Proposals to resuscitate the self-build housing sector have been welcomed by the government.
Conservative MP Richard Bacon has published an independent report suggesting the self-build sector could deliver 30,000 to 40,000 more homes every year; it recommends a major scaling up of self-built homes to boost the overall housing supply.
This will - in theory - see homes that can be built in weeks that are better designed, built to the highest environmental standards and with cheaper household bills.
The Bacon Review puts forward six recommendations:
- A greater role for Homes England, with the creation of a new Custom and Self Build Housing Delivery Unit supporting the creation of serviced plots on small and large sites and delivery at scale;
- Raise awareness and show by ‘doing’, including with a custom and self build ‘Show Park’ and a more robust approach to legislation;
- Support community, diversity and levelling up - and crucially by reigniting the Community Housing Fund and creating more opportunities for communities to build;
- Promote greener homes and increased use of Modern Methods of Manufacturing (MMC) - custom and self build is a leading innovator in these areas, and could be used to signpost the future for government’s MMC and Net Zero Housing ambitions;
- Align custom and self build changes with planning reforms - in particular through maximising opportunities for permissioned land for custom and self build, across all tenures;
- Iron out tax issues to create a level playing field between this type of homes and speculatively built homes.
Housing Secretary Robert Jenrick MP says: “We want to help more people build their own home, making it an option for thousands who’ve not considered it or ruled it out before.
“This will help get more people on to the housing ladder, ensure homes suit people’s needs whilst providing an important boost to small builders and businesses too.
“I warmly welcome Richard Bacon’s report which matches our ambitions for the custom and self-build sector. We will consider it fully and respond to the recommendations in due course.”
Richard Bacon MP himself says: “We need to build more and better new homes. Custom and self-build can help achieve this, by putting customers and their choices back at the heart of the process.
“When customers come first, we will see more homes built – that are better designed, better built, greener and which cost less to run – and which are warmly welcomed by their communities. This review sets out a route map for how we can achieve this much needed change.”