New scheme to help people in Wales build their own home
A new £210m scheme to assist people build their own home, helping to increase the supply of housing while also boosting the Welsh construction industry is being launched today.
Self Build Wales, which is financed by the Welsh Government and managed by the Development Bank of Wales, provides people with ‘oven ready’ plots and a loan that covers 75% of the cost of a building plot and 100% of the cost to build a home. To help self-builders meet everyday living costs, there are no repayments until the new home is completed.
The scheme also provides new opportunities for Welsh SME builders to build quality homes.
It offers a route into home ownership for people who want to stay in their local area but haven’t previously been able to afford to buy there.
It also provides older and disabled people the opportunity to build custom adaptive housing that meets their needs, in the communities where they want to live.
The scheme aims to remove the barriers and uncertainty around self-builds and custom-builds – such as finding a plot, planning and finance - enabling more homes to be built and enabling Welsh builders to focus on building quality homes.
Figures suggest an average self-build house in the UK costs only 70-75% of its final value because no developer profits are involved. This puts that benefit into the pocket of the homeowner.
At around 10% of new homes, the UK has a much lower rate of self-building than other countries around the world.
Launching the new scheme, Deputy Minister for Housing, Hannah Blythyn said:
“We want to unlock the potential to build houses in Wales.
“While we are investing significantly in building new social and affordable homes, we also want to help far more people who want to build their own homes – doing so should not be the preserve of the most privileged households.
“We know finding the land, navigating planning consents and being able to afford to self-build while covering the cost of living can be real barriers. Self-Build Wales removes these barriers, and makes it far easier for people to build their own home. It will also be a significant boost to building firms across Wales.
“As we work to increase the amount of housing available, this scheme will help people who wouldn’t normally think of self-build to consider it seriously.”
Cenydd Rowlands, Property Director at the Development Bank of Wales said:
“We are excited to be working with the Welsh Government to deliver this innovative scheme which will have real impact for households as well as for wider communities.
“The Development Bank of Wales has been working with the property sector in Wales since 2012, and we have experienced first-hand the skill and passion that exists in the sector.
“Bringing planning, design, construction and funding together will open the doors to self and custom build for people who would not otherwise have considered it as a realistic option.”
Andrew Baddeley-Chappell, CEO of the National Custom and Self-Build Association said:
“Self-building enables the delivery of more and better homes that more people aspire to live in and that communities are happier to see built. Homes that are more beautiful, more in keeping with their surroundings and more sustainable than the mainstream market delivers. Homes that can combine high technology with the work of local artisans.
“We welcome this package of measures and the positive changes that they will deliver in Wales.”
Ifan Glyn, Wales Director for the Federation of Master Builders said:
“Small building firms from across Wales will be delighted with the launch of the Self-Build Wales scheme. It has been a challenging time for small house builders over recent years with our members citing the drying up of financing streams and challenges in navigating the planning system as their main barriers to growth.
“We are delighted the Welsh Government have listened to our members’ concerns and have worked with us to develop a scheme that eliminates these barriers from the equation. The hard work starts now, but with continued collaboration, I am confident the Self-Build Wales scheme will provide our members with a major opportunity to build new homes within their own communities.”
More information can be found on the Self-Build Wales website here: https://selfbuild.wales/
Notes to editors
How Self-Build Wales works:
- The Development Bank of Wales will provide loans on pre-agreed plots;
- The loans will be repayment free until the new home is mortgaged allowing people to build their new home and cover existing living costs;
- Successful applicants can choose an approved builder or if they can evidence their ability they can do the work themselves;
- Local authorities and housing associations will make plots available with planning and site requirements as complete as possible;
- The local authority and housing association can set priorities for applicants. This could be to provide adapted homes, homes for local people or to attract professionals such as GPs to the community.
- Every plot will have a ‘Plot Passport’ including the cost of the plot, approved designs, an estimated build cost, the priorities and options for personalising the home;
- Approved applicants can reserve a plot by providing a 25% deposit on the plot cost. The Welsh Government through the Development Bank of Wales will provide the rest of the funding and repayments can be deferred for up to two years or when the home is finished.
£210m is the projected investment over the term of the scheme as the initial £40m Welsh Government investment will be recycled.