Thinking of self-building? You need to consider these points first!

We all have our dream home, whether it’s a sleek and ultra modern smart home in a new and professional neighbourhood, a Georgian-inspired townhouse in the inner suburbs or a romantic and whimsical cottage in the heart of a picturesque village. In order to build your dream home, you first need to find the right plot of land on which to build. It can seem like a daunting prospect, but by keeping a few things in mind, you’ll know exactly what to look for.

How big a plot do you need?

You’ll probably find it very difficult to build a substantial family home in a small or narrow plot, and plots of land found in cities and towns tend to be smaller, so you need to either find a plot that’s big enough for your plans or change your plans to fit in the plot.

If the plot you bought has detailed planning permission, everything will already be planned out, but if not you will need to take the measurements of the house you’d like to build to an architect. Not only will you find out if your measurements fit well into the plot, they can help you to design a property that would make the most of the plot.

Is the plot suitable for your plans?

Looking at things such as the plot being on a slope is essential to your plans for self-building. Slopes and other factors, such as soil type, will have an influence on what your architect can design and what your builders can construct. Even if your plot looks flat, it may need to be leveled out before you can build on it.

Do you want to live in the area?

Whilst you may have fallen in love with the plot itself, you need to consider if you genuinely love the surrounding area too. Do you need to be close to shops, schools or transport links? Take a walk in the surrounding neighbourhood to see how you feel about the families and houses in the area and to see if you’d want them as your neighbours.

You’ll also need to ensure that the plot of land can be connected to electricity and gas mains, a telephone line, plumbing and pipes and existing roads. You should check out with the Local Authority about flood levels and similar considerations.


Depending on the plot of land’s location, you may have other considerations to take into account when designing your home. For example, if you’re building in a pre-existing residential area, are your windows going to overlook into someone else’s home and will they be able to see into yours? Even if you’re building in a rural location, you need a design and plot that will give you a good level of privacy.

At Brightman Clarke Architects, we work with a number of private individuals who have bought plots of land and are looking to build their dream home. For more information about how we can help you achieve your perfect home, give us a call today on 0114 321 1869 or get in touch with us online.