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Self and Custom Build Study

Housebuilding has been the subject of much debate regarding alternative design and delivery models aimed at achieving better quality homes in greater numbers than the current systems provide.

The regeneration of Whitehill & Bordon provides a framework for the delivery of different housing models, with a remit to adopt innovative solutions, one of which is self and custom build. The innovation does not have to simply be limited to custom and self-build homes as there are financial, engagement, sales and construction processes which could adopt new strategies for the delivery of the homes.

The idea behind the project is to provide a test bed for a series of preferred custom and self-build options, to gain knowledge and experience of different models with the aim of adopting these on further sites throughout Whitehill & Bordon as well as other developments.

Collaborating with industry leaders in the self and custom build field, Urban Place Lab were appointed with self-build consultancy Ecomotive, to investigate existing precedents, market demand, financial model, planning options and delivery mechanisms for self and custom build housing and apply this to the parcel as a demonstrator site, aimed at showcasing the delivery of a successful custom and self-build site and establishing Bordon as a hub of housing innovation.

Drawing upon the combined expertise and resources the team was able to utilize detailed information from nationally available and in-house data bases to understand the amount and nature of the local demand for self and custom build homes.  A further key requirement for the future project is to establish a financial return and ‘value’ to the landowner. The site offers the potential for a different financial models, with plot sales to custom and self-builders combined with longer term lease arrangements which generate income over a longer period. There is also a great potential for added value in terms of community, innovation, business and sustainability.

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