When considering self-build through the planning system, the Isle of Wight Council uses the definition given in the Housing and Planning Act 2015. This states that self-build and custom house building are defined as:
“…the building or completion by – (a) individuals, (b) associations of individuals, or (c) persons working with or for individuals of houses to be occupied as homes by those individuals. But it does not include the building of a house on a plot acquired from a person who builds the house wholly or mainly to plans or specifications decided or offered by that person”.
This definition is important as it underlines the importance of the role that the future occupier takes. Where a developer delivers speculative units [notwithstanding a purchaser could make various choices during the construction phase (e.g. kitchen and bathrooms)] for profit, this is outside the definition. If the future occupier is involved in the full planning process it is recognisable as within the definition of self or custom build. The council, as the local planning authority, does not consider that a dwelling built by developers, or industry professionals, on land that they own (either wholly or in part) with the stated intent of being for rent, a second home or for holiday use, falls within the definition given above.