Continuing to lead the way in pioneering housing, the six custom build plots are part of a larger mixed-use development of 140 new homes at Lowfield Green by City of York Council, which includes a community-led housing scheme by Yorspace.
Two of the plots were restricted for first time buyers only, as they offer a more affordable option, and are designed to help people on to the property ladder. This supported the council’s pledge to offer a breadth of options to a range of lower-income households and is in addition to shared ownership of homes from the open market as well as council-owned homes. 40% of all the homes at Lowfield Green will be affordable and Homes England helped fund work done to prepare the site for development.
Custom-build plots were serviced with all required utilities – electricity, water and telephone cable – as well as with road access to enable buyers to get on site. With outline planning permission already secured, construction could begin immediately after detailed planning has been granted.
All plots are large enough for a detached home of between three and five bedrooms with an integrated garage if needed. They also benefit from south-facing back gardens and uninterrupted views of the new village green to the front. This former secondary school site has been sensitively master planned around a new green open space to contribute towards creating an attractive new place to live in the city.
The council is encouraged individuality, creativity and high-quality architecture on the plots. To support buyers in this, CBH published a Design Code. Individual Plot Passports were also available to support architects, designers and homebuilders to design a new home within a broad set of parameters all pre-agreed with the local planning authority. Following these guidelines helped ease securing detailed planning permission and included maximum height and width, advice on materials and colours, and levels of sustainability to be achieved.
To support this innovative self-build project, City of York Council engaged with Custom Build Homes – the UK’s leading enabler of custom build housing – to deliver aspects of the development process including; consultancy, pre-agreed mortgage lending as well as leading the sales and marketing for the site.
Cllr Denise Craghill, executive member for housing and safer neighbourhoods at City of York Council, said: “Supporting first-time buyers to secure a plot and build a home that they can afford is a first in the UK. We’re proud to be offering this addition to our affordable home options.
“We are also delighted to have the expertise of Custom Build Homes to support us with our first serviced self-build plots.
“By implementing our low-energy recommendations from the Design Code, these self-build homes will be affordable to run in the long-term. They will also align with our Passivhaus ambitions for the homes we plan to build as part of our Housing Delivery Programme.”
Tom Connor, head of operations at Custom Build Homes, said: “It is incredibly refreshing to work with a council which is so proactive in their supply of serviced plots for custom-build in their area. Lowfield Green promises to be an excellent place to create a home and live in one of the most beautiful cities in the country. We are delighted to part of the development and sales process.”
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