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Custom and Self Build

What is Self and Custom House Building?

Self-build developments are those where individuals or groups of individuals organise the design and construction of their house themselves. This can take place on small individual developments, or serviced plots can be made available on larger developments. It covers a range of different projects, from a DIY self build home where you complete the majority of the building work from the ground up, and sometimes bring in specialists to complete jobs such as electrical or plastering work, to employing someone to build the majority of your home for you, or community-led projects.

Custom house building is where the individual or groups of individuals commission their home from a developer, whilst being in control of making key design and layout decisions. The home is constructed by the developer. The developer may help to find a plot, manage the construction and arrange the finance for your new home. Design guides can be agreed by the developer through the planning application process, setting the parameters for the different styles and sizes of houses which you can choose from.

Self and Custom House Building Register

The Government is committed to increasing the number of self and custom build houses and to establish it as a mainstream option for people to choose to get on the housing ladder or when moving home.

The Council is required to keep a register of people looking for land in our area on which to build their own homes. The Register will provide an indication of the demand for self and custom house building in the area and will allow the Council to prepare housing and planning policies which support the development of self and custom housing in the most suitable locations. The register is not a public document, but headline data will be made available.

At the 30th October 2022 (end of the monitoring year), there were a total of 124 entries onto the register (120 individuals and 4 groups). Within the monitoring year 2021/22, 14 new entries had been added to the register. The majority of people on the register do not have a preference for a specific location within North East Derbyshire. Those who have specified locations would prefer a self-build house within the north of the District, in particular at Dronfield, Unstone Parish and Ridgeway/Marsh Lane. There is also interest in Wingerworth, Barlow/Holmesfield and Ashover.

Register your Interest

The Council is seeking enthusiastic individuals, families and groups who want to build their own homes. We have a wealth of information available for you to help you make an informed decision to see if this is right for you.

You can register your interest with us online.

By applying for a place on the Register you are agreeing that we can use the data you provide to understand demand for self and custom house building. We will not pass identifiable data from the Register onto anyone outside the Council without the written consent of the person who registered their details.

Once we have received your completed form we will determine your application within 28 days of receiving it.

By registering you are not making any commitment to self or custom build. The Council also cannot guarantee that suitable serviced plots are made available.

If you wish to be removed from the Register at any point, please contact us, using the contact details below. Furthermore, we may occasionally contact you to check whether you still wish to remain on the register.

Suitable Development Permissions

The Self-build and Custom Housebuilding Act 2015 (as amended by the Housing and Planning Act 2016) places a Duty upon the Local Planning Authority to give suitable development permission to enough suitable serviced plots of land to meet the demand for self-build and custom housebuilding in their area. The level of demand is established by reference to the number of entries added to the Register during a base period (starting from 31 October each year), supported as necessary by additional data from secondary sources. At the end of each base period, a Council has 3 years in which to grant permission for an equivalent number of plots of land, which are suitable for self-build and custom housebuilding, as there are entries for that base period.

Monitoring of planning applications has found that 15 permissions have been granted for self or custom build housing between 31st October 2021 and 30th October 2022. The graph below provides an overview of the demand and supply situation since 2016. It shows that there is a slight shortfall of self and custom build permissions to meet the demand on the register at 30th October 2022, which may increase in subsequent years without the supply of further self and custom build permissions.

Date range for base periodTotal No. RegistrationsPermissions grantedDemand*Supply
1 April 2016 - 30 Oct. 2016 1 0 0 0
31 Oct. 2016 - 30 Oct. 2017 6 0 0 0
31 Oct. 2017 - 30 Oct. 2018 12 0 0 0
31 Oct. 2018 - 30 Oct. 2019 32 0 1 -1
31 Oct. 2019 - 30 Oct. 2020 26 2 7 -5
31 Oct. 2020 - 30 Oct. 2021 33 26 19 9
31 Oct. 2021 - 30 Oct. 2022  14  15 51 -8
31 Oct. 2022 - 30 Oct. 2023     77 -34
31 Oct. 2023 - 30 Oct. 2024     110 -67
31 Oct. 2024 - 30 Oct. 2025     124 -81

*Deadline for meeting demand (Cumulative totals 3 years following each base period)

Available Land

We have a List of sites (.pdf | 198kb) which may be suitable for self and custom build housing. If you are looking for land to build your own home in the area, you can review the list of sites and make contact with the land owners to check availability and further details.

If you are a landowner and wish your site to be offered to the people on the Self and Custom House Building Register free of charge, please contact us, using the contact details below.

All negotiations and sales processes should take place between land owners and buyers. We recommend that anyone who is seeking to sell or buy land obtains independent professional valuations and legal advice (from a solicitor or estate agent).

Although the sites on the list are considered to be suitable for housing, you will still need to apply for planning permission for your specific proposals.

Further Information

There are a lot of things to think about when building your own home! The options may be intimidating at first glance, but it is actually fairly straightforward when you take all the planning and design factors into consideration.

You may want to specialise in an eco-friendly property, look at “container” housing or consider a timber house kit. We are also encouraging projects of several properties being constructed together by local community groups.

Non-traditional house building can be cheaper than traditional construction. Have a look at what best suits your pocket and your aspirations.

Most of the common issues experienced by people building their own home can be avoided by working with an experienced architectural designer and qualified construction contractor. Whatever skills you have and whichever route you follow, building your own home can be an amazing experience.

We are able to help and offer advice. Please contact us on:

Email: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Phone: 01246 231111