Sunday, December 21, 2008

3: Sized Right

One of the reasons I chose Oak Tree Homes to build my house was because they had the ability to work with me on the design and plans for the house. I started with a very simple plan from Tumbleweed Tiny House Company that we enlarged and developed into a house that would fit my lifestyle and location—28'x28' not including the porches as you see it here. While I'm interested in the philosophies and benefits of living in a small house, I learned a few realities of building. 1. The smallest house isn't always the most cost/value efficient. In other words, when you're working with standard materials, you don't want to find yourself with a design that involves a lot of cutting down standard materials (leaving and paying for waste) just to get a smaller structure. 2. Pre-fab houses are not inexpensive yet...unfortunately. I explored a number of pre-fab options but discovered that most of them were priced without the fees for a septic system, well for water, electricity, plumbing...a number of details that are pretty important if you're expecting to do more than camp out temporarily in your house. 3. Those details will be costly line items in your budget. 4. But, once your builder determines a budget, you can go back line by line and explore ways of trimming costs. There are always options. 5. I can't imagine building a house with a builder that I couldn't trust 95%...at the very least. Trust in something like this is everything.

1 comment:

A-M said...

I am learning the hard way. It's the PC items that are killing me.... an extra $20,000 in retaining costs ($7000 in drainage) - totally unexpected and not forewarned about. Despite signing a fixed price contract with our builders, they were very careful to not mention the potential blow outs still possible in the course of the project. I agree - 95% trust - mine's at about 50% at present! Happy Christmas! A-M xx