If you've got grand designs for a self-build on your existing property, take heed of this expert advice for getting the most from the process. 

footprint architects dentist house photo: alex campbell - grand designs

Image: Dentist's House, Footprint Architects. Photo: Alex Campbell 

Finding, financing and getting planning permission on a plot of land can be a long and daunting process for aspiring self-builders, but if you've got a generously-sized garden, you could have the perfect self build land to build a house on. 

Whether you're looking to house guests or a relative, rent it out, or move into it yourself, it can also be a smart financial investment. 

Harry Thorpe, of Footprint Architects, explains some of the most important factors you'll need to know before tackling a self-build in your home's garden. 

The perfect site 

"The ideal building site has frontage on an existing road, and as little as 30ft to the side of your house can provide enough land for a new property," explains Harry.  You need to question whether your new build will have a detrimental effect on your existing property’s value – aim for the overall plot to be at least 3 times the building’s footprint as a rule of thumb. 

house in a garden - edmund sumner - grand designs

Image: House in a Garden, Edmund Sumner

Existing covenants 

Check with Land Registry to find out f there are any legal restrictions that prevent your land being built on or a right of way – if there is,  they could potentially be removed with legal assistance. If you don't adhere to any existing covenants you could find yourself ordered to demolish your grand design.

Funding

If you own the land you’re planning to build on, you could get an accelerator mortgage. This mortgage will give you a percentage of the land value which could pay for a large proportion of the build costs. Find out more about self-build mortgage options

Capital Gains Tax considerations

Capital Gains Tax can be a hefty cost of up to 28% of any gains made when selling a property, but it may be possible to sidestep this: "if you move into your new build and sell your old house, or if you sell off your garden with planning permission for someone else to undertake the project – as long as the land size is under 0.6 hectares", explains Harry. 

 

Are you considering building a new home in your garden? Let us know by tweeting us @granddesigns or posting a comment on our Facebook page

 

RELATED ARTICLES

Look inside this charred timber self-build in Wiltshire

Inspiring self-build home ideas using shipping containers

More on Self Build Homes...

Kevins Column

Top self build highlights at Grand Designs Live 2019 hosted by Kevin McCloud

Find top experts, specialist exhibitors and a wealth of inspiration for your self-build or renovation project all under one roof.
visit-award-winning-grand-designs-live-hosted-by-kevin-mccloud
house-of-2030-winners
Self Build Homes

Home of 2030: winning build concepts for housing of the future revealed

A self build concept is among two winners of this government-backed competition. Take a look at these future forward building ideas.
design-a-bespoke-staircase
Self Build Homes

Meer End can design your dream bespoke staircase

Bespoke joinery and staircases can really lift a home. We look at how you can add a classic or contemporary staircase to your grand design.
help-to-build-scheme
Self Build Homes

Help to Build: Government announces new scheme for custom and self builders

With the government's announcement of a Help to Build scheme, discover the details you need to know.
south-africa-narrow-house-frankie-pappas
Self Build Homes

Inside a narrow woodland home, built without demolishing a single tree

With a brief to preserve every tree in this dense woodland site, architect Frankie Pappas created a linear, narrow home that is threaded through this...
baufritz-prefabricated-self-build-homes
Self Build Homes

Discover why a prefabricated house might be perfect for you

German-engineered prefabricated homes are a byword for quality and sustainability. Discover the secrets of the methods in making these fabulous modern houses.
jackon-insulated-concrete-formwork
Self Build Homes

Why Insulated Concrete Formwork self-builds are the low energy homes of the future

Insulated Concrete Formwork Systems have arrived in the UK – a construction method that makes new builds quick to assemble and with stunning insulation properties....