The date of 31 October 2019 was a significant one for prospective self-builders. Why? Because from this date, every local authority in England should be making available potential development plots to self builders who have applied on a Right to Build register.

The Self Build Register - what is it and how does it work?

What is the self-build register?

Since April 2016, Local authorities across England have been keeping a register of people and groups interested in building their own homes. Joining the register makes your contact details readily available to local councils in areas where you want to build your own home.


How does it work?

Local authorities have an obligation to keep a register of any individual or local community groups wanting to obtain land to build their own homes and must take into account the self build demand when preparing local plans.

In other words, a local authority must make sufficient serviced plots available for self builders on the register to apply, within three years of the application. This isn’t the same as offering a plot for sale to people on the list – it’s not a guarantee that you will be offered a plot. But the aim of the legislation is to create more opportunities for self build and custom build in your area.

As a self or custom builder you can register your interest in as many local authority areas as you like.


Who can register?

  • Anyone over the age of 18 who is either a British Citizen or national of another EEA state or of Switzerland
  • An individual, a couple or an association (i.e. a group of people wanting to build homes together)
  • A self or custom builder who plans to build a home that they will live in as their primary residence – excludes those wanting to build a holiday home

How to register?

Some local authorities have set up their own registers whilst some are using the Local Self Builder Register to help them gather the information they need. You can find out which local authorities are using their own systems or the Local Self Build Register service by filling in your details here. If you find that your local authority is using their own register, check out their website or simply give them a call.


Next steps…

Now you have made the first step to building your own home, you might be overwhelmed with what to do next. Don’t worry, we have got it covered . Check out our 6 steps to building your dream home.

You may also want to consider the type of land before you. Check out our top tips to consider when buying land for your home.

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Please Note: Every care was taken to ensure the information in this article was correct at the time of publication. Any written guidance provided does not replace the reader’s professional judgement and any construction project should comply with the relevant Building Regulations or applicable technical standards. However, for the most up to date LABC Warranty technical guidance please refer to your Risk Management Surveyor and the latest version of the LABC Warranty Technical Manual.

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