MyPlot brings together key services for novice Self Builders


New tech platform MyPlot has launched in the Self Build market, aiming to make the process of building as simple as possible by bringing together a range of services to assist novice builders on a single platform.

While self-build is on the ‘bucket list’ for many, it has yet to become a mainstream housing solution in the UK. For some would-be self builders, the process can appear complex especially for those with a full-time job and family obligations, or without any construction know-how.

While finding a plot remains a significant barrier for some, for others navigating the complex planning system, sourcing trusted contractors or securing finance for the project can be key challenges. For those without a property background these obstacles can feel insurmountable, and many will return to the established homes market, which leaves their self-build ambitions unfulfilled.

Navigating the process

To help remedy this, MyPlot has been created to assist aspirational self-builders with the process. Users can find their ideal plot, and source contractors from the directory on the platform to interview and appoint the entire team to take their home from concept to reality.

From planning consultants, architects, building contractors and mortgage advisors, the experts listed, are all experienced in delivering self-build projects, and are carefully selected by MyPlot to give novice self-builders the confidence in their choices.

The company aims to grow the number of self-build homes in the UK from under 10% of new housing in the UK, which currently creates around 12,000 homes per year. In contrast, The Self Build Housing Market Report Analysis 2016-2020 revealed self-build rates in Austria, Belgium, Italy and Sweden are as high as 70 per cent.

NaCSBA research indicates that in the first seven months of the Right-to-Build registers opening, 18,000 people had signed up, jumping to 40,000 by December 2018, so demand is definitely there.

MyPlot Director, Paul Smith, said: “In Europe, it’s much more straightforward to source a plot of land, and the planning system is less onerous – there’s also more support for those embarking on the process.

“With MyPlot, we’ve looked at the issues and offered a solution, filling the gaps and removing the complexity by providing a directory of self-build experts on a single platform.

“The government has been very supportive of self-build, particularly in recent years, introducing policies to oil the wheels and make it more attractive financially, but it’s often the practical considerations that put people off, such as financing the project and living arrangements during the build.

“What’s more, the assumption that self-build is something only wealthy people do has to be challenged – we hope that MyPlot helps to encourage people to at least be open to the idea, rather than dismiss it out-of-hand.”


Credit: Flo Pappert on Unsplash


NaCSBA Member Message

Unique Para 79 opportunity is Yorkshire’s most expensive Self Build plot

eagle hall wood cgi

Anyone with deep pockets in Yorkshire should check out the exceptionally rare opportunity to buy this unusual rural Self Build plot, with planning permission provided under Paragraph 79 (previously Paragraph 55) of the National Planning Policy Framework (NPPF) for a 456.15 sqm home. You can buy the whole site, or just the plot, and the price is a snip at £1,100,000 for the 22.74 Ha combined site!

The plot is set in its own private woodland estate setting, Eagle Hall Woods, in Pateley Bridge, Harrogate, planning permission was achieved with support from Rural Solutions planning consultancy. . The site is an unusual Victorian-designed pleasure ground filled with rare and mature tree specimens together with lakes, ponds and ornate cascades, providing a striking backdrop for the potential home.

Planning was granted by Harrogate Borough Council on 8 July 2016 for the erection of a single dwelling, together with associated access, and additional works, including an on-site sewage processing facility for the property, subject to a Section 106 Agreement.
The 22.74 Ha estate is for sale as a single item or available in two lots, with the second lot providing nearly 2 hectares of meadow and pasture land.

Paragraph 79 of the NPPF allows for a new, isolated home in the countryside – on the proviso that the new home is architecturally “interesting”. Known as Paragraph 55 in the previous version of the NPPF, Para 79 offers an exemption to the exclusion of building in the Green Belt, but the permissions are notoriously difficult to obtain. What’s more, the very nature of the homes needing to be exceptional or innovative normally means that they are, by default, expensive homes in the very finest tradition of Grand Designs.

The NPPF defines exceptional quality:

– is truly outstanding or innovative, reflecting the highest standards in architecture, and would help to raise standards of design more generally in rural areas; and – would significantly enhance its immediate setting, and be sensitive to the defining characteristics of the local area.

Exception design

The planning permission allows for the creation of a truly unique home with innovative design and significant architectural merit. In conjunction with the seller, Sadler Brown Architecture designed a contemporary design for a five-bedroom home with accommodation over two floors. Spacious balconies make the most of the new small lake, a planning condition, and the design features local stone and a green roof paired zinc cladding.

With planning permission granted in 2016, the councils has received a letter of confirmation in April 2019 confirming some material operation has begun and that condition has been complied with, securing the permission.

Eagle Hall Woods is being marketed by Savills, York, and is for sale freehold, subject to a sporting licence with potential to exercise a break clause.
Tenure and Lotting:
Lot 1 – approximately 36.8 acres – £1,000,000.
Lot 2 – Approximately 19.4 acres – £100,000.

Check out the full details on council planning portal reference number 15/03345/FUL

Find out more about Eagle Hall Wood.

