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Wales launches pioneering DIY homebuilding scheme

Words: Roger Milne
Brick laying / Shutterstock_462881611

A pioneering scheme to assist people in building their own home – helping to increase the supply of housing and boosting the Welsh construction industry in the process – was launched this week by ministers.

Self-Build Wales, which is financed to the tune of £40 million by the Welsh Government and managed by the Development Bank of Wales, will provide people with ‘oven-ready’ plots and a loan that covers 75 per cent of the cost of a building plot and 100 per cent of the cost of building a home.

To help self-builders meet everyday living costs, there are no repayments until the new home is completed.

The scheme, believed to be the first of its kind in the world, should remove the barriers and uncertainty around self-builds and custom-builds – such as finding a plot, planning and finance – so enabling more homes to be built.

Hannah Blythyn, deputy minister for housing, said: “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.”

Through the recycling of lending, the initiative is projected to provide £210 million of financial support through its lifetime.

Under the scheme, local authorities and housing associations will make plots available with planning and site requirements as complete as possible. They can also set priorities for applicants.

The scheme’s website allows applicants to find plots with planning permission in place.

Image credit | Shutterstock