How to reduce the cost of building your own home

12 May 2016
 Categories: , Blog

Whilst it's relatively easy to find a house that meets your basic needs, it's very rare to come across one which is designed exactly the way you want it to be in every respect. This is why so many people are now choosing to build their own homes; doing so enables them to create a property which is tailored precisely to their individual lifestyles and personal tastes. However, there are a ton of expenses associated with this type of construction project, and it's very easy to spend far more than you originally intended to. Fortunately, there are a number of things you can do to keep costs down.

Look for unconventional plots

Plots of land can be outrageously expensive. One way to reduce this expense is to be a bit more flexible in terms of what kind of land you are willing to buy. Sites which have previously been used for commercial purposes can often be purchased at a very attractive price.

Provided you can obtain planning permission and are willing to do a bit more preparatory clearing work before you begin construction, it could be the perfect low-cost solution. Look out for disused car parks, old warehouses and shutdown shops. If you spot a site with a suitable price-tag, make some enquiries with your local authority about using it for residential purposes.

Be willing to pitch in

Hiring labourers can be very expensive. Whilst it's highly unlikely that you'll be able to entirely eliminate this expense - at least a few skilled workers are usually required for construction projects - you can cut down on costs in this area if you are willing to roll up your sleeves and do some of the basic manual labour yourself.

For instance, if you've purchased an overgrown plot covered in weeds and bushes, then you can save quite a bit of money by clearing this vegetation away without the assistance of hired hands. If there are a lot of jobs of this nature to be done, it might be a good idea to enlist the help of some friends and family to tackle the projects. 

It is, however, important to recognise when you need an expert. Do not attempt to undertake tasks such as fitting water mains pipes or installing the house's electricity supply on your own. It's always best to leave these kinds of jobs to plumbers and electricians who have the expertise needed to carry out this work safely and efficiently.

Opt for a prefabricated home

Prefabricated homes are, as their name implies, ones that are made off-site and transported to your land after they are built. Modular homes are one example of this; these consist of prebuilt sections (or 'modules') that are made in a factory and then joined together on the plot of land for which they are designed. They have become very popular in recent years, not only because of how quickly they can be made, but also because they are usually very affordable. These homes can often be up to 20% cheaper than traditionally-built houses. As such, if you're on a tight budget, it may be worth exploring the idea of purchasing this type of house, while still seeking to create the custom home of your dreams.