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self-build

Minister of Housing Visits Graven Hill

Graven Hill is the UK’s most exciting custom build community, designed for those who want a home that is extraordinary. Self-build becomes possible through Graven Hill, who focus on the bespoke and the unique, creating communities that are suited to the needs of the individual, their lifestyle and their taste.

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Custom Build in Chapelton

A new way to purchase a new home, which gives purchasers very real choices, is now available in Chapelton, Aberdeenshire. Purchasers are able to buy a plot, make a large number of choices about living spaces, room layouts, and the fitting and finishing and then leave the building work up

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New Self-Build Project With A Home Lift

When David and Carol Simpson decided to move back to Devon to reconnect with their roots, little did they realise they would need to embark on their second self-build project in 20 years. The Simpsons were not new to self-building – they completed their last project in Marlow – a

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Latest Issue

BDC 319 : Aug 2024

self-build

Minister of Housing Visits Graven Hill

Graven Hill is the UK’s most exciting custom build community, designed for those who want a home that is extraordinary. Self-build becomes possible through Graven Hill, who focus on the bespoke and the unique, creating communities that are suited to the needs of the individual, their lifestyle and their taste. The minister of housing, Kit Malthouse MP, paid Graven Hill at visit on the 18th of September to get a first hand look at how the largest self-build community in the country is progressing. “It has been marvellous to be here and wonderful to see the energy at Graven Hill. This is an infectious, ambitious project providing the housing needed for growth and success of the town.” “We are extremely proud of this development; we’re creating a place to live, delivering the homes that people need and helping them to see their grand designs become a reality,” commented Cllr Barry Wood from Cherwell District Council, which hosted the visit, showcasing the exciting and innovative Garden Town project. Standing proudly as pioneers of self and custom build, Graven Hill enable individuals to design inspiring homes on pre-prepared plots that offer the chance for the house of dreams to be created across a range of budgets. Each house can be as imaginative as the buyer chooses and fit their requirements perfectly. Up to 1,900 unique homes will be build over a ten year period, surrounded by open, green spaces inclusive of woodland, allotments and a network of footpaths and cycleways. Alongside planning consent for the new builds, a new primary school will be created, a new pre-school nursery and a new community centre. The Garden Town project will also feature cafes, shops and a local pub. “The development could revolutionize the future of home building,” concluded Managing Director of the Graven Hill, Karen Curtin.  

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Custom Build in Chapelton

A new way to purchase a new home, which gives purchasers very real choices, is now available in Chapelton, Aberdeenshire. Purchasers are able to buy a plot, make a large number of choices about living spaces, room layouts, and the fitting and finishing and then leave the building work up to the experts. Called custom build, this is a form of development that lies between self-build and buying a new house from a developer.  Custom build gives buyers the ability to select the house that best suits their needs and budget, and takes away issues that can arise in getting the building work done.  It is brought to Chapelton by designyourhome.com, a part of the Places for People group of companies. Kim Slowe, managing director of designyourhome.com said, “We expect custom build will revolutionise new house building in the UK.  Customers like choice and that is what we are giving them.  After a customer buys a plot in Chapelton, and has made their choices, we can build it to their specification and have it ready to move into 6 months later.” Fully serviced plots are available in Chapelton through designyourhome.com from £165,000.   NOTES Chapelton is a new settlement lying some 8 miles south of Aberdeen close to the A90.  The settlement is being built as a series of villages, each comprising houses, flats, commercial properties and leisure/open spaces.  Construction of the first of the villages (called Cairnhill) started in 2014 and so far there is a café, nursery school, beauty salon, allotments and a variety of houses and flats including retirement properties.  The construction of Chapelton will take a number of years to complete, and once done, Chapelton will include all of the ingredients that make up a town.  Ultimately it will comprise some 8,000 dwellings and be a town larger than Stonehaven.  Custom build is relatively new to the UK housing market.  At present it is more prevalent in England than Scotland due to legal obligations that exist for the Local Authority to allocate a part of any new development site to include self-build plots.  There is no equivalent legal obligation on councils in place in Scotland at present. Custom Build as offered by designyourhome.com is a simplified form of self-build.  designyourhome.com has already done much of the early planning work for the plot, agreeing what is and is not possible to build at Chapelton with the Local Authority and master planning architects.  As a result, as soon as the customer finalises choices, it is possible to clear them quickly for planning and building warrant and then to start to build.  In this way it is possible to ensure that the customer will move into their new property six months after they buy the plot and enter into a build contract with designyourhome.com. The customer is able to choose from a variety of pre-agreed layouts for each floor of their house, a number of options for extensions, and some external modifications such as additional windows.  There is wide range of choices for internal fittings and finishings from the type of doors and ironmongery, the design of skirting and coving, the layout of bathrooms and en-suites, the type of kitchen fittings and equipment and many more. designyourhome.com is being offered by ZeroC Holdings Ltd, a part of the Places for People Group of companies.  ZeroC Holdings has many years of experience as a housebuilder and is one of a limited number of builders at the Prince of Wales Poundbury development in Dorset.  ZeroC Holdings is experienced in delivering mixed use properties on design-led schemes such as at Chapelton. Benefits of the designyourhome.com custom build model arise to both the purchaser and the developer.  The customer is able to own a new home, built to their own specification and cost.  Unusually for a self-build project, the customer has certainty on cost and time.  Interest payments for the developer are reduced and this saving is shared with the purchaser. Purchasers of designyourhome.com properties at Chapelton are able to do some of the work themselves (for example carry out decoration) as long as any work done complies with the Chapelton Design Guide.  This would obviously lead to a lower build cost. designyourhome.com is selling eight plots at Chapelton for custom build.  The first two fully serviced plots, with the ground floor slab already in place, are released for sale, each at a price of £165,000.  The house options available are for either 2 or 3 bedroom properties with a garage.  A separate build contract will be entered into with designyourhome.com for any building work at the same time as buying the plot.  

