When it comes to building houses, many people are afraid of making mistakes or getting scammed. This makes them fall into the hands of a real estate agent when they’re looking for an existing home. You should know that the home building process varies slightly from country to country and depending on the area where you're planning to build. You can also add accessories in your backyard for added security.
You need to do your research. You can search for information on the web or consult with a construction company specializing in building homes. Get as much advice as possible, but make sure it's reliable and accurate.
If you're just about to start the process of building your own home, then this article will help you understand what's involved and how much money you'll need for the project. Let’s get started!
Act as Your Contractor
When you decide to build your own home, you become the general contractor. A general contractor is a person who organizes everything necessary for building a house, but he doesn't do any manual labor. This way, you become an owner-builder and can save money on each project.
To be your own contractor, you must be in charge of all building plans. You get to design it the way you want, picking everything from colors and appliances to materials such as wood or concrete. On the downside, you won't receive any wholesale prices. On the upside, you'll be ready for anything and won't have to wait on anyone else to start building your house.
Prepare a Detailed Budget and Plan
Before starting to build your new house, make sure you determine all the expenses that may occur during the process. Estimate everything, including building materials, equipment rental, license fees, and salary for construction workers. If you have some experience with the construction of buildings, it will be easier to calculate the estimated costs of building your dream home.
If you have never built a house before, it is better to contact a construction company and ask them for help with cost estimation. Once you know what you can spend or borrow, plan your budget as accurately as possible.
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Locate the Spot for Your House
When choosing a place for your house, you should consider many factors, such as availability of utilities, proximity to schools and shops, etc. When you have already found a suitable building site, make sure it is not occupied or reserved by somebody else before you proceed to build. Make sure you check with your local real estate for desirable locations.
After that, clear the building site of brush and other debris. Make sure the ground is level at least 25 feet around your planned home perimeter. Call in a surveyor to draw for you the property boundaries. For details, read leveling old house floors on our blog!
Prepare the Home Site and Pour Foundation
Before your builder puts a shovel on the ground, make sure the local government approves the design of your house and provides you with the permit. The land surveyor, engineer, and builder can assist you in designing a home.
Then hire an excavator to dig the foundation of your house, choosing from T-shaped, square, or L-shaped foundations depending on the design of your home. After that, make sure that any area of ground is mounded and leveled to the surrounding area with a soil test.
After pouring concrete, give it time to cure, then apply a waterproofing membrane to your foundation walls. If you’re pouring concrete in cold weather, know the process involve so you don’t have a problem with the curing process.
After that, install the drain, sewer, water taps, and any plumbing that should be on the basement floor. Ensure backfills excavated dirt into the hole around your foundation wall. When the curing process is done, make sure your foundation components are inspected and tested before you proceed with your home construction.
Move to Rough Framing
Once you're done with excavation, foundation, and concrete work, move to the second phase of your DIY home construction project, which is rough framing. At this point, you should have already installed the concrete foundation and roof deck using screws instead of nails. Your contractor will check for any dips or sags in nearby areas where your footings are located so that they can be leveled evenly.
Here, floor plans, walls, and roof systems are completed. Proceed to apply sheathing to your exterior walls, windows, and roof, then install exterior doors. Cover your sheathing with a house wrap and shingles. Remember to use a vapor barrier between sheathing and roof sheathing, as instructed by your contractor.
This is the next step in building your own house: interior finishing work. Your priority at this point is insulation, drywall, and electrical work. You should have finished framing all doors and window openings, making sure that no liquid infiltrates your structure. Also, make sure water vapor is kept out.
Cover your insulation with drywall to keep potential moisture out of your house, and install wiring systems for lighting, receptacles, and appliances. Use only fireproof materials in every aspect of your electrical installation; this will prevent short circuits, fires, or injury.
Install Electrical, Rough Plumbing, and Insulation
After you're done with the interior work of your house, it is time to get the electrical system done. You will need an electrician for this part of the construction process since you have already started framing your house to keep moisture out. You'll also need plumbers and HVAC specialists.
Once the shell is complete, install siding and roofing. Electrical and plumbing contractors can also start running pipes and wires through the interior walls, ceilings, and floors. Proceed to install sewer lines, vents, and water supply lines. Install ductwork for heating and air conditioning.
Install landscaping, walkways, patios, decks, garages, porches, handrails, handrails around staircases and sidewalks. Install retaining walls to keep the land in place once it is sloped toward an excavation site. This process usually starts after all plumbing and HVAC. Install HVAC vent pipes in ceilings and floors. Sockets and light fixtures in walls and ceilings, garage doors, exterior lights, and doorbells in the exterior.
Before moving to the next step, make sure plumbing, electrical, rough framing, and mechanical systems are installed in compliance with building codes. Remember that these require three different inspections on the same structure.
