If you’re in the market for a new home or you have unused land, you may be considering building your own house. To build your own house is a monumental achievement and thanks to the advancement of building today, there are a few options to get started. There are some things to take into consideration before deciding to build your own house, though.
While building your own house may be the goal, you will still need to work closely with professionals to get the job done, both for the safety of yourself and family and to ensure the building and site are structurally sound. For instance, unless you have the appropriate certifications and training, you will need an electrician and plumber when the time comes.
You can maintain involvement in the process as much as possible by acting as your own general contractor. Experienced general contractors can be costly, but they also have access to the most reliable subcontractors and can get work done quickly and efficiently. It can be overwhelming with no experience, but with the proper research and resources, you can save money by acting as your own general contractor instead of hiring one.
Be sure to rent a dumpster to make site cleanup easier!
Knowing your available budget is essential to building your own house. If you are going to complete the jobs you are able without the assistance of a crew, you can save money. It’s important to know your limits and hire the help that’s needed for certain jobs. Take into consideration each aspect of the building process, such as carpentry, foundation, electrical and plumbing, and inspection costs when figuring your budget.
Depending on the land you have available, it may make the job easier or more difficult. Prepare the land by clearing it of trees, brush, and other debris that would be in the way. You will likely need a labor crew to clear the site down to ground level. If the land needs modified for drainage, a contractor with digging equipment and machinery will be needed. You’ll want to ensure proper surveying of the land and the building site, so you will need a surveyor crew to complete your measurements and markings. To get temporary power to the building site, you can hire an electrician who will place a temporary electrical panel on a nearby pole. Once your land is properly prepared, you’re ready to start the building process.
Foundation When You Build Your Own House
A good home begins with a solid foundation. This is where you will need excavation crews and workers who specialized in foundations. This job requires knowledge and special skills. As such, it’s probably best left to the pros. Contractors will dig the area for footings to be inspected. Once the dimensions are confirmed, the contractor will pour the concrete foundation including vertical walls. The entire foundation is waterproofed to ensure it sets properly and does not get damaged.
Slab When You Build Your Own House
In slab foundations, you can call in a plumber and electrician to run some pipes and conduits before the concrete slab is poured. After preparing the site with gravel, foam board, and wire mesh, a subcontractor will pour the cement slab. This is often done utilizing cement trucks.
Now is the time to call the carpentry crew. Installing the framework is also a job you can get involved in with guidance from the crew. You will need to order the lumber, nails, adhesives, and other materials required based on your house plan. The carpentry crew will build the skeleton of the house, leaving spaces for windows, doors, and skylights as directed by the blueprints you’ve chosen. Framing is done by erecting wood planks and securing them to form the most basic layer of your new home. The same carpentry crew may install your windows and doors, which is another step you can play a part in.
Once the framework, windows, and doors are completed, electricians and plumbers can come in.
Finished siding is placed over weather resistant sheaths to protect your home. When all of this is completed, a roofing team will be able to place shingles or other roofing materials you’ve chosen.
Roofing When You Build Your Own House
When you build your own house, the roof may be the most important thing to consider. After all, it’s protecting you and your family from the elements. This is another step that you may want to call in the pros. Do a quick google search for “roofing company near me“. From there, choose a professional with great reviews.
However, if you are inclined to do it yourself, make sure to do it carefully. At this point, the framing is done. First, you will need to lay plywood to cover the entirety of the roof. Secondly, lay roofing felt to cover all of the plywood. Roofing felt is a layer of tar paper installed beneath the shingles to provide a backup waterproof membrane in case of leakage. Thirdly, lay your shingles. Quick tip–shingles should not line up in straight rows. They need to stagger similar to subway tile or bricks.
The basic groundwork for electric and plumbing is called a rough-in. Electricians come in to place circuits while plumbers lay pipes. They will need to return later to complete the job. An HVAC specialist can also be utilized at this point for duct work within the home.
Inspections are essential after rough-in work is completed. A general contractor will have someone on hand when the time comes to complete inspections, but if you are acting as your own general contractor, hiring someone for inspection falls completely on you.
One of the less labor intensive jobs required when building your own house is installing insulation. This job can be performed by the carpentry crew or another specialist labor force, but most homeowners opt to do the job themselves to save money and get more involved with their project.
Drywall When You Build Your Own House
This is another job you can do yourself if you have the know-how and proper tools. Throughout the home, drywall is hung, and ceiling surfaces are installed. Once the drywall is taped, secured with compound, and sanded, you can use special spraying equipment to prime the walls and ceiling.
Cabinets are often installed once the drywall and ceilings are primed. You can also install trim at this point. Once finished, paint the walls. This is another job most homeowners take on themselves, since it’s a simple one. Install countertops, either by yourself or with the help of the carpentry crew or cabinet specialists.
Now is the time to call the electrician and plumber to finish their job. Since there are codes involved here, it is best for a specialist to install the electrical and plumbing.
Depending on the type of flooring you choose, you can install it yourself. Some types of flooring may require skilled work, which is where a flooring subcontractor would come in.
Once you’ve completed your flooring, it’s time to clean up. While you can hire companies to clean up the building site, it’s more cost effective and rewarding to do it yourself.
Don’t forget, the driveway needs paved. Additionally, you may want to consider hiring a professional for your landscape. Landscaping is labor intensive but something you could also do yourself to add a personal touch to your new home.
Local permitting agencies perform the final inspections. You complete a walk-through if you’re acting as the general contractor. Otherwise, a hired general contractor will complete their walk-through at this point.
Building your own house can be an exciting, but stressful experience. Ensuring you have the proper tools, knowledge, resources, and crews available can make the process easier for everyone involved. Following your budget is crucial, since building your own house can be costly. By completing easier jobs yourself, you can save money and be on your way to your dream house in no time.
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