It is a common misconception that it’s very expensive to self build. Large, high-spec self builds will come at a premium, but the following projects all have build costs of £100,000 and under.
Please note: We’ve not included the plot price in these build costs – plot costs vary so wildly depending on location, and the plot circumstance varies between these projects defeating the object of comparison.
Build cost: £90,000
Jason Thawley took on the design and most of the labour in order to build his 80m² home in Brighton for £90,000.
Build cost: £80,000
Niall and Helen Maxwell used local materials and labour where possible to help them stick to their £80,000 build budget.
Build cost: £100,000
Robin Cochrane built the majority of his home on a DIY basis, calling in friends and family to help with the foundations and glazing.
Build cost: £98,500
Rob and Alithea Dawson built their remarkable energy-efficient oak-frame home on a DIY basis for just £98,500.
Build cost: £59,000
Gordon Aitken roped in the help of his builder father and chief joiner brother to help build his two-storey, four bedroom home for under £60,000.
What factors affect build cost?
- Location: land costs and labour costs can vary depending on location
- Size: bigger houses will cost more to build (although two storeys will reduce the cost per m² of foundations and roofs)
- Shape and layout: simple and square is the most cost-effective option
- Chosen specification: high-end products will understandably eat up your budget
- Involvement: the less involved you are, the more expensive the process will be
Build cost: £59,000
Jennifer Hope was just 21 when she founded The Wee House Company to offer a solution to Britain’s housing shortage – and practised what she preached when she and partner Mark Higgens built their own 40m² home for well under £100k.
Build cost: £68,000
Richard Baldwin used insulated concrete formwork (ICF) in the DIY construction of his £68,000 self build in Derbyshire. The use of ICF also means that the home is so well-insulated it has impressively low running costs.
Build cost: £95,000
Mike and Jane Fry kept their build costs down by taking on much of the work themselves, and by creating a site at the end of their own garden. The finished, one-bedroom home had build costs of £95,000.
Build cost: £35,000
Clare Williamson and Oscar Baldry have transformed a former newsagents in Shrewsbury (a building they purchased for £33,500) for £35,000 by taking on a lot of the building work themselves.
Build cost: £67,000
Justin and Linda Tyers have built a straw bale, timber-frame home in Exmoor National Park for just £67,000. The couple not only designed the home themselves, but also took on a lot of the labour.