How to lower building costs

Building a home can get you in a financial mess if you do not know how to manage your costs. Here are tips to help you lower building costs.

1.) Set your budget
Decide on the amount of money you want to spend on your home project. Be realistic and set a figure that you are comfortable spending on materials. Create your budget around that figure.

Make a list of all the materials you will need for the home building project. Compare prices with various suppliers and ask for referrals on suppliers who offer discounts.

However, do not spend all the money on materials. Set aside some amount for unexpected delays due to weather, builder performance and delivery difficulties.

2.) Stick to the schedule
Construction delays can push you over budget, and if your project is on bank financing it may go beyond the financing draw period. This may see the bank taking stern action on your project. You can stick to the schedule by motivating your builder to get the work done without delay, while staying on top of every aspect of the project.

3.) DIY project management and construction
Do-it-yourself (DIY) project management allows you to oversee the entire home building project from ground up. It also allows you to schedule your project in phases.

By being your own project manager, you will have an upper hand in purchasing construction materials and supplies. In addition, you may also want to stop your builder from doing some work that you can do yourself, for example cleaning up and landscaping.

If your project management skills are inadequate, and still you want to take charge on the project, you can hire a supervisor or manager on a part-time basis.

4.) Get liability insurance
Though liability insurance may cost you more, it will cover the costs of your liability, just in case a builder gets injured on-site or if a passer-by gets injured for some reason.

5.) Keep to the basics
You should keep your home project down to the basics – floor, walls, rooms, and roof. You can lower building costs by exchanging fancy building materials with regular materials that are just as functional. Think vinyl tiles instead of ceramic tiles, straight stairways instead of spiral staircase, ordinary glass panes instead of glass-stained windows.

6. (Bonus tip) – Do it right first time round
It is not a secret that huge savings can come from work that is done right the first time around. Ensure a third-party inspects your home before you pay your builder.

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