Self Build Homes

Self build homes are a speciality of Plande;

We have worked on a substantial number of homes since our inception in 2007 across a wide range of local planning authorities in the North and South, including (but not limited to) Great Manchester Councils (Manchester, Trafford, Cheshire East, Chester & Cheshire West) etc

Self Build Homes are a specialist form of housing. While they fall under the general C3 use class, generally self build houses are more bespoke than speculative housing. Here we refer to self build homes as homes created specifically for the occupiers rather than necessarily physically constructing the houses themselves (although several of our clients have done just that).

Architecturally, self build homes are varied and if designed correctly sit better in the context in their surroundings. Often more contemporary in nature than speculative housing, such homes provide high-quality additions to an area.


Self Build Homes Planning Permisison

It can be challenging to obtain planning permission for self build homes for several reasons. The context of the houses – whether in Green Belt, conservation areas, backland sites, tandem plots or garden land provide unique opportunities and potential limitations that need to be fully understood. Particularly in London Architects create unique homes on tight urban sites which otherwise wouldn’t normally expect such developments.

The designs of self build homes are generally different from their immediate surroundings and convincing neighbours, planners and Committee Members that they are acceptable is a vital part of the planning process.

Self Build Homes


Different Types of Self Build Homes

Replacement dwellings or the conversion of existing buildings into self build homes are a core element of these housing types. We have a wide range of experience in all different forms of self build homes – please see some interesting examples below and contact us to discuss your specific project.

Since 2015 the Government have required local planning authorities to plan for custom and self build homes which have provided additional opportunities to create such properties and can potentially help to leverage planning permission where policies or initial investigations suggest such homes would be unacceptable.

A further category of self build homes we have significant experience in is Paragraph 79 (previously para 55) Homes – please see our dedicated case studies page for more information.

The following case studies provide a small sample of the different types of self build homes we have been involved with.

Backland Tandem Garden Land Self Build Homes

Self build house on backland site, South Manchester

Planning permission had been sought on the backland site on three separate occasions, with two earlier planning appeals rejected. The proposals sought to develop a single new build dwelling on garden land to the rear of numerous dwellings in a suburban setting. The refused planning application was subject to strong neighbour objections and was unanimously refused by the planning committee on several grounds including the living conditions of the neighbouring properties, especially in relation to the increased vehicular and pedestrian activity. A further planning refusal reason was that emergency vehicles would be hindered in case of a fire at the property.

The subsequent grounds of appeal document methodically resolved each item of concern, specifically including third party additional material to support the issues and robustly justifying the proposals in planning policy and supplementary guidance terms.

The Local Planning Authority had also proposed, that should the appeal be allowed that several conditions be added, including the removal of permitted development rights. Our arguments, supported by the Planning Inspector concluded that these would not be “necessary or reasonable”.

The Planning Inspector concluded that the proposals would not be contrary to planning policy, would have no harm on neighbouring properties (amenity, noise and disturbance), and following us obtaining approval from the local fire department, that there was no issue in relation to emergency vehicles. As such the appeal was allowed, overturning the original refused planning permission.

Local Planning Authority: Trafford Council

see also: Backland & Tandem Plots; planning appeals; garden land; 

Paragraph 79 Paragraph 55 Self Build Homes

Planning Approval for NPFF Paragraph 55 Dwelling House in open countryside

Our client appointed us with respect to a carbon-neutral family self build home on a site located in open countryside, and as such was unacceptable in local planning policy terms. Previous applications, by another company, had been unsuccessful.

The National Planning Policy Framework (NPPF), however, makes an exception in special circumstances where designs are “truly outstanding or innovative”.

A redesign of the original house design was proposed to ensure that the application had the best chance of arguing that the house was of exceptional quality. A robust and detailed planning statement was included within the planning application, incorporating the design and access statement to justify the scheme and design.

Although the Planning Department recommended refusal, the Planning Committee granted approval, commenting the house achieved a “… high standard of sustainable construction and innovative design”.

Local Planning Authority: Breckland Council

see also: Paragaph 79 Homes; Self Build Homes; Infill plot; garden land; TPO’s

Green Belt Replacement Self Build Homes

Green Belt Replacement Dwelling in Macclesfield, Cheshire East

The detached dormer bungalow had previously been extended past the LPA’s suggested 30% local planning policy, however, our clients wanted a substantial green belt replacement dwelling although the LPA initially suggested allowing only an additional 10 – 15 sq m. The site was quite complex with an irregular shape and substantial level changes which limited the options. The site was fairly exposed with fantastic panoramic views across Cheshire which impacted on how the proposed green belt replacement dwelling was viewed in the context of the openness of the green belt.

Ultimately we achieved planning permission for a green belt replacement house over 250% larger than the “existing” dwelling, with further extensions creating over 300% larger. In total the scheme allowed for over 400% larger than the “original” dwelling.

Local Planning Authority: Cheshire East Council

see also: Green Belt; Area of Special County Value

Brownfield Developments Self Build Homes

Riverside Self Build Home on a contaminated flood risk site


Local Planning Authority: Denbighshire County Council

constraints: Flood Zone; SSSI; SAC; World Heritage Site; 

Infill Self Build Homes

Infill Self Build Home on narrow plot in Manchester


Local Planning Authority: Manchester Council

see also:

Redevelopment Replacement Self Build Homes

Replacement self build home in open countryside


Local Planning Authority: Flintshire Council

see also: Open Countryside; house extensions; rural developments

Paragraph 79 Paragraph 55 Self Build Homes

Paragraph 55 Self Build Home Planning Permission in Suffolk


Local Planning Authority: Mid Suffolk District Council

see also: Paragraph 79 Homes; Self Build Homes; rural development, Listed Building

Barn Conversion Self Build Homes

Barn Conversion and Class Q PDR Self Build Homes


Local Planning Authority: Warrington Borough Council

see also: Barn Conversions; Rural Development; Change of use to dwellinghouse

Garden Land Self Build Homes

10,000 sq ft contemporary self build home on garden land, Preston


Local Planning Authority: Fylde Borough Council

see also: Garden Land Development; infill plots; backland/ tandem developments

Rural Self Build Homes

Rural self build homes in open countryside


Local Planning Authority: Malvern Hills District Council

see also: Paragaph 79 Homes; Self Build Homes; rural development

Change of Use to Self Build Homes

Change of use to dwelling house in open countryside


see also: Barn Conversions; Self Build Homes; Infill plot; rural developments

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This page provides an introduction only and is not a definitive statement of the law and should therefore not be relied upon.
The information above relates to England only. Policies across the rest of the UK may differ.
Contact your Local Planning Authority for advice and confirmation before any works are carried out.