Enabling Development: Policies & Legislation – Understanding the Custom Build Homes Sector

Interview with Ted Stevens, Chairman NaSBA

The recent by BuildStore Financial Services Industry Conference – ‘Exploring the latest issues in the property development market, from finance to construction’ brought together developers, lenders and representatives from the construction industry to explore the latest issues, legislation, products and funding availability.

The housing market is now a major priority for the Government and the publication of its Housing Strategy last year presents a unique opportunity for developers to take advantage of the release of public sector land, the push to bring empty properties into use, and the New Homes Bonus Scheme for councils.  The Government is keen to see regional developers play a bigger role in providing new homes, and with commercial lending making a strong comeback through BuildStore, there are real opportunities for developers to profit in the current market.

We thought the presentation from Mario Wolf (DCLG) and Ted Stevens from NaSBA (the National Self Build Association) would interest our readers so we interviewed Ted Stevens Chairman of NaSBA, The voice of the self-build sector.

Enabling Development: Policies & Legislation – Mario Wolf, DCLG and Ted Stevens, NaSBA

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Industry Conference – Exploring the latest issues in the property development market, from finance to construction

The conference, billed as the first of its kind to bring together developers, lenders and representatives from the construction industry to explore the latest issues, legislation, products and funding availability.  Organised by BuildStore Financial Services, the self build, renovation and conversion mortgage specialists, the conference was held at the National Self Build & Renovation Centre in Swindon on May 29th.

The housing market is now a major priority for the Government and the publication of its Housing Strategy last year presents a unique opportunity for developers to take advantage of the release of public sector land, the push to bring empty properties into use, and the New Homes Bonus Scheme for councils.

The Government is keen to see regional developers play a bigger role in providing new homes, and with commercial lending making a strong comeback through BuildStore, there are real opportunities for developers to profit in the current market.

Build-Zone Director Simon Middleton gave this presentation on The Business of Property Development – The new Home Warranty


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How housing associations could make land available for self build

Earlier this month, housing minister Grant Shapps revealed the Government’s ambitions to turn self-build into a mainstream housing option.

At this year’s Grand Designs Live event he called on housing associations and councils to offer up land to self-build communities to drive the ambition forward.

He said a working group he commissioned in February to look at the existing barriers to self-build will report back in the Summer.

Here, Raymond Connor, CEO, BuildStore Financial Services, part of the working group, analyses how housing associations and councils could support the housing minister’s vision.

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Industry Conference – The reality of mortgage lending in the new housebuilding landscape

The conference, billed as the first conference of its kind to help lenders understand the reality of mortgage lending in the new housebuilding landscape was organised by BuildStore Financial Services, the self build, renovation and conversion mortgage specialists and was held at the National Self Build & Renovation Centre in Swindon on March 15th.



A packed audience of heads of lending, valuers, risk managers, surveyors and mortgage policy managers and those involved in setting mortgage strategy attended the free conference to debate the issues surrounding lending policy, and how it matches up with the practical realities of housebuilding regulation.

Modern Methods of Construction – More industry decision makers are recognising the significant benefits of modern methods of construction (MMC): better products and processes, and improved business efficiency, quality, customer satisfaction, and environmental performance.

Eco building – The introduction of the Code for Sustainable Homes in 2007 marked a step-change in sustainable home building. Eco building techniques, natural building fabrics and renewable energy technology will now be required to meet the Code standards.

Self Build –  A lack of suitable and affordable homes is driving the interest in the self build and self procurement sector, and with the Government’s Localism Bill, building your own home is set to become more accessible and more appealing.

The Conference:

Paul Broadhead from the Building Societies Association (BSA) the trade association representing mutual lenders and deposit takers in the UK including all 48 UK building societies started the conference by stating that he was keen to unblock the barriers to finance.

Tim Doherty, from the National Self Build & Renovation Centre took delegates through an excellent presentation on Modern Methods of Construction (MMC) & Eco Building.

Modern Methods of Construction (MMC) & Eco Building

MMC are increasingly favoured as a means of improving quality, reducing time spent on site, and overcoming skills shortages. The eco agenda has also made an impact on construction, with sustainable materials and techniques becoming more popular.  The presentations demonstrated the most common MMC and eco building techniques and the current mortgage lending policies which led in to Simon Middleton from Build Zone presenting a structural warranty providers view on these new methods of house building.

MMC and Ecobuild – A Structural Warranty Providers Perspective

The Build-Zone 10 Year Structural Warranty is DCLG designated warranty scheme provider with provision available for housing, social housing, commercial development, completed and self-build properties.

Build-Zone offer a flexible and competitive approach to warranty provision in all sectors of the construction and building industry, including those working on MMC and Ecobuild projects.

Simon explained how MMC and Ecobuilding projects are able to get Structural Warranty Provision, an insurance policy which covers:

  • defects in design, workmanship and materials causing major damage
  • defective weatherproofing
  • drainage
  • health & safety of occupants
  • contaminated land
  • loss of deposit

MMC and Ecobuild projects can easily obtain cover, largely due to their dedicated technical service company ‘SurveyorLink’ the Build-Zone partner approved inspector scheme – which audits the project at various stages.  Simon explained the technical audit process used and highlighted the risk transfer and claim trends for MMC and ecobuild projects, he surprised the audience by telling them that they had seen no MMC or Eco Build related claim notifications.

Simon concluded:

“Traditional building methods continue to produce workmanship claims on a low frequency basis.

MMC and Eco Building are definitely here for the long term and should be subject to exactly the same risk management and long term understanding as we place on traditional methods of construction”.

To speak to one of Build-Zone’s Structural Warranty experts, call 0845 230 9873 or visit www.build-zone.com

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Join the self build revolution

Raymond Connor of BuildStore Financial Services explains how the self build housing market, with new-found political support, is poised to become mainstream, and why lenders need to act now to benefit from high quality, low-risk lending in this sector.


Source: Mortgage Finance Gazette – 6th January 2011


Structural Warranty Insurance

Against the backdrop of a credit crunch, a recession, and a new government, the mortgage and housing markets have changed for good. With their weaknesses exposed, it is now time to consider the potential for new models of housing procurement, and the funding thereof.  The so-called ‘good times’ of the late 1990s to mid-2000s will never come back. And yet, they are still being used as a gauge for current progress, creating an unrealistic picture of the market going forward.

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