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self-build revolution pipe dream or reality

7 January 2011

Housing Minister Grant Shapps yesterday called on the country’s aspiring self-builders to make a housebuilding revolution their New Year’s resolution.

Mr Shapps wants to break down the barriers that many aspiring self-builders come up against and is to develop an action plan to make it easier for aspiring individual or community “self-builders”.

We all know that the planning system generally is being overhauled but a new Community Right to Build will also offer communities the chance to give the green light
to new developments without the need for specific planning applications.

Could this make Mr Shapps’ dream of a self-building revolution more “chaos” than “utopia”? Not only will those wanting to do it have to overcome serious regulatory burdens, increases in costs of materials and expertise and lack of access to land and finance, but will also need to get community agreement to the proposals. At what cost?!

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