The government has unveiled a new £150m fund aimed at making it easier and more affordable for people to build their own homes.
Housing secretary Robert Jenrick announced the new ‘Help to Build’ scheme to make self and custom homebuilding a realistic option to enable people to get on the housing ladder.
The fund will provide an equity loan to those looking to take the self-build option. This will work similarly to the Help to Buy scheme.
Help to Buy involves the government providing a loan of up to 20% – or 40% in London – of the price of a new build home. When the buyer sells the home, the government can take a percentage of the profit made.
The government has said that providing the Help to Build option will free up capital for self-builders so they can build the home they want – whether it is a commissioned, made-to-order home, or a new design from scratch.
The government estimates that self and custom build could add between 30,000 and 40,000 homes a year to the country’s development numbers.
As part of the push towards this type of tenure as a genuine option for people, Mr Jenrick has appointed Richard Bacon MP to lead a review on how the country can scale up the delivery of self and custom build homes. It will report in the summer.
The scheme will also make up part of the government’s wider Plan for Jobs, with the new self-build pipeline expected to benefit mainly small building firms. SME builders account for one in 10 new homes and the scheme will help scale up the number of self and custom build homes built every year.
The ‘self and custom build action plan’ has also been published today, and sets out government measures to support the sector.
These include the next steps in the review of the Right to Build legislation, to assess whether further reforms are needed, and confirmation of further funding for the Right to Build Task Force – which will help local authorities, community groups and other organisations to deliver self and custom build housing projects across the UK.
Mr Jenrick said: “Building your own home shouldn’t be the preserve of a small number of people, but a mainstream, realistic and affordable option for people across the country. That’s why we are making it easier and more affordable – backed by over £150m new funding from the government.
“The scheme we have launched today will help the thousands of people who’d like to build their own home but who’ve not yet considered it or previously ruled it out.
“Our plans will help get more people on to the housing ladder, ensure homes suit people’s needs like home working or caring for relatives, whilst providing an important boost to small builders and businesses too.”
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