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The Complete Self Build Resource Pack (contd)

sect14aThe Scope of the
Resource Pack

Following this introductory section the information in this pack has been set out in six further sections, each addressing different aspects of self build housing and listing the resources available to self-builders.

A living room at Diggers Self Build, Brighton

Each deals with a different aspect of resourcing a self build housing project, ranging from how to finance the building costs using grants or loans or both; how the local authority can help and how to make use of the planning system; who to approach for funding for particular types of housing proposals through to advice on "resources" of a less tangible nature - such as free advice etc.

Section Two: Getting Organised

After examining the issues around the question of building alone or as a group, Section 2 outlines information on group organisation and illustrates some of the different ownership models that self builders might be interested in.

Section Three: Local Authority Support

This section examines what is available to self-builders setting out the different ways that local authorities can have an input into projects - whether through use of planning procedures or through actual financial input. This section describes examples of existing procedures and policy while also mentioning some areas of planning legislation which could be used more positively or creatively in support of self build housing initiatives.

Section Four: Grants

'Grants for Housing' sets out the agenda for most new housing provision in England today outlining the major means of funding for housing associations and for groups involved in self build housing. The range of financing options, available as grants through the Housing Corporation, are described along with the criteria for eligible projects - in terms of the tenure model, type of scheme, partnership models, any innovatory aspects or preferred groups that may have priority for particular forms of financial support etc. This section also sets out other grant funding options currently available to support self-build housing initiatives but which may be subject to changes or are time-limited. The range of funding includes those offered through national and transnational (European) government programmes.

The advantages of using or applying for a particular form of funding support is outlined as are any disadvantages or limitations which may already be known through the experience of those currently working on self build projects.

Section Five: Loans

This section outlines the different loan finance options that can be applied for. It describes the range of different private and community finance initiatives that are available but which will rarely meet such a large proportion of housing development costs as are covered by the government subsidy. The section offers advice for following alternative self-help financial models such as those offered by co-operatives, community financial initiatives and credit unions. The advantages and limitations of following a particular route or undertaking a particular type of project are highlighted where appropriate.

Section Six: Project Development and Training

Sets out some of the ways in which self build housing projects can and do incorporate training. The section outlines the current government and other, subsidised, training activities - describing current methods for funding, organising, managing and undertaking both on-site and off-site training activities. The advantages and disadvantages of partnering self-build housing with training are described. The section also outlines other project development activities such as working with consultants and architects.

Section Seven: Sources, references, useful organisations and Glossary

For those who haven't yet talked about their ideas or project proposals there are a number of agencies listed in the Reference Section of this publication along with other useful sources and organisations. The section includes a glossary and lists the references, publications and sources providing general information which can be especially useful to those embarking on a self build housing project. The section also incorporates information profiles on a selection of recent self build housing projects which illustrate the range of different funding, partnership, ownership and special needs options and activities that can, and do, go to make up a self build housing scheme today.

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