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Thousands of families helped to build own homes

Thousands of people and families in England will be supported onto the property ladder and given the opportunity to build their own home, with the launch of the government’s Help to Build scheme.

  • Help to Build equity loan scheme launches, with 5% deposits backed by £150 million of government funding
  • Scheme will boost self and custom build sector, supporting SME builders and creating new jobs
  • It is the latest government action to support families onto the property ladder – with over 765,000 households helped into home ownership since 2010

Thousands of people in England will be supported onto the property ladder and given the opportunity to build their own home, with the launch of the government’s Help to Build scheme, the Department for Levelling Up, Housing and Communities announced on 24 June 2022.

Backed by £150 million of government funding, Help to Build will enable people to overcome prohibitive mortgage costs to build a home that is tailored to their needs and in a community of their choice, with just a 5% deposit towards land and building costs.

Help to Build will open for applications on Monday, making self and custom-designed homes an option for those who don’t have Grand Designs size budgets. Most people are currently priced out of this option because it can require huge sums up front – the average for a self and custom build deposit is around 25% of land and building costs.

Help to Build will help level up communities by supporting young people and families into homeownership in places where they want to live. It builds on the success of other government schemes, including Help to Buy and Right to Buy, which have helped more than 765,000 people buy their own homes and will contribute to the one million homes being built by the end of this parliament.

The scheme can help people with specific living requirements, creating homes that are tailored to their needs, including those with disabilities or those who live with large families or elderly relatives.

Help to Build is also part of the government’s plan to boost the UK’s underdeveloped self and custom build sector, which will create jobs, increase the number of new homes and help grow the economy. The government has today published its response to Richard Bacon MP’s independent review of scaling up self and custom housebuilding, commissioned by the Prime Minister. It sets out how the sector could deliver 30,000-40,000 new homes a year.

Help to Build will help families bridge the gap between their deposit and the cost of building material and land, allowing applicants to borrow between 5% and 20% of their costs across England – and up to 40% in London. Total build costs cannot be over £600,000, or £400,000 if the land is already owned, and applicants must live in the property as a primary home.

The government has also set out the measures that it will take forward from the Bacon Review to boost the sector. These include:

  • A specialist unit within Homes England to bring forward more self and custom build plots on regeneration projects across the country.
  • Bringing forward legislation through the Levelling Up and Regeneration Bill to promote self and custom building, including the review of the National Planning Policy Framework (NPPF).
  • The Modern Methods of Construction Task Force (MMC) will promote the use of modular factory-built to boost custom homebuilding.

Further information

The National Custom and Self Build Association (NaCSBA) ‘Right to Build Task Force’ was established to help local authorities, community groups and other organisations help deliver self and custom build housing projects across the UK. Initially funded by the Nationwide Foundation, since 2020 it has been funded by government to provide expertise and support to local authorities on the implementation of the Right to Build and how to secure self and custom build delivery. Today we have confirmed a further £600,000 of funding for the Task Force to enable it to continue the work supporting local authorities delivering self and custom build until 2024/25.

In developing the scheme with Homes England we have used the model proposed by the National Custom and Self Build Association (NaCSBA) as a starting point We consulted with NaCSBA and engaged with lenders, brokers and insurers in the development of the scheme. Further details of the scheme have been published today.

If you would like to find out more about the scheme and how to apply, please visit the OwnYourHome website

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