How to Build Your Dream Home from Scratch

How to Build Your Dream Home from Scratch

If you have an image in mind of how your dream home would look, and if you’re set on turning that dream property into your actual home, you’ll want to know how to go about it.

Most people when they’re looking for something more from a home, will sell their current property and find one on the market that better suits their lifestyle. But if you have something more specific in mind, you’ll want to consider building your dream home from scratch.

The trouble is though that most of us don’t know too much about how to organise a successful self-build project, so to guide you through how to go about building your dream home, here are a few steps you’ll need to take.

Find a block of land

Before you can start building, you’ll need to find a block of land to build your dream home on. This is something that might take a bit of time and research, as you’ll want to look into the best area to build your home, and the best type of land to buy.

If you have a specific location in mind, this can help narrow down the search, but can make things a little tricky if there aren’t any suitable blocks of land in that area. To find blocks for sale in a specific area, you could walk or drive around the area you’re hoping to build in, and simply keep an eye out for building plots.

You could also look online through real estate websites, as often blocks of land are listed as well as already build properties. If you find your block online though, remember to view it first, to check that the size and location will suit your home, and enquire about the land itself. You want the build itself to be as easy as possible, so you want to make sure there’s no hidden issues that can prevent or delay your build.

If you’re struggling to find a block of land in the area you’re hoping to build in, you can also buy to demolish. This just means you’d buy a property, and have it demolished so that you can replace it with your dream home. Sometimes, this can work out cheaper, depending on the quality of the current house, the area, and the land beneath it.

Research the costs of building a home and set a budget

Building your dream home is likely to cost a lot more than buying an already standing property, but if you work out costs in advance, and set yourself a budget, you’ll be prepared for the expenses and it will be worth it in the long run.

To work out costs, you’ll need to consider the price of the land you’ll need to buy, choose which building materials to go with, and get quotes from the professionals you intend to hire.

Working out an estimated cost for the entire budget will take a lot of research, and you’ll need to talk to a fair few different people to gather opinions and quotes, but once you’ve got a rough figure in mind, you’ll be able to start budgeting.

When setting a budget, take into consideration any unforeseen obstacles that you may need to overcome, rather than allowing just enough to cover the estimated cost. This way if any unexpected issues arise, you’ll be able to take the steps necessary to overcome them, without financially struggling, and without letting it delay the building process too much.

It’s also important to be realistic with your budget, don’t spend more than you have. This might mean limiting the size of your home, or cutting back on luxurious features, but you’ll be happier in the long run, if you haven’t put yourself in a position of financial hardship to achieve your dream home.

Decide how you’ll finance the build

Once you’ve worked out costs and budgeted, you’ll need to think about where the money for the build is going to come from.

The best way to finance your self build project would be to use any savings, as this would mean you’d have a set budget, and could continue living in your current home throughout the build.

You could also use the profit or equity from a previous home, rather than putting that into simply buying a new, already built property. This can be a good way to go as you’ll be spending what you have, which will help you work out a sensible budget.

Or, some mortgage providers will lend for self build projects, but you might need to shop around a bit to find such providers. A self build mortgage will also be slightly different from a conventional mortgage, as often, you’ll receive parts of the loan in stages as the building progresses. If you’re going down the mortgage route, then you’ll also need some savings to put towards a deposit, as much like with conventional mortgages, providers will usually only cover 75% of the cost.

Get a team of professionals together

This is one of the most important stages of the project, choosing who you want to work with. You’ll need to assemble a team of professionals who have experience working on self build projects, and can help see your project through to completion.

You’ll need to hire an architect or a designer to begin with, to help you draw up the blueprints for your dream home. An architect can offer advice about structural designs, and the type and size of land needed for the project. They can also help manage the project, meaning they can instruct any other professionals you hire.

When hiring an architect though, choose one who you get on with, one that you think will be reliable and dedicated, as you’ll be working with them for a fair amount of time. Self build projects can take a couple of years, from planning to completion, so you’ll want to hire an architect that you feel you’d have a good relationship with, as you’ll be consulting and working together for a while.

Once you and your architect have come up with the design of your home, you’ll need to start looking for a builder. There are plenty of builders who are experienced in self build projects, so you’ll probably have a fair few to choose from. Again, it’s important to choose a builder you get on with, but most importantly, you want a builder you can trust. Before hiring a builder, ask to see testimonials from previous clients, preferably clients who hired them for a project similar to yours.

You’ll also need to work with plumbers and electricians to get your home in full working order. But with every tradesman you hire, make sure they have a good reputation and previous experience. There are plenty of sites offering client testimonials and recommendations, so choose your team based on reputability, rather than just going with those offer the lowest rates.


So there you have a breakdown of some of the steps you’ll need to take to go about building your dream home from scratch. Start with working out your budget, and plan for what you can afford, and you should sail through the building process without any financial stress.

Hire a team you’re happy to work with for the duration of the build, and pick truly professional tradespeople that you can trust. If you’ve decided to go ahead with building your dream home, you’ll want everything to be perfect, so choose a team that can help your dream become a reality.

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