On March 27 the Department for Communities and Local Government’s National Planning Policy Framework published its report to mixed reviews.
Detractors fear too much greenbelt land will be sacrificed in the name of housing stock. But many support the common sense reforms that include planning policy cut down from a 1,200-page document to a bite-sized 50 pages.
Local authorities have a vital role. For the first time, they are being empowered to evaluate the needs of self-builders and provide land opportunities for building on, mainly by drawing on brownfield sites used previously.
Self-procurement specialists are already helping local authorities by evidencing demand based on their own data, creating a virtuous circle set to make a contribution to the government’s ambitious plans for sustainable homes of the future.
So where does this leave brokers who are likely to see more self-build clients looking for funding?
Self-procurement provides an opportunity, but while the range of products has grown and improved, it is questionable whether the majority of brokers are equipped to serve this niche properly.
By using a specialist, brokers can get the expert advice needed. The opportunity is also there for cross-selling of protection products and the chance to review mortgage requirements over time, creating long-term relationships that – like the best built houses – have strong foundations and longevity.