How to Find The Cheapest Way to Build a House

“Cheap” is not usually the word we like to hear about building our homes. But as penny hoarders, we know that there are ways to build a house and save money at the same time.

And the real estate market is going crazy for existing homes, now is the time to consider building your own home instead of buying one.

You seem to have picked up a lot of points from these modern home buildings and TV rearrangement shows. Lots of ideas too. But remember, every extra idea costs money. Think for a moment – do you really need to fill your kitchen utensils or do you need a wooden floor in every room again?

Let’s see how you can use planning and find the cheapest way to build a house and still get what you want.

Make a holistic plan to build a house.

A plan and a budget are not the same thing, but a plan includes a budget, and much more. The construction of the house should start from this place.

Be honest with yourself during this stage National Association of Home Builders.

“I can work for any budget, but you have to be honest about your money,” Rothroff said.

Consider all aspects of your construction. Your plan should include the following:

  • the amount: How much do you plan to spend on everything for the house? Where do you get this money – savings, construction loans, elsewhere? Rothroff recommends a 10% increase in your budget.
  • Earth: Do you have any properties in mind? What are the zoning requirements and regulations? Does it need digging, reshaping or other improvements?
  • Permission: What licenses do you need and how long does it take to get them? Every city and municipality has different needs, and most of them spend money. Also, understand the inspection process and what needs to happen and when. Lack of inspection can cause you to tear up things you have already completed, increasing your costs.
  • the people: Think about who will be involved in the construction. Consider the architect to plan, the contractor who will oversee everything, the subcontractor who will do the work, and everyone involved in making construction decisions.
  • Home run costs: As you think about the square footage and other details of your new home, don’t forget to think about the cost of maintaining it. Size matters. Property taxes, utilities, maintenance, insurance and more. It all needs to be part of your home building plan.
  • timeline: How long will it take to build your home and where will you live in the meantime? According to US Census Bureau, Fifty percent of homes built in 2020 took four to six months, and another 18 percent took seven to nine months. Payment for both construction and living space may increase.
  • Mandatory vs. Knights to Hughes: What do you really need at home? How many bedrooms and bathrooms are there? What additional features do you want and what do you really need?

Many homebuilders will handle the land, permits, materials and people (including contractors and subcontractors) so you don’t have to think about all these things yourself. One of these architects is Cristo Holmes of Cincinnati, where Michelle Fletcher is a new home sales consultant.

Experience has given Fletcher some insight into the home-building process. For example: If you plan to add later, such as a ready-made basement, laundry room or wet bar, it is best to include rough in your initial construction.

“If you have to hammer the floor jack and you haven’t plumbed for it, adding it to the bathroom will be a lot more expensive,” says Fletcher.

General contractor or a general contractor?

A typical contractor is someone who will be responsible for overseeing the construction of your home on a daily basis. They are usually the ones who order the content, subcontract with the merchants, oversee the quality of everyone’s work, and much more.

To save money on your dream home, you can work as your general contractor. But beware: this may seem like a good way to build on a budget, but it can ultimately cost you more.

Here are some questions to ask yourself before deciding to become a contractor:

  • How much experience do you have in construction and project management?
  • How much time can you spend on the construction site?
  • How well do you understand licenses and the house building process?
  • Do you have a lot of relationships with vendors and subcontractors?

Experienced contractors often know how to expect cost increases and how to build them within their budget. They know where to save, where to spend and how to find subcontractors who can get the job done.

“Good luck,” says Fletcher about going it alone. She says professional contractors have relationships with relatives and the power to buy. “If you go to it yourself, you will pay more for everything and it will probably take years to build a house.”

Simplify your dream house design.

We all have ideas about what our perfect home would look like, but if you want to build on a budget, you can’t have it all. Simplifying your new home design can help.

  • Make a box: The more rectangular the design, the cheaper it is to make. A one-story farmhouse on a simple roofed concrete slab is the cheapest form for a home. Collisions and interesting angles add to the cost. You can always add landscape elements later to create some restraining appeal.
  • Build out instead: Land is expensive, so adding a story can be cheaper than getting more land. Construction means small foundation and small roof.
  • Consider roof design: Different roof designs and materials have a dramatic effect on price. The cheapest is to build a flat roof, followed by a gabled roof and then a mansard design. Types of roof coverings, such as shingles or tiles, also affect the price. Bitcoin is not the only consideration Be sure to check building codes and insurance rates in your area. Some roof designs can significantly reduce insurance costs, which can save you money in the long run.
  • Group water area: Placing bathrooms, kitchens, laundry and other places with water reduces the plumbing material you will need. Rothroff reminds people to plan where things like drowning will go and then stick to that plan. This may involve making changes after the actual building has started.
  • Do not customize: Avoiding available and standard items such as pre-fabricated cabinets and bathroom vents can save a lot of money. Even with windows. Custom details are much more expensive than standard sizes.

