What is a Custom Build Home?

This route offers a bespoke property without some of the hurdles often associated with a self build project. James Buchanan from Oakwrights looks at how it works
by Oakwrights
23rd October 2019

In 2011 the UK government introduced the term custom build housing as part of a strategy to encourage the construction of new homes and communities that have more input and involvement from the homeowner than a typical housing development would offer.

The benefits of custom build

Custom build offers individual plots, often sold with the incoming utilities and site infrastructure in place, along with outline planning consent (which the developer usually gains themselves).

With land available and permission in place, you can choose from a range of house styles that will be tailored to your individual needs.

The parameters that the planning permission was based on do have to be upheld, but this is no different to the traditional self build route. In fact, there is some flexibility to tailor the permission to what you’re looking for. You can have more of a direct say in a custom build home design through further planning or what is known as a reserved matters planning application.

Oakwrights’ custom build developments

At Oakwrights’ custom build developments, homeowners benefit from a bespoke home while not having to go through the hurdles of plot-hunting or the planning process

The scheme is then redesigned to better meet your individual wish list. A major benefit of a custom build development is that you are able to design the exterior appearance of
your home and alter the position on your chosen site. Your nominated architectural team will then resubmit the planning for the home on your behalf and manage the process.

A custom build house

Homeowners Karen and Simon have built a custom build home on Oakwrights’ Lyonshall site, which is in Herefordshire.

They worked with our in-house architectural team to fully customise their property’s interior layout and internal fixtures and finishes. This enabled them to build a dwelling that perfectly suits their lifestyle.

The approved design on their plot provided a great layout but was a little too large for Karen and Simon’s needs. Having taken a lot away from their visits to our show home, the initial design conversations stemmed from using one of the floorplans from the Woodhouse range (which Oakwrights’ show home is based on). Seeing the space allowed them to visualise their home’s potential layout options with ease.

Oakwrights’ show home

Karen and Simon based their custom build on Oakwrights’ show home

While their plot already had full detailed planning approval for an oak frame house, we still prepared comprehensively for this planning application. The Design and Access Statement was used to demonstrate how the new proposals compared to the existing approved design. In this case it could be demonstrated that the proposed floor area and volume was being reduced, while key planning concerns such as the ridge height and materials palette remained similar.

This all assisted the planning process and helped overcome potential issues. Generally, an application for a revised design, like with custom build homes, is more straightforward than a newly proposed plot. This is because the principle of development has already been established.

This is particularly the case if the previously agreed access arrangements are being retained, which for Karen and Simon they were. This meant we could manage the application process on their behalf, taking this responsibility off them.

Oakwrights prepare detailed, robust and compelling planning application packages for people looking to custom build. This gives a project the best possible chance of approval.c

James Buchanan is a turnkey and custom build manager at Oakwrights. He helps to realise your oak frame home dream with minimum amounts of your time involved, keeping all elements of your project on track.

He works to your initial budget, avoiding unexpected costs that so often affect self build projects. For more information visit www.oakwrights.co.uk

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