of their incomes – their homes.”

To facilitate the scaling up of the sector, the report commissioned by the government puts forward six recommendations:

  1. A stronger role for Homes England – including a new Custom and Self-Build Housing Delivery Unit within Homes England to help create plots on small and large sites and to support scaling up. Several levers will be needed to support this, including investment into custom & self-build enablers and developers, the launch of the Help to Build Equity Loan scheme, funding for councils to release plots, and work with the proposed ‘Centre of Excellence’ for Modern Methods of Constructions to promote effective custom build housing delivery.
  2. A campaign to raise awareness and understanding of the Right to Build legislation – people in England can express their interest to create a home with their local authority of choice. The review recommends that Government should promote and strengthen the legislation and self-build Registers and create a custom and self-build housing Destination Show Park and Hub with Show Homes.
  3. To do more to support community-led housing through targeted funding for Community-led Housing Hubs, specialist housing associations and introducing a Self-Help Housing Programme and a Plot to Rent Scheme.
  4. For Government to promote, recognise and support the sector through its work to promote the take up of Modern Methods of Construction and Net Zero Housing ambitions.
  5. To maximise access to permissioned land for self-commissioned homes through the Government’s proposed planning reform and change Right to Build legislation so that it better achieves its objectives. This includes more robust action where local authorities fail to meet statutory duties and special planning policies which allow unplanned sites to come forward in areas of high demand for plots.
  6. To investigate the perceived disadvantages in the tax system between the custom and self-build delivery model and other forms of housing.

Change is clearly needed and to make that change we must ensure that sufficient land comes forward on which people can choose the home they want to live in. We must also open the eyes of the public to the possibilities that are out there. Both these aspects are areas in which Stellco Homes is actively working to provide the solutions in our local areas and help people ‘live in the homes that they want, and that are designed to meet their needs.’

It involves creating the conditions in which customers are treated as if they matter the most, rather than – for the most part and are given those choices. Our Custom Build programme delivers both the customer choice and by working together with landowners, the sites and plots for people to choose and commission their own home that reflects the lifestyle they choose to lead.