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Self build register

The Self Build and Custom Housebuilding Act 2015 requires the Council to keep a register of eligible individuals and groups who wish to self build. The provisions in the Act have recently been reinforced by the Housing and Planning Act 2016, with local planning authorities obliged to grant sufficient ‘development permissions’ to meet the demand for self-build and custom housebuilding in their area.

Cheshire West and Chester launched it’s register to assess demand for self and custom building in January 2016 asking potential self-builders to complete a questionnaire on the type of project they are interested in. This demand will then be reflected in the Strategic Housing Delivery Plan and used as evidence to inform Local Plan (part two) policies. A review of the interest after six months has been completed and can be viewed below:

Whilst there are many variations on self build, essentially there are three main options in Cheshire West and Chester:

  • community self-build schemes to provide low cost market or affordable housing for local households, particularly in rural areas for small developments - a Community Land Trust (CLT) would purchase the land, obtain planning permission and manage the project
  • serviced plots will provide the main delivery tool to meet the Self Build and Custom House Building Act; sites will be identified according to the demand identified through the self-build register
  • self-finish affordable housing schemes or 'sweat equity schemes' where occupants are offered a discounted shared ownership or reduced rent according to the level of finishing off they undertake

If you are considering undertaking a custom build project either as an individual or as part of a group, please use the link below and complete the questionnaire to go on the Cheshire West and Chester Custom and Self Build Register.

Please note
Completing the questionnaire does not guarantee that the Council will identify a suitable site for you. At this stage the register will be used as an evidence to inform policy.

Work is now underway on Local Plan (part two) policies to ensure self-build plots are provided as part of housing developments and some Neighbourhood Plans. A rural housing delivery toolkit is also being produced to help individuals and communities develop housing that meets local needs. It is not proposed that the Council will offer sites to applicants on the register, although when land owners come forward with sites specifically for self-build, their details will be passed on to applicants on the register who are seeking that type and location of plot. There are however many sites with planning permission that can be used for custom/self-build, with some self-builders already granted planning permission on suitable plots.

The Housing Land Monitor report below details current sites with planning permission that applicants may wish to pursue, although these permissions are often applied for and implemented by the applicant and/or landowner and are therefore not available for purchase. 

For further advice on completing the questionnaire or the register please contact the affordable housing team.

For further advice on the Housing Land Monitor and Local Plan (part two)  please contact the planning team.

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