Don’t get so caught up in the dream that you lose track of the value of all your “desires.”

As part of your design process, Rutroff recommends collecting your eye-catching images. “The more you know what you like and don’t like, the better the process will be, and the more money you will save.”

A man lays a new wooden floor.
Getty Images

Prefer structured items.

Building with the basics with plans to upgrade things can save you some money as you end up building later.

Some insider tips:

  • Exclude expensive fixtures and finishes: Rutheroff says getting stuck in brand names or thinking you need the best of everything. Finding something you like and then asking your designer or contractor if it is a less expensive alternative can save some serious money. Below the road, you can always add upgrades, but you may be surprised that you don’t really remember them.
  • Paint uniform: Fletcher advises customers that in the beginning it is cheaper to paint the whole house in one color then make some DIY custom.
  • Fight trends: Some of the innovative things we see in home improvement shows are desires rather than needs. Things like pot filling and giant soccer tubs can be attractive but not necessarily worth it.

“If we are on a budget, you will discuss how often you will use this (item),” Rutroff said. “Maybe you have a few more square feet or a little bigger closet in the adjoining bedroom. If we take this tub out, I can take that square footage and use it in a closet that you use every day. Are going to

A designer or contractor can help you decide when to go for interior design and when to save.

Rutheroff says the floor is a place where it would be nice to spend a little.

“In my own house, we spent money to make engineered wood because we have a big dog,” he says. I’m glad we spent that money there.

Another potential place to explode, they say, is the kitchen counter, because you see and touch them every day.

He suggests there could be a device saving area. “Choose carefully how you use them. Do you really need (advanced) limits?

Understand the value of building materials.

There are many ways to build a house and many materials that you can use during the house building process. Choosing the right materials can reduce costs.

Home builders like Cristo have already crunched numbers for you. Here are some examples of content that can save dollars.

  • Framing: Wood framing can be less expensive than concrete blocks, but in some places blocks can be cheaper to insure. Prefabricated wall panels that are custom made and shipped to the factory can reduce both framing and labor costs. The same is true of precast concrete which is poured into molds, cured indoors and then sent to a construction site. It’s usually cheaper to put on site, and doesn’t depend on the weather.
  • Consider energy efficiency: Some upgrades may cost more than before, but will save money in the future. These are things like insulation, high performance windows, and energy efficient appliances. Think of these things as investments, not just one-time purchases.
  • Exterior items: Vinyl siding is usually cheaper than concrete or brick. A stone garment or stone sheet, which uses only a thin layer of stone, is more cost effective than the use of whole stones.
  • Walls: Instead of drywall, you can consider using concrete sheets, a mixture of concrete and cellulose fibers that are pressed into the boards. Also, look for corrugated metal or bamboo.

It is important to know what is allowed and what is not. In many places, municipalities and building codes limit what content you can and cannot use.

Also, look for discounts and tax savings on some content. They cost more than before, but you benefit later.

Home building companies like Cristo have already made a lot of money. They have relationships with suppliers and others who will save you money on volume discounts.

They also often have design options and packages, many of which combine cost-saving methods. Reducing floor plans and types of finishes can also help you find a cheaper way to build a home.

Avoid these two house building mistakes.

Whether you’re on your own or working with a builder, it’s easy to make mistakes when you build a house.

Stop error # 1: Too many changes.

It doesn’t matter how much you plan, things will change along the way and you will make mistakes. It’s part of working on a bigger project like building a house. But, Ruth Huff warned, it’s important that you don’t re-evaluate every decision.

The decisions you make when building a home may seem overwhelming, but making changes can be slow and costly.

Fraud Mistake # 2: Too Much.

Make sure your home is within the boundaries of others around you. “People are more speculative,” Fletcher said.

It may be the most expensive home in your neighborhood because you have chosen expensive finishes and customized lighting but, “unfortunately, the diagnostician does not pay too much for these items.”

It is also important to keep an eye on the reward. This is your home and in the end, it will be filled to your liking, while hoping to save money.

Fletcher has advice for homebuilders who are worried about “being the best”.

“Comes with the best perspective,” she says. “You have to step back and say, ‘Is this what you really need?’ As long as it fits your budget, it’s okay.

Tiffany Sherman is a Florida-based freelance reporter with over 25 years of experience writing about finance, health, travel and other topics.