Should You Build Your Own Home?

A self-build could be an exciting alternative to buying an existing property. This involves hiring contractors to build a home from scratch to your specs (or designing and building it yourself if you’re particularly ambitious). Below is a guide to help you decide whether a self-build is the right option for you.

Why build your own home?

When you buy an existing property, you’re restricted to what is already out there on the market. Building your own home allows you to pick and choose your dream features in order to create the perfect home. From the size of each room to the amount of natural light pouring in, you get to decide everything. This is a big attractor for many people.

Alternatively, if customising every detail sounds like too much work, there’s always the option of looking at existing house plans. This could save you a lot of money on architect fees by not having to design every aspect from scratch. At the same, you may still be able to make a few of your own small adjustments, treating this as a template to work from.

Self-builds can also work out cheaper in the long run than buying an existing property. It costs a lot less to build a house than it does to buy an existing one of the same size – if you’re using a mortgage to fund your self-build, you’re likely to pay it off more quickly as a result. Because these properties are new, they also require less maintenance in the long run. On top of this, you can design them to be as energy-efficient as possible in order to save money on energy bills.

The cons of a self-build

Unfortunately, self-builds tend to cost more upfront. Self-build mortgages often come with higher down payments (often a minimum of 20%). If you don’t already own land, you may also have to consider the cost of acquiring land. Consequently, they’re more popular among those that already own property – having a home to sell makes it easier to fund the upfront costs. You’ll then likely have to rent out somewhere temporarily as your home is being built.

Building a house also takes more time and hassle than buying a house. While buying a home can be a lengthy process, it’s not as lengthy as building a house. In fact, the average house takes eight months to build. This doesn’t include time spent designing it, handling paperwork and getting permits (you’ll need to obtain planning permission first in most cases).

So, should you build your own home?

A self-build requires you to pour more money and time in initially, but in the long run it can be a lot more rewarding. It’s the opportunity to make your dream home a reality. You just need to make sure that you’ve a) got the funds b) got the land and c) got the permission to build on it. Patience is also essential when building your own home. It will all pay off in the end.