Time is right for Herefordshire farmers to source sites for development

Published January 21st, 2014

With the residential property market turning the corner now could be a good time for property owners to release and source sites for residential development.

“Agents are reporting fewer new properties coming onto their books so we are urging farmers and property owners with potential development sites to get them on the market now,” said chartered surveyor Ben Corbett at Berrys in Herefordshire.

“The residential market is picking up rapidly and developers have seen the signs and are back looking for sites to develop in the future,” he said.

“Some property owners have obtained planning consent in the past but have been sitting on their sites, holding them over until the market picks up.


“The planning permission only lasts for three years before work is started so we are recommending that they sell now while the market is buoyant rather than hang on and have to renew the planning permission.

Herefordshire has a shortage of housing to meet its five-year housing target so there is more scope for property owners to get planning consent for greenfield sites as well as redundant farm buildings, he said.

New build sites are obviously the most desirable but barn conversions are coming back into vogue again.

“Although many barns have already been developed in the county there are still some that have great potential for residential use and with the government looking at relaxing permitted development rights it may become easier to get residential planning consent for these buildings,” Ben said.

Agents at Berrys’ five offices across the Midlands and North West are reporting a lot more enquiries from potential residential buyers and also from property developers looking for sites.

The Royal institution of Chartered Surveyors (RICS) predicts house prices in the UK increasing by eight per cent  over the course of  2014 driven by the acute imbalance between demand and sluggish supply.

“As a diversified practice incorporating surveyors, planners and designers we have all services under one roof meaning that we can easily and quickly process a planning project and we have a high success rate,” Ben explained.

“When it comes to marketing a site we have excellent relationships with local developers who are looking for sites and we have the contacts to do a private deal if this is required.”

“We offer a free land and property appraisal so please contact us so we can help you make the most of your property assets and optimise the market conditions,” Ben added.

For further information or to book a free appraisal contact Ben Corbett at Berrys on 01544 598080 or email

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More about Ben Corbett

BSc (Hons) MSc MRICS
Chartered Surveyor
Tel: 01432 809831
Mobile: 07799 902948

Ben is a member of the Royal Institute of Chartered Surveyors and a registered valuer, he joined Berrys in October 2013. Previously he worked for a large farm management company and for Savills where he qualified as a Chartered Surveyor in 2006.

Ben manages the Hereford office and the growing range of services that the office delivers. He specialises in valuations, rural property consultancy, and rural property and business advice including planning and development consultancy.