Ways to Save On Building

How to save money when constructing a new house? If you want to build a house quickly and want it to be affordable enough to pay off in five to six years, without taking a long-term mortgage the cost saving strategies below might help. Since building a home is expensive and the cost of interior finish is also high the key to success is keeping your budget as low as possible to be able to purchase furniture, appliances, lights, and plumbing fixtures. This article is based on experience of a family that managed to renovate a horse barn that was already on the property into a 900-square foot home for just $72,000, plus an extra $12,000 spent on interior decor, furnishings, appliances, and fixtures.

You won't find any money-saving "tricks" here, but sound decisions grounded on budgeting and long-term financial goals. The primary advice is to keep your home under-budget and avoid projects that will make you go over-budget. So if you decided to keep the cost of your home build as low as possible, the tips below will help manage your budget wisely.

Get Several Bids and Select a Contractor Wisely

Don't hire the first contractor you find but search for multiple bids to ensure you're getting the best deal. After you narrowed down the list of contractors you are willing to hire check their references. You may ask the contractor to give you names of customers they worked for. Of course, contractors will provide you with their best references, so it would be a good idea to get several names on your own by asking those customers. This way you will get a more objective picture of the person you plan to hire.

Keep in mind that other factors apart from the price of the home can cost you money as well. If contractors work slowly or manage subcontractors poorly, it will cost you a great deal to correct mistakes or to pay for the home you are currently living in while construction drags on. The objective is to find a reliable and affordable contractor who works well and meets the time schedule.

Elect for a Smaller, Open Footprint

The bigger the home being built, the more money it is going to cost you. So you can save lots of money by having a smaller house but make sure you zero in the things that are really important for you.

An open floor plan is a great way to do this as you will get multifunctional space that can be used in various ways [1]. For example, a kitchen with a large island that opens up to the living room can be used as a living, dining, and a place to work. Plus, with the open plan you will never feel cramped even in a quite small house. Consider keeping your construction simple so you could cut costs on interior walls, doors, hallways, etc. So ask yourself how much room you actually need and then think how you can effectively use the space in your house.

Choose a Forgiving Aesthetic

If you opt for "industrial" or "rustic" aesthetic you can save a great deal of your hard earned money [2]. In addition, you can even leave some projects unfinished and it will still look purposeful. When combined with the other features of your home, the style you get will come together as "rustic industrial".

Do the Work Yourself

You can save by doing some work yourself. Of course, it is time consuming and requires a great deal of hard work but the money saved worth the effort. It doesn't mean that you should do all the work yourself. When it comes to things that are related to your safety, such as running wire or laying pipes, you had better delegate the job to the experienced professionals.

Source Materials When Possible

Discuss with your contractor the opportunity of sourcing your own materials. Very often, the contractor and subcontractors can take advantage of wholesale prices on construction materials, but in some cases you can find a better deal yourself.

In general, we wouldn't recommend purchasing pre-owned materials, but it depends on what you need. For example, it makes sense to purchase a new water heater or air conditioner at Best Buy or Home Depot, but get decent quality second-hand flooring or light fixtures at eBay.

Know When to Splurge

Sometimes you can stray from your initial plan and consequently budget for an upgrade that will add a great deal of comfort and convenience to your new home. When any change or upgrade is offered to you, weigh all pros and cons, as well as long-term benefits of increasing your budget.

Salvage Materials for Reuse

In other words use whatever you can, however you can. During the construction you will get some material waste that can be reused. Just be creative and don't throw away things you can use later. Of course, it doesn't mean that you should keep everything, but discarding good materials is not wise.

Final Word

When building your home, be frugal, but don't go overboard. Remember that you are going to live in the house you construct. Home is the place where you should feel comfortable and enjoy staying at. During the construction process, it's important to stick to your budget, but don't let the money issue have a negative impact on your long-term quality of life.

References
[1]: Houzz Open Floor Plan Ideas
[2]: Rustic-industrial design achieves aesthetic balance