Images: Savills; Sadler Brown Architects

Eden District Council’s Build your Home, Build your Community event, Penrith

Eden District Council, in partnership with Andy Lloyd of the National Community Land Trust Network, is running a free self-build, custom-build and community-led housing event in Penrith on 4 July. With exhibitors and presentations, the event is ideal for any prospective custom, self and community builders wanting to get help or advice, find like-minded people or take the next step on their ambition to create their own home.

Kicking off at 6pm at the Rheged Centre, there’s an hour allocated for networking and talking to exhibitors, with presentations starting at 7pm.

TV presenter and architectural technician Charlie Luxton will be sharing his enthusiastic personal experiences of self building, before a range of presentations that will help you discover more about building as part of a community, planning, finance and more.

Exhibitors and advice*:
• Andy Lloyd, National Community Land Trust Network Technical Advisor
ACT Cumbria and Lancaster Community-led Housing Hub
Atkinson Building Contractors
2030 Architects
JIW Properties
LoCal Homes
Penrith Building Society
• Thomas Armstrong – kit systems
Unity Trust Bank
Hyde Harrington
Manning Elliott
Green Footsteps
• Ecological Building Systems
• Eden District Council – Officers from Planning, Building Control and Community-led Housing

And presentations from:
• Charlie Luxton, architectural designer, writer and TV presenter
• ACT Cumbria and Lancaster Community-led Housing Hub
• Patterdale Community Land Trust / Eden Housing Association partnership
Lancaster Forgebank Co-housing
• Ecomotive, a social enterprise supporting group projects with an emphasis on sustainability and affordability
• Rod Hughes from 2030 Architects
• Rob Jerams from LoCaL Homes, a not-for-profit advanced housing manufacturer, offering high performance, low carbon housing solutions
• Bruce Armstrong-Payne, local self-builder and Planning Consultant
• Michelle Stevens from Penrith Building Society.

*Subject to change

While the event is free, places are limited so registration is a must.

Andy Lloyd is a community housing adviser to the National Community Land Trust Network. He provides technical support to communities and local authorities in the Penrith area, helping to deliver community owned affordable housing projects, such as:
• Lyvennet Community Trust in Crosby Ravensworth
• Keswick Community Housing Trust
• Lune Valley Community Land Trust in Halton, Lancashire

Community-led housing includes self-build, co-housing, co-operative housing, self-help housing and community land trusts (CLTs). This housing enables communities to become active players in their own sustainable development.

Sign up to Eden District Council’s Self and Custom Build Register.


EXHIBIT: If your company provides goods and services which may be of interest to self-builders and would like to exhibit at the event please email:

Find out more about Build your Home, Build your Community event here.

NE Derbyshire and Bolsover District Councils host Custom and Self Build event 12 June

Self Build House

North East Derbyshire District Council and Bolsover District Council, both NaCSBA members, are hosting a FREE Custom and Self Build event to promote the sector and share learnings with members of the public. The councils are encouraging anyone wishing to Self Build or Custom Build to register for the event and come along to this free informative event.

The councils are organising the event to publicise the route, and also their activities locally to make Custom and Self Build a choice for more people, supporting people as they go through the joys and pitfalls of building your own home.

At the event will be presentations about planning, design from Lomas and Mitchell Architects, low energy housing, finance by BuildStore, land and legal issues. Plus, there are question and answer sessions giving people the opportunity to chat about your own projects.

In addition, there will be handouts and advice from the companies present and the opportunity to network with other like minded delegates who are interested in seeing their dream home designed and constructed.


Date: Wed, 12 June 2019

Time: 9:30-4pm

Location: The Tangent Business Hub, Weighbridge Road, Shirebrook, NG20 8RX

Register for free via Eventbrite. 

Bolsover event

Scotland’s Self and Custom Build Portal launches

Scotland Self Build Portal

Self and Custom Builders building in Scotland have a new resource in the recently launched Scotland Self and Custom Build Portal. Like NaCSBA’s Self Build Portal, the site provides advice, guidance and support for anyone wanting to build in Scotland.

The Portal was created thanks to the Self and Custom Build Housing Pilot Challenge Fund, which was launched by Scottish Government to test new models for growing the sector north of the border. Specifically, the Challenge Fund aimed to support new routes and models for anyone wanting to Self Build in Scotland, including alternative finance options, which would also create more opportunities for the companies servicing the sector, such as small building firms.

The Highlands Small Communities Housing Trust (HSCHT) submitted an application for the Challenge Fund with its idea of creating a new dedicated portal for Scotland, to offer support and advice around the Scottish context for Custom and Self Builders. The HSCHT have previously supported a range of Self Build projects and created new finance models to make Self Build more accessible.

Local support

Like NaCSBA’s Self Build Portal, the Scottish portal offers support and advice tailored to Scotland’s devolved laws, giving insight into the local situation, including legislation, finance and Scottish plots. An interactive ‘Getting Started’ tool also gives would-be-builders a ready reckoner of costs depending on the amount of work they’re prepared to do themselves.

Its plot service offers a route to land for anyone looking to build, as well as a service for landowners to advertise their land in Scotland.