Council ‘Committed’ to Self-Build Housing Despite No Register Six Months After the Law Required
Tuesday 27th September 2016 @ 17:18 by Tom Greggan
News

Tameside Council has been criticised for failing to set-up a ‘Right to Build’ housing register, something that has been required by law by April, with one expert saying they are ‘failing to meet their legal duty’.

However, they say the register will be available in the coming weeks and that the Council is committed to Self-Build housing.

According to an Ipsos Mori survey commissioned by the National Custom and Self Build Association, over one million people in the UK plan to take action to build their own homes over the next 12 months.

Despite this demand, 21 local planning authorities, including Tameside, have so far failed to put in place a register to assess demand for custom and self-build homes in their area, complying with the Self-build and Custom Housebuilding Act which came into force in England on 1 April 2016.

Each of these councils will ultimately have to ensure the delivery of sufficient serviced building plots to meet local demand when a new legal duty within the Housing and Planning Act 2016, dubbed ‘The Right to Build’, commences on 31 October 2016.

Michael Holmes, chair of NaCSBA and property expert for The Homebuilding & Renovating Shows, said: “Those local authorities in England that do not have a register are not only failing to meet their legal duty under the Self Build and Custom Housebuilding Act, but are letting down their local community, as there are hundreds of thousands of people who would like to build their own home yet cannot find a plot.

“Without a register in place, they will not have an indication of local demand and how many individual building plots they need to permission. As a consequence, they may face appeals against refusals of planning permission for custom and self-build homes as well as the risk potential legal challenges, so it’s imperative for them to start implementing without delay to meet the end of October deadline.”

Tameside Council say their Right to Build register will be up and running before that October deadline.  A spokesperson said: “The Self Build register will be launched in the next few weeks.

“Tameside Council is committed to Self-Build and we have an agreement with infrastructure and property maximisation company Capita who can help to finance lending.

“Type3 Architects, who worked on the Self Build vanguard pilots, are part of the arrangement with Capita and able to promote sites and work with developers.”

The NaCSBA survey also revelaed that 77 per cent of Brits were unaware of their local council’s duty to keep a register of people looking to buy land in the local area to build their own home. To help those in a similar situation, NaCSBA has developed a new website, righttobuildportal.org, where people can easily find the details of each local authority’s Right to Build register. It also allows those in areas where an official register has yet to be introduced to sign up. NaCSBA will collate the names and ensure the relevant authority is informed.

Michael Holmes added: ““Apart from the attraction of having an individually designed home, there are several financial and tax incentives to having a custom or self-build home. Depending on the level of involvement from the homeowner, it is possible to save 20-30 per cent by self-building compared to buying a similar property.”