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College of Contract Management United Kingdom
College of Contract Management
United Kingdom

Building a House in the UK - How to Get Started

building a house in the uk

Building a House in the UK | How To Get Started


It is becoming increasingly popular building a house in the UK. This may be due to a few different things. Firstly, building a house allows you to customize it to your liking. Secondly, it is often thought to be a cheaper way of getting to your dream place. Individuals can choose the number and size of the rooms as well as the structure and the design. They can also choose all of the flooring, wall designs, windows and more. With pre-built houses, on the other hand, there are some limitations. You cannot tailor every part to your liking and you have less freedom.

In this article, we will discuss the process of building a house in the UK (there is a lot to learn!) Moreover, we will discuss the various options to the house building process, and finally, we will address the pros and cons of a self-build.


Initial Process of Building a House in the UK



Finding a Building Plot


The first step to building a house in the UK is to find the perfect plot of land. This process can be difficult as you need to find land which has the planning permission you need to build your house. Contacting the local county that you would like to live in would be one of the best ways to discover plots to buy. Additionally, you could ask the locals if they know of any plots for sale.

Budgeting Your Self-build


A budget should be set at the start of the process so that the building doesn’t get too expensive. With a budget in mind, you will find it easier to search for materials at the best price. Setting a budget also ensures that you can apply for your finance so that you do not end up with an unfinished project.


Financing Your Building Project


Before you start your building process you need to obtain funding for the project. You can find self-build mortgages which will fund the project in stages as the building is carried out. Having knowledge of finances would be very advantageous at this stage, especially if you are not hiring others to do this for you.


Options For Building 


There are a few different options when it comes to a self-build. Generally, individuals can choose to do as much or as little as they want when carrying out a house build. If the individual does not have a lot of time then they can employ others, if they would like to be the manager but employ contractors, they can do that too. Individuals can even carry out the building themselves with help from professionals or completely on their own.


Package Company

One option is getting a package company that will do as much of the process of a house build as you can afford. They will give you options for designing and building. This can take the pressure off the whole house building process and is especially useful for first-time self-builders. Further, this is also a good choice for those who do not have a lot of time to be involved in the building and designing process.


Have Your Project Managed


Another option for self-build is to pay to get the project managed. This would take most of the responsibilities off you as you would have hired a manager to direct all of the operations. This would mean that you would not have to direct contractors on site. Many people who work long hours and do not have the time to manage building a house in the UK, choose this option.


DIY The Entire Process


Those who are interested in the building process can carry out the house-build on an entirely DIY process. This means that these individuals would need some considerable building experience. Individuals would also need a great deal of time and usually start a DIY project when they have a few years to dedicate to the building.

If you are thinking about building a house in the UK on your own, you will want to gain some experience in construction first. There are many things to think about, safety and quality control being some of the most important. Also, there are so many different elements that go into building a house which would usually be undertaken by a variety of different professionals. For example, building a house involves plumbers, structural engineers, roofers, plasterers, painters and more.




Courses for Building a House in the UK


There are a variety of courses that you can take which can help you with the self-build process.


Project Management 


If you want to have the role of managing the house building project, this would be a great course to gain some experience and gather the skills you need to start the housing project. This is an online course which is offered on weekends and evenings. This means that you do not have to dedicate hours that you don’t have alongside other work.




Designing a house requires knowledge of structures. You could choose to hire an architect to help you design your house. This would ensure that you are working with a professional with years of experience. However, if you wanted to be involved in this area too, you could take the College of Contract Management Structural Engineering course. The college also offers a Cost Engineering course. This course would be highly useful for budgeting the project.


Site Supervisory / Management 


Building a house in the UK will usually involve hiring a supervisor or manager of the building site to ensure that everything runs smoothly. However, you can become trained in this area for those who would want to be a part of this stage.

The College offers the CIOB Level 3 Diploma in Site Supervisory and the Level 4 Diploma in Site Management. These courses will teach you the essential skills to supervise health and safety, working with people, organising and controlling the operations and more.


Labouring Courses 


For getting involved in the physical labour of the self-building process, there are many labouring courses you can find. You can learn about bricklaying, plastering, laying foundations, fitting windows and more.




Pros of Building Your Own House


There are several benefits to building your own house in the UK.


  • It Is Often Cheaper

The cost of building a house in the UK is much more affordable than buying a pre-built home. For example, if you were looking to build a 4 bedroom home this would be much cheaper than buying the same house pre-built. This is due to developers making a profit. Houses go through inflation which means that your house will often go for more money than you bought it for, years earlier.

Furthermore, if you plan to build the house yourself or parts of it, you will be saving on contractor costs. However, budgeting is very important in a self-build to ensure that the end project comes out cheaper than it would on a pre-built house. In addition, buying a plot of land in an affordable area will be part of the struggle to ensure that costs are minimised.


  • You Get Flexibility and Freedom

In addition, a self-build will allow you to choose every element of your ideal house. You can choose everything from the structure to the flooring, to the windows. With a pre-built house, there is likely to be parts of the house you want changing, which may be too disruptive for a renovation to fix.


  • You Can Make Profit

One great thing about building your own home is that you can often get a great profit from it. They will usually sell for a lot more than it cost to build.




Cons of Building Your Own House


Here are some reasons that many people choose not to build a house.


  • It Is Very Time-consuming 

Building a house in the UK will be a much longer process than buying a house. If you need somewhere to live fast, this is not a good option. Also, there can be delays in the construction process which may put stress on living arrangements. Those who are planning to build a house need the support of a backup house to live for the entire duration.


  • It Can Be Hard to Find Planning Permission

One of the things that can put people off building their own house is the difficulty in getting planning permission. You may not be able to build particular parts to your house that you want because of things such as obstructing light to neighbours.


  • Plots Can Be Expensive in Certain Areas

Furthermore, it is sometimes problematic to find plots. In wealthy areas, they could be more than you are willing to pay. Moreover, they can be hard to find, especially in the perfect spot for you.


  • Mortgages for Self-builds Are Given to You in Stages

Unlike a mortgage for buying a pre-built property, you get payments in stages to build a house. This can cause delays and may be an issue if this is your only source of funding.



Final Thoughts 


Building a house in the UK has its pros and cons. Ultimately, it depends on the individual’s circumstances as to if it is worth the time or additional stresses. We hope this article has helped you to decide whether you should carry out a self-build and the processes that are involved. Moreover, we have a large range of construction courses which can assist you in building your house.