Is it worth building on your spare plot of land?

Do you have a plot of land that you don’t use, don’t know what to do with, or is wasted space? Maybe you’re lucky enough to have a house that sits on a large plot of land but you’re not much of a gardener. Well, you could be sitting on a pot of cash.

The country always seems to be in a bit of a housing crisis, with more people looking for a home than there are houses available. You will have seen new homes and housing developments popping up all over the place. The situation has also contributed to the rise in people joining the self-build club. A bonus for you if you do have some land going spare!

The question is, are you up for the challenge of building on the plot yourself or would you rather sell the land on for someone else to get to build their dream property? Unless you happen to be an experienced builder or property developer, it can often be more beneficial to simply sell the land on.

When working out if it is worth selling the plot of land you are sitting on, there are many factors you should take into consideration. Below we’ve outlined a number of the most important things to think about.


Is my plot worth building on?

The majority of the time, people will be looking to buy a plot of land so they can build on it. This means that a building plot gets its value from the property that can be built on it.

As a general rule, a plot of land is responsible for one third to one half of the overall property value. So, you should take into consideration the scope to build when thinking about the value of your land. Below are a few questions you should ask yourself:

Where are the boundaries and what access is there to the plot?

If your plot of land is within close quarters to neighbours, make sure you are aware of where the boundaries lie. If you’re unsure, it’s a good idea to have a discussion with your neighbours and agree where you both think they should be, or consult the original plans.

In some cases, there may only be access to the plot via a road or track that is owned by a neighbour. This then means access relies on right of way and, ultimately, permission from your neighbours. If permission isn’t granted you’re in a bit of a sticky situation!

Involving any neighbours early on in the process will, hopefully, prevent any arguments or hard feelings (not everyone appreciates new houses being built in their neighbourhood!)

Is there access to services?

This one is mainly relevant for plots in rural areas. It means, is there a connection to mains water, gas and electricity at or near the site? If not then getting the plot of land hooked up to these main services is going to add a considerable cost to any potential development.

There are off mains options for all these services but these can also come with a hefty price tag. It’s worth researching.

Will people want to live there?

This may seem like a bit of an obvious one. If you are thinking about selling off half of your garden, you need to consider whether anyone is going to want to live in close quarters to you. And, if you want them living in your garden for that matter! 

Check if there are restrictions on development

Always do your research when considering selling your plot for development. In some cases there may be legal documents in place that restrict development of the site. These documents can often be removed or insured against, but that would add another cost.

It’s important to bear in mind all these factors that could add extra costs for the buyer. The more of these there are, the more value is taken off you plot of land.


Planning Permission

Any plot of land is valuable. There are a number of factors that will influence how much you can expect to get from selling your land, these include:

  • Size
  • Location
  • Future development potential.

Gaining planning permission can be a lengthy and time-consuming process. So, plots of land with planning permission can be worth as much as 10 times more than land without.

There are a couple of different types of planning permission you can get on your plot. These are Outline Planning Permission (OPP) and Detailed Planning Permission (DPP).

The OPP permission is a basic overview plan which outlines an agreed principle of what could be built. For example, a three-bedroom, two storey dwelling. Whereas the DPP looks further into the details such as dimensions and building materials.

A DPP may put off potential buyers as they won’t have as much freedom to build what they want, but to get the most profit from your land you should at least have OPP.

With all this knowledge you will have a better idea of how valuable your plot of land is. Check your area for similar plots that are for sale and compare. Always seek professional advice too!

Get in touch with us today if you’ve got a plot of land in North Norfolk that you’re looking to sell. Here at J S Building Services, we are keen to buy and develop unwanted land.

If you’ve decided you would like to build on the plot yourself but don’t know what to do next, see our article about building your own house. We also offer a consultancy service to provide you with help and advice when moving forward with your new build project.