Grand Designs presenter seeks £1.5m for antidote to 'homogeneous' housing

Kevin McCloud's company HAB will use the money to design 1,000 eco-friendly, 'self-build' homes a year until 2018.

Designer and TV presenter Kevin McCloud is looking to raise £1.5m from the public to help build customised homes that his company says will be the antidote to "bland homogeneous" suburbia. McCloud's company Happiness Architecture Beauty (HAB), will use the money to design 1,000 eco-friendly, "self-build" homes a year until 2018. It forecasts profits of £10m.

Fewer than one in 10 UK homes are designed to their owner's specifications, a lower level than anywhere else in western Europe and the US, but the presenter of Channel 4's Grand Designs insisted that a self-build "revolution" was under way. Homes designed by HAB would be green, affordable – "in the context of UK house prices" – with social values. "Our responsibility as developer on the site of self-build will always be to put in the vegetable gardens, the car club, the shared social spaces, sustainable drainage and the edible hedgerows, orchards and suchlike."

Investors who join the crowd-funding scheme can expect dividends of at least 5% by the end of 2016 and would be entitled to a 5% discount off the price of a HAB home, according to its business plan.

Read the full story here: http://www.guardian.co.uk/business/2013/jun/30/grand-designs-presenter-antidote-homogenous-housing

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