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Self build mortgages.

Self build

Building your own home can be an incredible experience. Get help with a self build mortgage.

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Find a self build mortgage.

Self build

All you need to know about mortgages for self builders.

If you’re ready to consider a self build project it’s useful to have the latest information to hand. Here is a summary of some of the things you should be aware of with our self build mortgage criteria.

  1. Available for several projects and build types, including new projects from scratch; conversions; renovations; knock down and rebuilds; and mid or partially built projects.
  2. We can consider a range of construction types. This includes modern methods of construction (known as MMC) although for some build types we will need the scheme to be BOPAS registered.
  3. You must have detailed planning permission and building regulations in place, with the build being supervised by a qualified person. View our [self build warranty form] for acceptable professions and warranty providers.
  4. Mortgage funds are released in stages as the build progresses, rather than all upfront, so you don’t have to pay interest on the whole amount from the start. We will work with you to agree flexible stage payments to suit your project, at each stage we will need to conduct a valuation and charge a stage release fee of £100.
  5. You can use your self build mortgage funds to purchase land, should you need a plot to build on. We will require full costings to be provided, so take a look at our [self build budget planner] to help you get started.
  6. The total funds lent must not any at time exceed 80% of the current value of the land or property under construction
  7. Self build mortgages are available on a repayment or an interest only basis.
  8. Your property must be completed within 24 months of the initial advance.
  9. Once your build is complete and you have supplied us with the completion certificate you will be able to switch penalty-free to our range of follow-on mortgages for existing borrowers, as long as your circumstances have not changed and you have not had any reduction in household income since you took out your initial self build mortgage.

We know self build mortgages can seem confusing, so we’re here to help! Get in touch so we can answer your questions and explain the process.


Self build mortgages – your questions answered.

A self build mortgage is a home loan taken out to build a property, not just for brand new projects but also can include partially built projects, conversion, renovations and knock down and rebuilds.

Self build mortgages are for when funds are needed for construction and renovation purposes, whilst a residential mortgage is for purchasing a property which is already-built and habitable. Additionally, with a self build mortgage the money is released in stages as the build progresses, rather than in a lump sum.

Self build mortgage lenders will have their own requirements around when you can release stage payments. At Suffolk Building Society we operate flexible stage payments which can include milestones such as buying the land, laying foundations and making the building wind and watertight right through to buying fixtures and fittings, with the final stage always retained until the build is complete. We recommend you liaise with your project manager to ensure the funds are requested at the right intervals to maintain cash flow. At each stage release we’ll need to instruct a valuer to inspect the property, and charge a stage release fee totalling £100 .

You’ll need to check this with your self build mortgage lender. Our self build mortgages are only for personal use, so borrowers must live in the property themselves once it has been completed.

Once you have finished your self build project you will need to inform your lender, usually supplying a completion certificate. At this point the last stage of funds will be released for your final bills to be paid. Subject to the terms of your mortgage you should be able to remortgage onto a standard residential deal. At Suffolk Building Society we offer follow-on mortgages for existing borrowers, as long as circumstances have not changed and there has not been any reduction in household income.

It’s down to self build mortgage lenders to assess which methods of construction they’re happy to accept. At Suffolk Build Society we can consider a variety of build types, including those using modern methods of construction (MMC) and ones primarily built offsite. In some instances we will require these schemes to be accredited through BOPAS, which gives assurance properties are sufficiently durable and readily saleable for a minimum of 60 years.

There are some clear benefits to building your own home, however it’s no small task, and there are both advantages and challenges that you need to be aware of from the outset.

Perhaps the most obvious advantage of building your own home is the ability to make it completely bespoke. You could choose to integrate energy-efficient systems, which could provide savings in the long term and be more effective than retro-fitting. Additionally, self builders may be able to claim back VAT on labour and many material costs. It’s best to check this fully as rules and regulations can change.

However, some of the frustrations can come about from an early stage, starting with the lengthy and sometimes complex issue of gaining planning permission. There’s also your self build mortgage application which is more complex than a residential mortgage and will likely take longer to be processed. Speaking of mortgages, interest rates are usually higher than a residential mortgage as there is greater risk to the lender and there are usually conditions placed upon self build mortgages by lenders to protect their risk

As with any financial decision you should take time to carefully consider your options.

Before you apply for a self build mortgage most lenders will require you to have certain things in place. This includes finding a suitable plot of land, obtaining planning permission and having detailed plans of the property drawn up along with a realistic projection of costs. Unless you already own the land, you will also need to have a deposit saved up and some funds put aside.


We have conversations, not algorithms.

Our decisions are made by experts, not computers. We need to calculate the financials, but we understand there’s more behind a mortgage than the numbers on a page. We can’t promise to lend to everyone and anyone, but we’ll consider most applications on an individual basis.

Ready to go? We’d love to hear from you. Get in touch with our friendly and knowledgeable team.

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Call 0330 123 0723

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