How To Connect Utilities for Your Self Build Plot

When planning your self build its important to consider which utilities you need. Research your services in advance, to understand the availability for your plot. If some services are not easily accessible, they could have an impact on your budget.

Think about how your house will function. For example, if you need gas for central heating or if you prefer to cook with gas make sure there is a supply nearby. If gas isn’t easily accessed, it could be costly to connect to the mains.

Always make sure you do a thorough plot evaluation, including which utilities are available. If you have to access services over someone else’s land it may not be an ideal plot for self-building.
Some plots will be easier to connect to than others. For example you may be building on a plot that was originally part of an existing property or garden. This connection should be fairly simple. However, it’s worth making sure this is negotiated into the terms when the land is purchased.

You will also need to think about connecting to other services. Including water, drainage, telephone and broadband. Investigating your options in the early stages will be beneficial in the long-term.

Self Build Utilities

When to Get Connected

Once you have planning permission for your plot, you can start to organise your services. Connecting to water, electricity and drainage will be a vital element to your build. Having these in place at an early stage will help with the smooth running of the site. 

How to Get Connected to Utilities and Services

To get connected to your utilities you should contact your regional network provider. Each region usually has a different energy network operator. Which can be found on the national websites. These network providers organise the infrastructure to get services to your property. They are not usually the supplier, as this will be provided by another company. 

Most energy network operators will need you to complete an application form. They will then send you a quote, and a plan of the work they need to carry out. Once everything has been agreed, you will need to allow at least 6 weeks before work can commence. Which could be extended if roads need to be dug up and notice given. Many network providers have a ‘dial before you dig’ service. Which provides detailed locations of where underground pipes and cables lie. The National Grid also offer free pipeline safety advice. Which you can access before work starts onsite.

To get the project moving many self-builders will organise temporary services. As you will need electricity for tools and equipment, plus a water supply. You can learn more about these in our Self Build Academy workshops.
Our advice when researching your utility connections is:
  • Complete a thorough plot evaluation. Make sure you know what utilities are available and how easily they are accessed.
  • Speak with your network providers in advance and get detailed quotes and availability. Remember to keep your records in order, to avoid any future disputes
  • Plan in advance. Do you need to prepare any work to help the connection run smoothly? Finding out in advance will help with any delays, and could save you money if the work can be done yourself!
  • Don’t forget to build the utility connection element into your project plan. If you don’t have the correct facilities onsite, trades people may not be able to work.