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Detached Home

Golden Brick

Buying a Golden Brick package at Graven Hill is a simpler way to design and build your own home. We take care of the below ground works for you and the price includes additional benefits. This route is ideal if you want:

  • A detached home 

  • Choice of size, from two to three bed 'pocket plot' or a bungalow to a six bed family home

  • A high level of control over the design, materials and construction of your home

  • Fast tracked planning permission

  • Your foundations, drainage, substructure walls, ground floor slab and on plot connections for utilities delivered for you by Graven Hill

  • A 10-year structural warranty with additional benefits

  • The option to build the notional design provided with the Plot Passport

  • The option to buy a low energy, high performance custom build home, designed, precision-made and assembled on site for you by a specialist supplier

  • The option to build your house in the traditional way if you prefer

Excellent value and equity potential

Building your own home at Graven Hill can be more affordable compared to buying a similar ready-built house. For example, construction of new homes is zero rated for Value Added Tax under current HMRC rules and you can shop around for the best deals from manufacturers of offsite homes and on materials.

Structural warranty and peace of mind

Your Golden Brick package comes with the peace of mind of a 10-year structural warranty. This covers:

  • The substructure (foundations, drainage, substructure walls, ground floor and the superstructure (the house you have constructed)

  • A building control technical audit of your house and all the site inspections

  • Issue of your building control completion certificate and stage completion certifications for your mortgage provider 

  • Insurances that protect both you and your contractors during the construction works for the first 12 months of the build period.

This is an opportunity for like-minded people to build together in a supportive way, for example families with young children or retired people who like the idea of living alongside each other.

Do it on your own or work with others

Some people like the idea of self-building with others. It can help to reduce costs and building as a group is a great way to get to know your neighbours and forge a strong community. If you are open to participating in a group self-build project, let us know.

Your GOLDEN BRICK Journey explained

To give you an idea of what is involved with buying a Golden Brick package (plot plus foundations) at Graven Hill, an EXAMPLE of the typical customer journey in Phase 1A is described below.

  • Imagine your new home. What does it look like? How much space do you need? How many bedrooms and bathrooms? Do you like open plan or separate rooms? Would you like a rural or more urban setting?

    Decide on your budget. Be realistic about what you can afford and consider the market value of your house once built. How much must you borrow to create your ideal home? Investigate mortgages. There are an increasing number of lenders who offer mortgages on self-build homes. Self-build mortgages are different from standard mortgages. Buildstore is a great source of information about this. Funds are normally released to you in stages as your self-build project progresses.

    Did you know…? Under current HMRC rules, you will only pay Stamp Duty on the Golden Brick (land and substructure) and your purchase from us is VAT zero rated. When budgeting, be aware of the rules on Stamp Duty introduced in April 2016 - visit

    Look at available plots online. You can see the 'Plot Passport' for each available plot. This shows the detailed building rules and guidelines for the plot and comes with a notional house design. You can choose to build this notional design, or create your own design to suit your budget.

    How 'hands on' or 'hands off' do you want to be with the construction? Perhaps a low energy, high-performance custom build home is right for you. Components for your home are precision-made by a specialist supplier to your specification and assembled on site for you by their expert team. Many customers like the cost certainty that this route provides, they find it easier than a traditional build.

    We strongly recommend that you talk to custom-build suppliers or professionals such as architects, quantity surveyors, and project managers, to get advice about designs, materials, and costs. 

    You should also talk to other self-builders about their experiences.  Managing costs, time and relationships with your suppliers and contractors is key to a successful self-build project. Your conversations will help you shape your ideas into a proposal that balances your time capacity, design and size preferences, market value and your budget.

    Also consider the services you would need from other professionals and be aware of legal requirements, particularly around health and safety. Here at Graven Hill we are creating a set of Development Rules for self-builders - these will be available on this site early-mid April.  

  • When you have a clear proposal for your new home - including your plot choice, design, size and construction methods - it's time for a detailed conversation with our sales team. We will work with you to ensure your project will, in principle, work on your preferred plot. We will talk you through your self-build journey step by step, from reserving the plot through to construction and moving in. We will guide you all the way.

    You will need to have some outline design drawings prepared, showing the floor plan, elevations and your choice of materials. Following the design rules and guidelines on the Plot Passport makes your self-build journey easier and will help ensure permission to build is confirmed. If you choose a custom build home, the supplier will normally provide drawings and specifications for you.

  • When you confirm that all your finances / mortgage offer are in place and that you are ready to proceed, we can reserve the plot for you. Your design need not be fixed just yet, but fixing your design early can help give you cost certainty. At this stage we ask for a deposit to secure your reservation. Your self-build journey can then begin.

  • The next step is to put the finishing touches to the design of your dream home. You must finalise and completely freeze your design within four months of reserving your plot. We will assign a structural engineer to work with you to finalise the substructure and foundation design. We will then be able to price your Golden Brick accurately and programme the construction of your substructure and foundations. The price will be influenced by a number of factors including the size and footprint of the home you are building, the number of load bearing walls and drainage connections etc. The notional foundations price we indicate assumes that you will build the notional design provided with the Plot Passport. If your design is bigger or more complex, the actual price for this will be higher.

    With your design frozen and your drawings developed to RIBA Stage 4, now is the time to secure the necessary permissions. Getting planning permission is made quick and easy at Graven Hill. Provided your design follows all the rules and guidelines in the Plot Passport and complies with the Graven Hill Local Development Order, Energy Standards and Design Code, you can expect confirmation of Planning Permission in under one month from registration.

    Did you know...? Planning permission fees, Building Control inspections, 10-year structural warranty and completion certificate are all included in the price of your Golden Brick package.

  • Your dream home is moving ever closer. With Planning Permission and Building Regulations Compliance confirmed, it's time to exchange contracts and pay a 10 per cent deposit on the Golden Brick total price. Sales contracts must be exchanged within seven months of reserving your plot. After exchange of contracts, we will within an agreed timeframe, design and build the substructure and foundations of your new home, and complete the Golden Brick package for you.

  • When we are five working days away from completing your substructure and foundation, we will issue to you a formal notice with a date for completion of the sales contract, in 10 working days time, when the remainder of the purchase price must be paid. Following completion, you are all set for construction of your new home to begin.

  • If you have opted for a custom-build home, you could be moving in very soon - this construction method is high-quality, can be much quicker than a traditional build and it provides cost certainty.  More traditional builds take longer and you will need to engage a builder, other trades and possibly a project manager, unless you have these skills yourself. Whatever method you choose, taking care to comply with the terms of the sales contract will help ensure your build goes smoothly. Graven Hill is a beacon of good practice for health and safety and we will work with you to ensure the highest standards are maintained on your build. Construction of your home must be completed within 24 months of completion of the sales contract. Welcome home!

What does your Golden Brick dream home look like?

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