A comprehensive guide to designing and building your own house


Embarking on the journey to design and build your own house is an exciting and rewarding endeavour. From selecting the perfect location to creating a dream home that suits your lifestyle, the process involves careful planning, creativity, and adherence to local regulations. In this comprehensive guide, we will walk you through the key steps to design and build your own house.

Define your goals and budget

Before diving into the design process, clearly define your goals for the new home. Consider the number of bedrooms, bathrooms, and any specific features or design elements you desire. Simultaneously, establish a realistic budget that includes not only the construction costs but also allowances for unexpected expenses and potential changes during the project.

Selecting the right location

Choose a location that aligns with your lifestyle and preferences. Factors to consider include proximity to work, schools, amenities, and the overall community atmosphere. Investigate planning constraints in the area, such as conservation areas, flood zones, or other restrictions that may impact your design.

Engage with professionals

Building your own house involves various disciplines, and it’s crucial to assemble a team of professionals to guide you through the process. Consult with architects, structural engineers, and quantity surveyors to ensure your vision is both feasible and within your budget.

Designing your dream home

Work closely with your architect to develop a detailed design that reflects your preferences, lifestyle, and the local environment. Consider energy-efficient and sustainable design principles to reduce your long-term environmental impact and energy bills.

Planning permission

Familiarise yourself with the planning permission process. Submit your detailed plans to the local planning authority and be prepared to address any concerns or modifications they may require. It’s essential to have planning permission granted before moving forward with the construction phase.

Building regulations approval

Obtain building regulations approval, a separate process from planning permission. Building regulations ensure that your home complies with safety, energy efficiency, and accessibility standards. Your architect or designer can help you navigate this process.

Selecting a builder/contractor

Research and choose a reputable builder with experience in the type of project you are undertaking. Obtain multiple quotes, check references, and review previous projects to ensure the builder is the right fit for your vision.

Construction phase

During the construction phase, stay involved and informed. Regularly communicate with your builder, visit the site, and address any concerns promptly. Be prepared for unforeseen challenges and work closely with your team to find solutions.

Interior design and finishes

As construction nears completion, focus on interior design and finishes. Select materials, fixtures, and finishes that align with your design vision and budget. Pay attention to details that will enhance the comfort and functionality of your home.

Completion and moving in

Once construction is complete, conduct a thorough inspection with your builder to ensure everything meets your expectations. Obtain any necessary certificates and permissions, and then enjoy moving into your dream home.


Designing and building your own house is a fulfilling experience that requires careful planning, collaboration with professionals, and adherence to regulations. By following these steps, you can navigate the process smoothly and create a home that not only meets your needs but exceeds your expectations. Good luck on your journey to homeownership!

If you’re based around Cheltenham, Gloucester, or surrounding areas we at PSK would love the opportunity to help you with your building project. Get in contact today.