The term Self Build doesn’t always mean literally rolling up your own sleeves and getting your hands dirty amongst bricks and mortar, but more often to determine the agreement of ‘commissioning’ a bespoke home.

It is estimated that there are between 10,000 and 20,000 self builds in the UK every year. Surprisingly with the UK having one of the smaller percentages of self-build homes compared Austria, 80% of all homes are self-built. In Germany, France and Italy, the figure is 60%. In the US and Australia, it is over 40%. A stark contrast to the UK’s mere 10%.

Boosted by the glittering TV shows like Grand Designs and George Clarkes’ Old House’ ‘New Home’ and after three unsuccessful years of searching for your forever home, you may decide to count yourselves into the UK’s 10% of Self Build Home Owners.

The dream of a Self-build home, in theory, is incredible. A made-to-order pad that meets the individual needs of all of those who live in it including the dog. The choice and power to choose whatever you like, wherever you want… budget permitting of course.

There is enormous potential for many more people to take up the opportunity to build their own home, and it can be a much cheaper way to provide a home for you and your family.

While building your own home can be a very stressful, time consuming and detailed procedure, if calculated correctly and with no significant problems, it can save you a lot of money, to gain a lot of house.

Historical UK Government figures show that the average new-build costs £189,940 compared to a self-build cost of £84,000 if you do the work yourself, or £146,000 if you employ tradespeople to do it for you.

So, once you have decided what area you want to live in, the big search starts to find the perfect piece of land.

Use a property portal like that has been designed just for development type land or property. You can search for potential self-build home plots across the UK, in all shapes, sizes and at varying prices.

With a little thought, you can turn a run-down derelict home, an empty piece of land or a small house with significant development opportunities into the home of your dreams.

You’ll need to choose a great architect to get you through the planning process and even manage the build for you and of course you will need the ideal builder to construct it. Recommendations and viewings of past projects are strongly advised.

With such a variety of choice of internal and external features also comes a broad range of costs which can make it harder to know if a self-build can fit your budget, but the primary motivation should be getting value for money. Your mortgage may be £150,000, but you must aim for the finished value at least 30%-40% higher.

It is imperative to remind yourself that there will also be an emotional pay out along the way, both good and bad. Be under no illusions, it is a stressful task building a new home and things rarely go entirely to plan. Still, the upside of designing and creating an asset that will stand in your community for hopefully hundreds of years is a very real and proud moment.

When you’re relaxing in your beautiful new home, will you look back and think, yes, it took a lot longer than expected and cost a little more than you had budgeted. Yes, you probably cried when many things didn’t go to plan. Yes, you sure did overrun on time. Yes, there were many times when you wished you had never entered into the crazy world of self-build,…but like most things that are hard work and take blood, sweat and tears, in the end, it really will be worth it, both financially and emotionally.


More blog posts by Jessica Parkes