07 Jun 2023 - Self Build, Architects

What is the Right to Build scheme?

From finding a plot to hiring the right team, there is so much to consider when planning a self-build project. But if you want a custom-built home that’s completely unique to your tastes and needs, the rewards are worth it. Thankfully, initiatives such as ‘Right to Build’ act to address the issues individuals face building their own properties. 

Here, we discuss what Right to Build is, what self-builder’s rights are, and how to take advantage of the scheme to help build your dream living space.

What is the Right To Build scheme?

As part of the Self and Custom Build Housebuilding Act 2015, Right to Build is a Government initiative designed to make self-builds easier, offering more individuals (or groups) the chance to create their dream home. Right To Build legislation exists to ensure that everyone has the right to create their own perfect property, rather than solely relying on the existing housing market. This helps to create a supply of more diverse and better quality housing across the country. New legislation came about on 31st October 2016, meaning that local authorities in England are now legally obliged to maintain a list of people and groups interested in building their own homes.

What does Right to Build legislation say?

If you wish to build your own home in the UK, you can log your interest with your local planning authority via the Right To Build Register. As part of Right To Build legislation, these authorities must ensure there are sufficient self-build plots available in your area to meet demand, while proving that planning permission has been granted on Right To Build plots within three years. In 2016, new Right to Build legislation made it a legal obligation of local authorities to maintain a list of people and groups interested in building their own homes. 

How does the Right to Build act help self-builders?

Being able to design and create your own home should not be a pleasure reserved for a minority of people. But for many years, UK housing has been dominated by select house builders - resulting in a continual rise in house prices and poor-quality properties. Right to Build legislation now gives more people the opportunity to self-build a living space they love, at a price they can afford.

Picking out Right to Build plots

It’s not all ‘Grand Design’ style detached homes when it comes to self-builds and Right to Build plots - the Right to Build scheme helps local planning authorities make smarter decisions on which applications to approve, including more affordable custom-designed apartments in premium-priced areas. Purchasing a plot doesn't even mean you have to self-build - you can also commission a project. To help you maximise self-build success, we’ve broken down the self-build journey step-by-step. Alternative places to find plots include sites such as Plotfinder and Buildstore - although it’s vital to carry out thorough research before making an offer or purchasing any plot of land.

How can you register with Right to Build?

The Right to Build Register is a digital platform that can connect you to your local planning authority. Within this secure Right to Build portal, you can also connect to other people and opportunities in your area, as well as the suppliers to help make your home a reality. If you register as an individual, your local council will seek to provide you with an individual serviced plot. For those registering as a group, the council will look to provide a Right to Buildplot for the group to build several homes or flats.

At Deuren, we’re huge advocates for all things self- and custom-build. For more self-build advice and inspiration on making your home your own, explore our self-build resources.

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