Buying a new house is incredibly expensive these days. It seems like the average home value has slowly risen over the past couple of decades, and now the price of property is at an all-time high. In fact, in some towns and cities, it is so high that many families are being priced out of the property market. As a result, more families are living in rented accommodation and trying desperately to squirrel away the pennies to try and come up with a sizeable deposit that they can put on their first property.
So, there’s no wonder that many people are trying to afford their very first home. Thankfully, the government has designed a few different schemes to help make new homes more affordable, such as part ownership schemes. However, some families have given up on ever buying a house. Instead, they are now considering building their own. Self-build projects are often considered a lot cheaper than buying a home outright, and it’s often easier to get more for your money. But that doesn’t mean that you should launch straight into your own self-build project without thinking about it. You need to weigh up whether or not it is right for you. Here are a few pointers that can help you decide.
Can You Afford It?
First of all, and probably most importantly, you need to figure out whether or not you can actually afford to start a self-build project. Sure, they can often be quite a bit cheaper than buying a new home, but that doesn’t make them totally cheap. After all, a property is going to be quite pricey whether you buy or build. When you build, you could probably knock about $10,000 off what you would expect to spend if you buy. That’s about it. So, in most cases, a self-build project will still cost you in excess of $100,000. One of the best things about building your home, though, is that you don’t have to spend all of your cash at once. You usually just need to pay for various building and design jobs as and when they are done. As this will help you spread out your payments, you could find it is easier to afford as you don’t need to struggle to find a lump sum all at once.
Find The Best Plot Of Land
If you have worked out that you can indeed afford to self-build, then it’s time to look for the best plot of land. It is crucial that you research all of the available plots in the area that you want to build on. The types of soil in each plot could be different, and that could have an effect on the type of house you are able to build on it. Not only that, though, but you want to make sure that the land is for sale at a reasonable price and that it won’t throw up any issues when you are trying to apply for planning permission to build on it. For example, some plots that are quite far back from the main road might struggle to gain planning permission as the building office could think that there will be accessibility issues for a property on the plot.
To help you find the best plot of land for your project, these are some of the best ways you can begin your search.
- Land Agents – Land agents are just like real estate agents, except they only deal with plots of land. It’s not just land for building that they will deal with – they sometimes work with farmers and other landowners to help with the sale and purchase of agricultural land as well. More often than not, land agents help large construction companies buy huge plots for new housing estates. It’s still worth individuals contacting their local land agent, as they should also be aware of smaller plots that are currently available.
- Estate Agents – It’s also worth having a chat with local estate agents about any plots of land that they might be selling. Even though real estate agents will primarily work with property, some still help landowners buy and sell land too.
- Internet Sites – There are also a few new internet sites that focus on selling plots of land. These include sites like Perfect Plot and Building Plot. Each one has a large database of plots of land that are currently for sale around the country. You just need to filter the search criteria to see if there are any that match your requirements.
- Your Own Search – If you want a plot of land in your current neighborhood, then you might want to just have a drive around one day and see if you notice any for-sale signs posted in the corners of fields. Some landowners prefer to sell their land this way rather than having to go through a land or estate agent and pay their high fees.
Finding The Experts
For some people, finding the right plot of land can be quite a long process, and it can take some people over a year until they finally find their ideal plot of land. Once you have, though, there is still quite a bit that you need to organize before you can finally start building. Firstly, you need the following professional help.
- Builders – There is no way you will be able to carry out your self-build project without the help of some professional builders. But don’t just hire the first firm that you find. It’s a good idea to call a few different ones so that you can get quotes for your project. That way, you can compare prices and see who can offer you the work at the best possible price. Not only that, though, but take a look to see if you can see any online reviews of their work. It’s even a good idea to ask the building firm for their portfolio. You can then see examples of their work and see if it matches what you want from your new home.
- An Architect – Without an architect, you won’t be able to draw up any designs of blueprints for your home. Again, as with choosing a builder, it’s a good idea to get some recommendations and quotes to see which is the best firm for you. Some architects offer a wide range of services, so it’s also worth trying to find one that offers all of the various services that you will require for your own building project. For instance, if you choose Cochran, you will benefit from their geotechnology and land surveying services. So, before you start to look for an architect, consider everything you need from a firm.
- A Project Manager – There are some people who choose to manage their own self-build projects. Usually, these are people who have some experience of building either through their work or personal interest. However, if you don’t have any previous experience, then it is often advised to hire a project manager. Looking after this kind of project needs some extremely good time-management and communication skills. If you know that you are particularly weak in these areas, it’s best to hire someone who can then liaise effectively with all the different people working on the build. Some building firms will bring their own project manager, which will save you quite a bit of money.
Chaddy is making moves, 2 weeks for brickwork with decent weather and this baby can really start to look like home again. A lot a questions as to why we built this on site rather then prefab panels. 1 – Quite honestly I think we are better and quicker are making the panels. 2 – with so much steel work involved in the frame it’s so hard to get all the fabrication teams to work together and take accountability for the combined job, So I’ll just take that responsibility rather then paying others to do a substandard service, Also it’s a Damm nice job to do, who wouldn’t want to work in the sun and build a timber house. It doesn’t really get any better then that imo. Pictures taken with a @djiglobal air #drone #djimavicair #keeponbuilding #designandbuild #design #build #builder #timberframing #timberframe #carpentry #carpentrylife #lumber #timber #tradesman #buildersofig #buildersofinsta #buildersofinstagram
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Kits Are Available For Inexperienced Builders
If you have no experience of building at all, the whole prospect of building your own home can be very daunting indeed. Thankfully, there are some firms out there who aim to make it easier for first-time home builders. These companies design home kits that can easily be assembled by builders. The homes are designed by the company, who then ship out the kit to you. All the builders need to do is assemble your home. This is a lot quicker than a traditional self-build project and is being used by more and more families who are interested in a cheaper way to build a new home.
Delays Are To Be Expected
One reason why some families choose not to build their own home is that they don’t have much free time in their schedule to dedicate to it. Building your own home can end up being very time-consuming indeed, especially if any issues cause delays. And, believe me, delays are extremely common. You should expect to be set back anywhere from one week to a year depending on the extent of the issues that are caused. So, if you really can’t afford to have your completion date pushed further and further back, it could be best for you to keep on trying to buy somewhere.
As you can see then, there is so much that you need to take into consideration when you are thinking about building your own home. Sure, it could work out quite a bit cheaper than buying a new home, but are you prepared to take into account all of the other stress and responsibilities that come with it?