Hello From Kent
Posted 11 January 2016 - 08:50 PM
Quick email to introduce myself.
Myself and my wife have just taken the plunge and have had an offer accepted on a plot of land in Kent. We are completely new to self build and have no background at all in building so we are off to a good start!
Plot comes with pre approved planning permission based on plans that were drawn up by Pottons so essentially we are looking to engage a builder and get the house built. My brother who is an ex planning officer and qualified architect has reviewed the permission and has told us that Pottons seem to have done a good job, the only "challenge" is going to be a planning condition that a footpath needs to be built before habitation, there are 4 plots in total (of which we have one) so we need to check that we address how the costs are apportioned and that the work is finished based on our timescales so that we do not end up with a built house and not being able to live in it.
Luckily we have a couple of friends who have self built, and one of my oldest friends is a retired builder/master carpenter so we have some good resources to call on for advice and guidance.
Just working our way through "Practical House Building: A Manual for the Self-builder" and "Housebuilder's Bible 11".
I am a Programme Manager by trade, although not in construction, but I am aware of the importance of nailing down scope, the importance of a good detailed plan, contingency and the importance of good expert advice - some of which I hope I will be able to get from here
That is about it, hopefully be back soon for some sage advice.
Posted 11 January 2016 - 09:56 PM
What is the intended method of construction, and to what standard will be your insulation and air tightness be?
Will your build incorporate mvhr / heat pump / solar Pv reinforcement / other renewables etc?
Having a builder from ( please take with a pinch of salt ) 'yesteryear' can be a mixed bag. I still ( at 41 ) get builders who know less than me about current regs / standards / technologies etc staring down their nose at me, shaking their heads and saying "I've done this for 30 years, boyo, and no complaints so far"....... Master carpenter however sounds an excellent ally so hopefully you have a rare gem there who can help you rather than influence you, if you know what I mean .
I knew nothing of Passiv Haus and it's disciplines / achievements until I literally stumbled across this forum, so have a good read of the many threads and blogs and you'll then be able to form your own idea of what to aim for with your new build.
Posted 12 January 2016 - 08:53 AM
Posted 12 January 2016 - 09:14 AM
Take a very, very thorough look at the Potton plans. They tend to design to the very minimum that's acceptable to get through building regs, or have in the past, so you may well find that, if you want a cheap to run, comfortable house, you need to make a fair few changes to the design.
If this is one of the very new near-passive homes that Potton have been experimenting with, then you're probably OK, as I think that Potton have (at long last) realised that they couldn't carry on designing houses that barely met our current very poor standards, so have been making an effort to try and improve things.
Posted 12 January 2016 - 09:23 AM
Posted 12 January 2016 - 12:29 PM
This website is the place to be, plenty of very good advice, ideas and.... a sense of humour :-)
Some of us are building timber frame, hence some recommendations.... You will be encouraged to have a fabric first approach with airtight finish priority (whatever building materials you choose)... Believe me it all makes sense, even if like me, having no idea at the time!
Edited by DH202020, 12 January 2016 - 12:30 PM.