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Install the Insulation
Common types of insulation in new homes include:
- Foam mineral wool
- Insulation concrete forms
- Spray form
- Concrete blocks
- Foam board or rigid foam
- Structural insulated panels
Insulation is very important as it is helpful in making a new home more energy-efficient. This makes your home feel more comfortable year-round. Insulation is also very important in helping to keep your heating and cooling costs down. The insulation materials can help protect against heat flow, noise levels will be reduced, and protection against moisture penetration which can cause permanent damage to the walls of the house.
The most common types of insulation used are fiberglass, foam board, and rigid insulation boards. But your builder may use mineral wool insulation which is better for your home. Both fiberglass and mineral wool are installed in between the studs. Then, insulation can be used under the house floor to stop heat loss and noise reduction.
Complete Drywall and Interior Fixtures
Start by hanging the drywall, then tape, sand, and paint the surface. Install the interior fixtures, such as your light fixtures, plumbing access panels, heating vents, and electrical outlets. Complete texturing, then apply a primary coat of paint. Add the trim and baseboard. Finalize by installing exterior finishes.
Drywall is hung and taped for the seams between the boards to make it invisible. Drywall texturing is then applied to complete the process. You then apply the primer coat of paint and the primary and final coats of paint.
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Install the Trim
Interior doors, door casings, moldings, baseboards, and decorative trim will all go up after you paint the textured areas. These materials come ready to install with their caulk and nails, so you cut them to fit and apply caulking where needed.
Your driveways, walkways, and patios are also formed and poured. Your roofs are shingled, and your siding is applied to the exterior of the house.
Paint the Walls and Perform Finish Work
After installing your drywall and priming the wall surfaces, you should be ready to apply the final paint coat. This is something you can do yourself instead of hiring someone to save money.
When painting over a textured surface, you should use a roller fitted with a brush. You first roll on an even coat of primer and then go back and go over it with a full-brush width of paint. Walls and ceilings are either painted or wallpapered, depending on which you choose. Make sure you learn how to choose paint color because this will have a great impact on many other home decors.
The final step in any house is to install light fixtures and faucets. Kitchen and bathroom countertops are then installed with the help of countertop specialists. After countertops, move to kitchen and bathroom cabinets and ensure they're correctly installed. After that, finish the flooring of your entire house. Floor covering to consider include laminate flooring, wood flooring, carpeting, ceramic tile, and luxury vinyl plank.
Finish with Mechanical Trims
After finishing house painting, you're not done yet. You need to install electrical points and switches for light fixtures in the walls. It's also time to install heating units like water heaters, gas or electric furnaces, air conditioning units, or heat pump systems. Get your hot and cold water plumbing installed right, too, since they are an important part of your new home.
Install Mirrors and Shower Doors
Install mirrors, shower doors, and carpet. A deep clean with a professional cleaner will give your home that extra sparkle you'll love. Complete your exterior landscaping by planting grass, plants, and shrubs. You can also install a garden or add some potted plants to give your home that extra zing.
Make sure an official from building codes completes a final inspection and then issues you with a certificate of occupancy. If there are any defects during the inspection, handle them right away. Schedule for a re-inspection to make sure the corrections were made.
Legalize all your home documents and discuss with the lender to fix a reasonable interest rate for you. The faster you can close on your new home, the sooner you can start enjoying it!
Complete your exterior landscaping and finalize your interior design. Include items to make your house feel like a home. These include things such as family photos, fresh flowers, and comfy furniture. Call the disposal company to clean up the debris and rubbish from your old house. Make sure permitted agencies do the inspection. If you're using a general contractor, schedule a final walk-through to ensure that any repairs are done to your satisfaction.
Before you can move into your new house, make sure it's completely clean, inside and out. The last thing you want is for all of your furniture to get dirty during the final stages of construction. If you financed the building of your home through a construction loan, make sure your lender also makes the final inspection before you move in.
FAQS on Building Your Own Home
Is it cheaper to build your own house?
It is cheaper to build your own house if you have the necessary skills and experience needed to do so. However, it is important that you get quotes from several contractors before choosing one to work with.
Can I build my own house?
You can only build your own house if you have the necessary skills and experience for this task. Make sure you do your research well before you get started.
What is the most expensive part of building a house?
The most expensive part of building a house is the land. Building a home on land that cannot be developed for some reason, such as wetlands or floodplains, will also add up your expenses.
Final Thought on Building Your Own House
As you can see, building your own home is not as easy as it may look. It requires a lot of planning, time, and money to see your house become a reality. If you are determined to do this, then start saving up now? If you have all that it takes to build a house, start immediately and enjoy the undeniable allure that comes with a new home.