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  • Writer's pictureNFC Homes

What is land assembly?

Updated: Feb 4, 2022

When considering a major construction project, one of the first hurdles is finding sufficient space in the preferred location. Depending on the aims and scope of a project, tracking down a big enough site can be a major problem.

This is where land assembly can help.

So, what does land assembly mean and how does it impact you if you sell land to a developer? This article answers those questions and more, including land valuation issues when there are adjacent plots also on the market and urban development opportunities.

What is land assembly?

When a residential or commercial property developer needs sufficient space for a substantial project, they sometimes find ways to buy multiple adjacent plots in one area, so that they can create sufficient land to make the project viable.

This is essentially what land assembly means - grouping together adjoining plots of land to merge them into one larger plot of land.

Land assembly and selling land

During the process of land assembly, the developer may approach adjoining landowners to see if they are interested in selling their site along with their neighbours. Conversely, a group of owners may be seeking to sell their plot(s) and seek out a developer proactively.

On its own, a plot of land may be too small to viably develop. However, by combining it with other plots of land and making it larger, it’s likely to then become a more attractive prospect. This is perhaps the key advantage of entering a land assembly agreement with other landowners, making it a very worthwhile consideration.

Also, if you are wondering how to value your land, you need to consider land assembly as a possibility. Being part of a much bigger development proposition often increases the individual value of each plot.

Gaining planning permission

Acquiring planning permission can be one of the more frustrating and encumbering procedures when it comes to land development, and this is no exception in the case of land assembly.

If you're interested in learning more about how the planning permission procedure works, you can read our article on the subject: Selling land: What you need to know about planning permission.

By working collaboratively with other landowners, it is often much easier to get planning permission. Such applications are usually viewed more favourably by the Planning Authority than piecemeal projects across separate plots.

The best way to manage land assembly

The concept of land assembly only works if the various landowners involved are willing and well-coordinated. If this is an option you’re considering, you may be wondering about the steps involved in facilitating land assembly agreements.

All involved parties should maintain a transparent and close working relationship. It can be a colossal waste of resources if someone drops out of the project or backs out during the final negotiations to sell the land.

When considering the prospect of land assembly, it's important to seek out professional advice first. If you'd like assistance with the procedure of land assembly, get in touch with us today.

One of the easiest ways to bring forward a Land Assembly site is to work with a highly experienced and competent developer. Developers who have delivered numerous such sites know how best to negotiate with all the individual landowners and any legal and planning issues on the site.

Additionally, an experienced developer will also know how best to put together the correct parcels of land in order to extract the best value. Working with a developer substantially increases the chance that you’ll receive the best possible price, so you won’t have to fret over whether you could have earned more money from the sale.

Lastly, one of the most attractive advantages of working with a developer is that they are responsible for paying all the costs of putting the site together, as well as taking that site through the planning process. This alleviates a great deal of the workload for the seller.

Land assembly for selling land on a smaller scale

The concept of land assembly doesn’t just apply to large-scale development sites and collaborative agreements between landowners. It's also possible to use land assembly to release the value of a relatively small plot, such as a garden. This can allow you to release some extra cash from your home.

If you can form an agreement with your neighbours, the land parcels you assemble could become a far more viable proposition.

For some homeowners, land assembly is a great way to sell an external area and create capital to improve or to move.

Is land assembly common?

The UK’s shortage of affordable housing, and space for new residential developments, means land assembly is becoming more popular, particularly in urban areas.

For instance, there has been heavy investment in researching funding and management issues to create a better land assembly model for London. To solve London’s housing crisis, both incentivising voluntary land assembly and compulsory acquisition of sites are being reviewed.

Councils in the capital are being tasked with creating ‘Designated Land Assembly Zones’, where both of the above measures can be used to free up development space.

How can I become involved?

If you're selling land or developing it within a land assembly collaboration, contact us for a free quote with no obligations. We support construction projects nationwide and provide a wealth of experience and expertise to fruitful construction partnerships.


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