Self Build Homes

Planning your own Grand Design? Make sure your self build project runs as smoothly as possible with our expert guides and advice, plus take inspiration from our self build homes case studies. From choosing a plot to funding and finding the right architect, you can ensure your own self build is a success.

Extensions

by Hannah Fenton

October 20, 2017

On-screen inspired London terrace basement extension

Film executive Niels Swinkels and his wife Erica took inspiration from on-screen interiors to turn their London terrace into a bright, open home. When film…
brick-built-zero-carbon-new-build-in-blackheath-london
Self Build Homes

Brick-built, zero-carbon new-build in Blackheath, London

Caroline and Philip Cooper’s dream of building a sustainable property became a reality when they realised that their ideal plot was on their doorstep in...
toronto-townhouse-with-three-dormers
Self Build Homes

Toronto townhouse with three dormers

When Craig and Carol Damp Lowery took on their Edwardian-era semi in Toronto, Canada, their vision for its future was for space and light, achieved...
mondrian-inspired-new-build-in-somerset
Self Build Homes

Mondrian-inspired new build in Somerset

Mondrian-inspired design meets open-plan living in this well-considered new-build.
5-eco-friendly-home-building-ideas-from-experts
Self Build Homes

5 eco friendly home building ideas

Are you looking to build a house that is also environment friendly? Check out Grand Designs Magazine's editor's eco-friendly house build ideas.
new-build-by-the-sea-in-donegal-ireland
Self Build Homes

New build by the sea in Donegal, Ireland

In an inspirational coastal setting, this contemporary take on a traditional Irish home was designed to embrace its surroundings and be a sociable space for...

Kevin McCloud on how our homes give us the chance to reflect and have new experiences

Our editor-at-large ponders how our homes can give us a chance to reflect and have new experiences.
how-our-homes-give-us-the-chance-to-reflect-and-have-new-experiences
contemporary-eco-new-build-home-in-denmark
Self Build Homes

Contemporary eco new build home in Denmark

The design of Rasmus and Lene’s Danish home connects with its woodland setting, making it a natural winner.
george-clarke-on-why-britain-should-be-a-nation-of-self-builders
Self Build Homes

George Clarke on why Britain should be a nation of self-builders

The architect and presenter of Channel 4’s Amazing Spaces and The Restoration Man shares his latest tips and ideas.
case-study-hi-tech-contemporary-kitchen
Self Build Homes

Case study: Hi-tech contemporary kitchen

Hi-tech appliances combine with contemporary style in this new-build family home in West London.
case-study-en-suite-bathroom-design-for-life
Self Build Homes

Case study: En suite bathroom design for life

Gavin and Sally Cooke planned ahead when they built their new en suite to suit their visiting parents’ needs.
stunning-demolition-new-build-in-north-london-by-facit-homes
Self Build Homes

Stunning demolition/new build in North London by Facit Homes

With Anya, Robin and their 4 boys fast outgrowing their house in North London, in order to stay in the area that was ideal for...
a-self-build-woodland-retreat-in-hampshire
Self Build Homes

A self-build woodland retreat in Hampshire

An existing building and glorious woodland location inspired architect Tristan Wigfall to create a modern yet sympathetic country home in Hampshire

Research has shown that approximately one million people in the United Kingdom are taking part in their own building projects, be that self build homes, extensions, garden rooms, conversions or property renovation.

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Normally a building project is undertaken to increase living space for family or entertaining requirements or to increase the value of a property. Sometimes, it’s because of the builder’s desire to create an outstanding piece of architecture that is appealing and different, whether it’s constructed on an empty plot of land, or to extend an existing property.

The key to a successful self build is finding the right plot. Once a plot of land has been found, before starting a project, planning permission is required for building. While starting a self build project might sound an interesting challenge, be aware of the financial implications. Establishing a budget, and staying on budget can be a huge challenge in itself, and so it is important to get these in place from the beginning.

Finding the right architect for your self build will mean that you are able to create a brief to design the perfect family home, the spacious kitchen or the exciting tree house that you’ve always wanted.

The average self build can take up to a year just at the pre-planning stage, and then another year to complete on site, or sometimes more. It’s important to not rush the pre-planning process, as rushing at the early stage of any building project could cause architectural or other problems in the future. Prioritise external areas of the building to be completed first; interior installations, improvements and decorative touches can be pushed back to after the build completion.