How to design your self build home

Bringing your dream home to life requires careful planning for cost control.

Every design decision can affect how and where you spend your budget. At Facit Homes, we connect your design choices with realistic construction costs throughout, so you get a design that you love and a home you can afford to build.

Design your home with architects

“Recognizing the need is the primary condition for design.” - Charles Eames

Imitation is not innovation. Contemporary architects push the boundaries of what is creatively and physically possible, considering multiple influences and pioneering construction approaches to deliver sustainable architecture and a design solution.

Working with the right architect is important. Once you've discovered the architect or architectural practice that suits you, we have some top tips to remember.

A pitch roof home with a flat roof section

Advice for a self build project:

  1. Get a handle on costs as soon as possible. If you can get cost input from a professional at the start of your project, you’ll give yourself the keys to success.

  2. Keep your design realistic. While you will be led by the experts, don’t design too big or too daring. Make it feasible and affordable! Cost is irrevocably linked to design, but it can still be a beautiful new home.

  3. Consider planning from the get go. Choose to work with both an experienced designer and a planning consultant. Consider a planning pre application.

  4. Last but not least - make sure to plan how the design will be built from the start. The construction of the home is a crucial part of all three previous tips. It will affect cost, design and the planning application.

Cost control in design development

Designing your home with an architect is an exciting journey. While we design and build a Facit Home to deliver as much value for our customer as possible, we have also built designs created by other architects.

Adjusting the design to control costs can be project-saving for our customers. The size, style and complexity of your home are all adjustable in our 3D model if you need to reduce build costs and meet your budget. We also have an assisted self finish option, where you complete the interiors yourself to save costs.

Designing your home with Facit Homes

Intelligent design makes a difference. Design is “a way to understand the world and how you can change it”.

Understanding the experiences and aspirations of our customers helps us to guide the design development of their dream home. We've simplified our project process below to show where, when and how the design is created.

Step 1: Discovery

You’ve discovered Facit Homes, appreciate our architectural style and cost per m2, and you decide to reach out. During initial emails, calls and site visits, we explore as many details as possible so that we can get to know what you want to achieve and discover other little clues which help to mould the project.

You’ll have:

  1. A site (purchased or owned)

  2. An idea of size

  3. A contemporary home in mind

At this stage, you’ll discover everything you need to know about Facit Homes and how we can deliver value for your dream home.

Step 2: Defining your project

It’s great if you come to us with a list of what you want from your new home. We also have a questionnaire for you to complete so we can better understand what is important. At this stage we present you with an outline of the project details and initial cost estimates in a project proposal. You’ll decide whether to appoint us to design your home.

Step 3: Design

Once appointed to design your home, there are three main steps we follow.

Preparation + brief.

We develop the brief with you and get stuck into the early phase of design. Every conversation is a step in the right direction and discussions will centre on your aspirations, be shaped by visits to your site and result in identifying any potential problem areas that could inflate costs.

Concept design.

The first stage zoning and massing are created with your input, as with every stage of the design. Initial outlines and concepts are based on the information provided before rooms are developed. The idea of how you want spaces to work should become clearer in your mind.

Developed design.

We develop a digital 3D model of your home so that we can interactively analyse the effect of any alterations to design and specification as we go.

Ideally you will love the design and be about 80% happy with the proposal at this point. We can always make minor changes if not.

Sometimes the designs presented bring up a number of issues or just don’t feel quite right for you and so more radical changes are required, but we’ll always get there.

“The design process was very good. The 3D rendering meant that we spent a lot of time discussing the spaces and how they would fit our lifestyle, making decisions early on.”

Step 4: Cost plan and planning application

Decisions made and a design agreed, cost estimates become a cost plan and our work on the planning application can get underway. Delivering the cost plan before your planning application is submitted ensures you can afford to build your home once it is approved.

As we design the home with the budget in mind and discuss cost implications along the way, there shouldn’t be any major surprises but if there are, then amendments can still be made.

This is when we calculate an accurate estimate of your project.

NB: Delays.

If there is significant time between your initial estimate and cost plan, or cost plan and starting on site, there could be changes to the prices. All project costs are subject to inflation and material price rises and fixed prices can only start in the construction contract.

Step 5: Construction

Once your planning application has been approved, we prepare for the build of your home. Technical design can start (at risk) during the planning application if we’re confident of success.

After technical design is complete, we organise demolition works (if necessary), start the groundworks to create a footprint and get going on the foundations. Our Mobile Production Facility is then transported to your site, and we manufacture your home from FSC plywood on site, assembling the components and building your high performance, low carbon Facit Chassis™.

Timber home in construction.
A Facit Chassis™ in construction

How much will it cost?

In a Facit Homes project, you'll discover how much your design will cost to build before your planning application is submitted.

Our construction costs are £2,750 per m2 and we calculate architectural fees as a percentage of the total build cost. The fees vary from 12 – 17% depending on the project size and complexity and cover the full range of architectural design services.

More information on our turnkey service and fixed price construction contracts can be found on our price page:

If you have a site and you’d like to design and build your home with us, contact the team in the studio on 020 3034 0720 or

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