Small site bargain deal

Small sites are “flavour of the month”

- and are likely to remain so for many months.

What an opportunity for owners of small sites!

Special offer

Housing Minister has opened the door to sites under half a hectare (1.1 acres) with nine or fewer houses.

Resolute Estates is a specialist in small sites. Hooray!

In early March the Minister published a draft update to the National Planning Policy Framework. Here is an extract from the draft:

"64. Provision of affordable housing should not be sought for developments that are not on major sites . . ."

And:

"69. Small sites can make an important contribution to meeting the housing requirement of an area, and are often built-out relatively quickly. To promote the development of a good mix of sites local planning authorities should:

a) ensure that at least 20% of the sites identified for housing in their plans are of half a hectare or less;

b) use tools such as area-wide design assessments and Local Development Orders to help bring small sites forward;

c) support the development of windfall sites through their policies and decisions, giving great weight to the benefits of using suitable sites within existing settlements for homes; and

d) work with developers to encourage the sub-division of large sites where this could help to speed up the delivery of homes.

70. Neighbourhood Planning Groups should also consider the opportunities for allocating small sites suitable for housing in their area.

71. Where an allowance is to be made for windfall sites as part of anticipated supply, there should be compelling evidence that they will provide a reliable source of supply. Any allowance should be realistic having regard to the strategic housing land availability assessment, historic windfall delivery rates and expected future trends. Plans should consider the case for setting out policies to resist inappropriate development of residential gardens, for example where development would cause harm to the local area.

72. Local planning authorities should support the development of entry level exception sites, suitable for first time buyers (or those looking to rent their first home), unless the need for such homes is already being met within the authority’s area. These sites should be outside existing settlements, on land which is not already allocated for housing, and should:

a) comprise a high proportion of entry-level homes that will be offered for discounted sale or for affordable rent; and

b) be adjacent to existing settlements, proportionate in size to them, not compromise the protection given to areas or assets of particular importance in this Framework, and comply with any local design policies and standards.”

And that's not all

  • A site with an area of less than 0.5 hectares (1.0 acres) and nine or fewer houses is exempt from several expensive requirements usually imposed by an LPA. That saves on the cost of reports for a planning application and widens the areas where permission might be granted.
  • “Provision of affordable housing should not be sought for developments that are not on major sites.” A “major site” is defined as larger than one hectare or with ten units or more.

Here’s the offer for first ten new instructions*

  • We will reduce our no-win-no-fee commission to 12%.
  • We will guarantee that no more than £25k will be deducted for expenses - if it costs more, it comes out of our commission.

*Neither of us is under any obligation until we have a proper legal agreement. This is still a serious business with a lot of money at stake.