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New Self-Build Project With A Home Lift

When David and Carol Simpson decided to move back to Devon to reconnect with their roots, little did they realise they would need to embark on their second self-build project in 20 years. The Simpsons were not new to self-building – they completed their last project in Marlow – a mock Tudor dwelling – more than 20 years ago and were not really looking to build from the ground up again. However, after only a few months of living in their two-bedroomed Devon bungalow, they discovered that the layout simply did not work for them and extending was not going to resolve the main issue which was the windows. They were not positioned in a way that enabled David and Carol to enjoy the fabulous panoramic views of the coast. So the couple sketched out a plan of the type of ‘future proof’ house they wanted and took it to a self-build show. There they met representatives from Hanse Haus, builders of pre-manufactured, energy efficient houses. The Simpsons were keen for a quick turnaround, so hired the German house builder to fully project manage the scheme. Their sketches were turned into architectural plans on the basis of which, planning permission was received. Work began on demolishing the bungalow and digging in of new footings for the concrete blockwork. With all the hard work that was going to be involved, both David, 69, and Carol, 67 were adamant that they didn’t want to move again. Therefore it was imperative for them to ‘future proof’ their new home, and installing a domestic lift was the perfect way achieve this. Additionally, the plan was for Carol’s elderly mother who is in her nineties, to move in once the build was complete. Adding a home lift had obvious benefits for her too. Although Carol’s mother did not use a wheelchair the Simpson’s decided on a Stiltz Duo Lift as part of their future proofing. The lift, which is a great alternative to a stairlift, travels on a unique dual rail system and worked perfectly with the couple’s original sketched ideas. Additionally, the domestic lift has an integrated drive system and simply plugs straight into the wall, using a normal 13 amp power socket so there was no need to worry about making space for a separate machine room. To compliment the streamlined and modern interior, the Simpsons installed their Stiltz Lift, which are also available in the USA – the company also recently launched a new Lifton brand – behind contemporary wooden doors in the hallway and upstairs on the landing to match the doors throughout the rest of the house. Mr Simpson said: “We decided, even before we started our initial drawings, that we wanted a home lift for two reasons. The first was to ‘future proof’ our home for when we eventually get too old to use the stairs properly and secondly for Carol’s elderly mother. “We came across Stiltz online and they provided us with a floor template so we knew exactly how much space we needed for the lift. This made it easy for us to include the lift in the sketches and plans which we handed over to Hanse Haus. “We did consider a stairlift but our stairs bend halfway up. Stairlifts also take up a lot of space in the stairwell and are a bit of an eyesore, so we are very happy with our decision. It sits behind a door in the hall and goes up to the first floor landing just perfectly.”

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