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Design and Materials

Bespoke self-build homes
Energy efficient, airtight and self-sustaining

Welcome to Design and Materials Self Build Homes. From the design to the build of your new home whether modern masonry construction or SIPS we have all the expertise and experience you need.


house plans. self build home. home build. home plan. house design Design and Materials has an impressive track record of helping individuals just like you to create your dream self build home. With over 40 years experience in the self build home industry we have seen many different developments from building methods such as traditional brick and block, SIPS panels (timber frame) and now our unique PointOne wall system which is designed to future proof your new home (see below for further details).

Our reputation has been built on customer service and traditional build methods (brick and block), as most of our clients understand the advantages that modern masonry construction (as it is now called) provides.

No need for expensive acoustic membranes - solid floors and walls make for a rock solid house and a very quiet and private home as well. Even the first floor is 'solid' (i.e. no irritating creaks) so that all your bedrooms and bathrooms etc can all have solid walls (no noisy hollow partitions!) and hard floor finishes like ceramic tiles. For more information on modern masonry construction click here.

Airtight and Well Insulated

Building Towards 2016 and beyond - Our Future Proof Option

Design & Materials has always prided itself in forward thinking and offering our clients the latest that building technology has to offer. Working towards the new regulations for 2016 we provide a minimum 'U' value for masonry build of 0.17 w/m/C combined with an airtight structure, which guarantees low energy bills in the years ahead.

The cost of energy can only go one way and availability could become a real issue, so if you are looking to future proof your new home you will be interested in building in modern masonry using Passive House Principles. Also from a timing viewpoint, using modern masonry is just as quick for one-off houses, no waiting for pre-manufactured panels to arrive on site, just deliver some bricks and blocks and your new home is underway and you can build even quicker if you opt for our thin bed block system.

We also believe that using solid materials ensures you are building for the future, as there is something reassuring about a solid, warm and quiet house that will stand the test of time and be around for generations.

Fabric First

Where to best spend your money

Renewable energy features such as photovoltaic roof tiles and heat pumps have genuine ECO credentials and have naturally become popular with self-builders. However they have a high capital cost, require maintenance and it's easy to spend more than you need, sometimes for questionable benefits.

Renewable energy should not be dismissed but there is an alternative we believe you should seriously consider. It is simpler and friendlier on your pocket and means investing in the structural fabric of the building and quality of build. A further point worth noting is that Eco features can be retro fitted whereas in built thermal insulation; external walls, floors, roof and glazing is a one-shot option.

Building Towards 2016 and Beyond

Reduced heat loss and increased air tightness

The standards of thermal efficiency laid down in the Building Regulations are due to change again in 2016. Looking to the future we now provide our clients with a minimum 'U' value of 0.17 W/m/C for external walls. This is achieved by incorporating high performance interlocking cavity insulation giving an airtight wall. Other improvements include thermal plasterboard to first floor ceilings and the latest in window technology. The latter features a 'U' value for the double-glazing of 1.2 W/m/C and a unique 'Secure by Design' locking system approved by the Police.

Future Proof Your New Home

Passive House Principles

If you are looking to really cushion yourself against the ever-increasing cost and availability of energy then you may be interested in investing in the Principles of Passive House technology*.

  • External walls 'U' value 0.10 W/m/C
  • Triple glazed windows/patio doors 'U' value 0.80 W/m/C
  • Enhanced high performance ground floor system
  • Enhanced high performance roof insulation
  • Airtight structure
  • High thermal mass
  • Insulated entrance doors
  • Mechanical ventilation and heat recovery system
  • This typically adds around 10% to your build costs but you may consider that a small premium to pay for minimal energy bills and increased comfort. If this is of interest we can calculate the exact figure for you and you can then make an informed decision.

    N.B. This option is available regardless of size of dwelling, architectural style and orientation of your building plot. In other words you don't have to build an ultra-modern design with a south facing rear garden to benefit from Passive House Principles.

    *Footnote: This option should not be confused with 'Passivhaus' which requires certification. Building to 'Passivhaus' standards will add significantly more to your build costs compared to building with Passive House Principles.

    Inspiration for your self build home design

    Be inspired, download a copy of our free brochure which includes inspirational case studies and many example homes. Click on Download Brochure.

    Whatever stage you have reached with your self build home project, call us to find out how we can help you realise your dream to self build your own home.

    Call Freephone 0333 001 5128

    The entire content of this website and all designs and plans by Design & Materials Ltd are subject to Copyright.
    house plans. self build home. home build. home plan. house design