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Self-Build Project Set to Begin at Elmwood in Newcastle

Work is about to start on the self-build plots at Elmwood Park Green in Newcastle upon Tyne. Developer Charles Church North East sold thirty-nine plots in the scheme to buyers who intend to build their own home.

Last year planning minister Nick Boles appeared on Grand Designs Live to talk about the Government’s Right to Build scheme. Mr Boles said he regarded self-build as a cost-effective way for aspiring homeowners to create the house of their dreams. A fund worth £150 million has been collected to help ignite a wave of self-build activity across the UK.

The self builds in Elmwood Park Green will appeal to younger people priced out of the market, people wanting to expand into a family-suitable dwelling, and couples wishing to construct their dream homes.

The project is the result of an initiative by Newcastle City Council, which responded to last year’s challenge for councils all over the country to source land for self-build purposes. Elmwood Park Green is three miles northwest of the city centre, and the new development is rapidly becoming one of the most desirable residential locations in the area.

The self-build plots, which are located on the rural edge of the Great Park development, come in five different sizes to accommodate varying budgets (Prices run between £155,000 and £170,000 per property.) All essential work to make them habitable has been carried out: road access, utilities, and water drainage.

Buyers have the freedom to build homes up to three storeys high. Innovation and individuality are supported, even encouraged, while remaining within the required parameters of high quality design and compliance with the visual amenity of the area.

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Once completed, Elmwood Park Green will contain 2,500 properties that fulfil a range of housing needs, from affordable living to larger family homes. There will also be a business park and facilities for shopping, leisure, health, and community activities. Half of the site, which encompasses 1,200 acres, is being specially landscaped to create an idyllic setting.

The National Custom and Self-Build Association believe that people are drawn to self-build because they like the idea of individual house design. A bigger living room, more bedrooms, or extra insulation can be incorporated into the plans.

Self-builders can also typically save 20 percent by building the house themselves, which is equal to the profit a traditional builder would earn.

In 2014 there were only 10,000 self-build properties completed compared to 17,000 in 2006. Experts attributed the drop to the economic climate.

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