27 Nov 2017

NaCSBA’s Budget response: Right to Build offers key to quality homes, but must be promoted

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NaCSBA’s Budget response: Right to Build offers key to quality homes, but must be promoted

NaCSBA has issued a response to the Autumn Budget and its focus on housing, saying that it believes that it is only when those buying new homes are given more choice will we see a step change in building the homes people actually want to live in.

With regards to the custom and self-build sector, NaCSBA saw potential in the Budget’s active support of SME builders, and the bringing forward of more small sites and new garden towns.

While it’s an advocate of the promised central register of residential permissions, it requested that the register specifically identifies permissions for serviced building plots as part of joined-up thinking.

It stated that the Right to Build holds the key to getting more homes built, as it appeals to nearby residents, offering a unique way of capturing local support for development. This is because it offers reassurances that quality homes are being created in the right areas, to reflect people’s lives and needs.

But it also commented that the key to this engagement is through creating an awareness of the Right to Build and what it can deliver locally, which must be linked closely to the promotion of the local authority Right to Build registers.

To support this, it established the Right to Build Task Force, which works to help local authorities, community groups and other organisations across the UK deliver large, affordable custom and self-build housing projects.

Michael Holmes, Chair of NaCSBA said: “Consumer choice is at the heart of every market except for those looking to buy a new home. The custom and self-build sector offers choice, quality and value. Vitally, it enables more and better homes to be built and helps grow both demand and support for new housing.

“The custom and self-build sector is already producing a substantial number of new homes and the Right to Build in England is a key building block. However, on average, custom and self-build housing delivers 39% of new homes in developed economies, and the UK is the exception at 7% currently.

“Consequently, we encourage all those interested in custom or self-building their own home to register with the local authority in the area where they wish to have a plot made available to them. This is vital to make the legislation work for them, the people who it was designed to support.

“NaCSBA would like to see the custom and self-build option available to all those accessing the housing market. This includes those with smaller deposits and/or looking at affordable housing options. But there is more that could, and should, be done, and we will continue to work with national and local government, land and finance providers and other stakeholders to help many more people into a home that they love.”

Members of the public can visit NaCSBA’s www.righttobuildportal.org for free to find a direct link to their local authorities’ Right To Build register, where they can sign up to declare their interest in designing, commissioning or building their own home.

Editor’s comment

The work NaCSBA does supports and promotes what is still a very new building route, and we need as dynamic and diverse a housing supply market as possible. Even the Budget reflect this need to have all guns blazing, and it imperative that we, as a sector, support the Right To Build.

I would thoroughly recommend all businesses working in the sector to include the Right To Build Portal link on their websites to help publicise the registers. After all, more plots means more work, and the increased likelihood of being granted planning permission to meet demand. 

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