Low cost modular custom build Starter Home costs less than £50k

An innovative design for a modular Starter Home has won the 2016 Self Build on a Shoestring competition. The design delivers a low energy, simple-to-construct 66 sq m house for £49,600. If the homes were mass produced the cost would come down to just £46,300 (excluding land costs).

The team behind the design want to offer the home fully finished, or (to help reduce costs further) as a ‘self finish’ option. The modular building is highly flexible – so it can be clad in a variety of materials, fitted with a flat or itched roof, built as a terrace or a standalone property, and it can even be ‘stacked’ to form a block of flats. A compact version is also available with a 44 sq m floorplate.

Called ‘modulhus’, the design was developed by Bristol-based self build consultancy Ecomotive, working alongside Design and Planning practice Barton Wilmore. The entry won the £5,000 top prize, and it was recently exhibited at Grand Designs Live.

The winning design illustrates that it is possible to deliver the Government’s new Starter Homes policy ambition through the custom build development route and should be of considerable interest to custom build developers and enablers who may be asked to provide Starter Homes for young first time home owners on larger sites when the Government’s policy is finalised next year. More detail on custom build Starter Homes is set out in our toolkit in the Briefing Note on how the planning system can generate more opportunities.

Images and further information about the winning design, together with a detailed cost report can be downloaded here.

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