Self-build and custom housebuilding

What is self-build and custom housebuilding?

Self-build and custom housebuilding is housing built by individuals or groups for their own use, either by building the home on their own or by working with builders. 


Self-build projects are defined as those where someone directly organises the design and construction of their own home. Community-led projects can also be defined as self-build. Self-build options include:

  • a self-build one-off home – an individual manages the design and construction process and undertakes all or part of the building work
  • a contractor built one-off home – an individual manages the design process and selects a contractor to carry out construction
  • a kit home – an individual selects a preferred kit home (and may have to arrange construction of foundations) and the kit home company erects the house
  • an independent community collaboration – individuals work as a group to acquire a site to divide into plots and organise the design and construction of their own homes
  • a supported community self-build group – a social landlord or a community self-build agency helps a group of individuals to build their homes

Custom housebuilding

Custom housebuilding is where you work with a developer as an individual or a group to help deliver your own home. The developer may help to find a plot, manage the construction and arrange the finance for your new home. The individual or group may decide to finish houses off themselves to save on money.