Why Choose Contour Architectural Designs?

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70+ Years Experience

Highly Recommended

Fully Insured

New Build Properties

Would it be cost effective for me to buy a piece of land and build a property on it?

Why not speak to your local estate agent to give you an idea of the local housing market and to discuss whether you will be able to build the home you want for the price you want.  If you invest too much on any project you’re unlikely to see a return on your money.

What sort of things do I need to consider when buying a plot of land to build on?

Contour Architectural Designs Ltd ("Contour Designs") offer a free onsite initial consultation where you can discuss your design plans.  However, the following will give you some idea of what things to think about when buying a plot of land, but this list is not exclusive:

  1. The size of the actual plot. Planning permission granted by the local council has set criteria about the size of the property in relation to the overall size of the plot of land it sits on, proximity to other houses etc. as well as adequate garden and car parking space.
  2. Connections to local utilities, especially sewage pipes. You can not build over an existing drain, although it may be possible to move these. In certain areas, if prone to flooding, you may also need a flood risk assessment completed.
  3. Will the design of your dream home fit in with the local street scene? or will it be overbearing or at odds with other properties in the same street,
  4. Conservation issues both in regard to trees and protected species such as badgers, bats etc.

How much will it cost me to build? And how long will it take?

There are many factors involved working out the cost building a property to the price of the type of paint you will use!  Building works cost anything from £1,500 to £2,400 per square metre. Therefore a 4 metre x 5 metre extension will cost in the region of £40,000-£58,000.  Fitting out a new kitchen or bathroom could cost a further £4,500-£20,000 upwards depending on your chosen specification.  Typically it can take 7 months plus to complete a new build.

Where can I find further inspiration for my project?

Why not take a look at our inspiration boards on our website - 

Do I need to worry if there is Japanese Knotweed on the land?

Japanese Knotweed is known to cause damage to buildings, walls, hard standing, drainage systems and flood defences.  Many mortgage lenders will only lend on a property affected by knotweed if there is a Knotweed Management Plan (KMP) in place by a recognised Japanese knotweed eradication company.  If the seller of a property does not disclose the presence of knotweed on the Law Society Property Information TA6 Form during the purchase of the property, the seller could be guilty of misrepresentation.

Under the Anti-social Behaviour, Crime and Policing Act 2014, councils can serve a notice (known formerly as an ASBO) on those failing to control knotweed.  It is against the law to plant or otherwise cause knotweed to grow in the wild under Section 14 of the Wildlife and Countryside Act 1981.

Do I need Planning Permission for a new build property?

Yes all new buildings are subject to local planning permission rules.

Would my new build properties be subject to Building Regulations?

Yes all new buildings are subject to Building Regulations.

I want to build in a conservation area, does this make any difference?

Legislation allows local authorities additional powers to control types of alterations to existing building as well as higher standard of design of new buildings within any conservation area. In the past many councils interpreted the legislation as that all new build properties must be totally in keeping with the existing buildings. However the move is now to ensure that there is a level of high quality design within these areas, rather than only to replicate exactly what is there. However what is high quality of design is very much open to interpretation.  Contour Designs are able to draw up technical building plans for you which can then be taken to the council to be discussed at a pre-application planning meeting.for advice on how your plans might be received if they were to be presented to the council for planning permission.

Why might I want to take my design to a Pre-Application Meeting?

Regardless of whether you are building in a conservation area or not designing a new build property which meets planning permission criteria can be a tricky business.  A pre -application meeting allows you to go and talk to the council and show them a plan of your design to receive feedback on whether there are any areas of major concern.  This meeting does not prejudice whether you will receive planning permission or not, but does help you maximise the probability of doing so by taking onboard comments made before actually submitting your plan for formal  planning permission.

Why may I be asked to pay a Community Infrastructure Levy if I build a new property?

If you are building a new property some councils will ask you to pay a Community Infrastructure Levy.  It is a charge introduced under the Planning Act (2008) whereby councils can charge those building new properties monies to help deliver infrastructure to support any new development of their area.  However not all councils have decided to charge this levy.

What is the “Local Plan”?

The Local Plan is a local council policy document which sets out how development and growth requirements in a specified geographical area will be met in the future.  This includes the issue of housing.  The Local Plan may impact on how requests for planning permission re new buildings is seen in the future.

What do I need to do now?

If you want see how Contour Designs can help you take your first steps to designing and building your new home, why not take a look at our website -  www.contour-designs.co.uk to find out more.  If you want to see what other services Contour Designs offer, these are listed under our Services page.  Alternatively, you can contact us directly using our Contact Us if you have specific questions or want to arrange an initial consultation.

Our Core Services

Site / Building Surveys

Building Regulations Drawings

Planning Permission & Architectural Designs

Topographical Surveys

Structural Design

Drainage Surveys

Flood Risk Statements

Get In Touch

For more information on precisely what our architectural consultants and designers can do for your project simply pick up the phone and call our office on 01268 690974 or send a message through our contact page. Whether you’re making a general enquiry or wish to discuss a specific project, a member of our team will be only too happy to help.


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