It seems that building your own small home on your own land should be among the inalienable rights in the constitution. At one time it was assumed that people could build a home on land they owned without supervision. Building your own small home is still possible today, but you will need a permit, and you must comply with all the applicable building codes. Other than obtaining a permit, enduring inspections and funding your project you will encounter very few problems, provided you have selected a rural lot that is not part of an organized subdivision.
Building Your Own Small Home Steps: Planning
If you intend to do all the work yourself it is even more vital that you plan out the process. Spend time researching techniques, and materials, and building codes in your area. As you consider house plans, consider how easy your small home would be to add on to. Possibly select a house plan that would allow you to build only a portion of the home now, live in it and add the rest later.
It is possible to build a starter home of between 150 and 500 square-feet for a very reasonable price. Later you can add to the home in small increments. There are many benefits to this strategy, including avoiding a mortgage, and saving money on materials and labor. It is also a much simpler undertaking to build a small home than a large one. Building a small energy efficient starter home also saves on utilities.
By building as you can afford it and doing the work yourself, you can avoid a home loan. This alone will save you more than 100K over the course of a thirty year loan. Remember though that at the very least building inspectors will insist that you hire a licensed electrician and probably a plumber as well. You may also need to hire a crew and rent equipment to pour the footings, and do the framing. If you choose to use structural panels of some type, it may be cheaper in the long run to allow the company to install the shell. Check with manufacturers for details.
• You must have a licensed electrician. It isn’t legal in most states for unlicensed electricians to do wiring.
• Most of the pluming will also need to be done by a pro.
• You will likely need either equipment, labor or both to pour the footings, and lay the foundation.
• You will likely need help to get the trusses on the roof, unless it is a very narrow span. You may have to rent a crane and a crane operator.
• You may need help to do the framing or wall system work, depending on the materials and techniques you use.
Which Construction Methods are Easiest?
• Log homes are simple, but there is some heavy lifting involved.
• Insulated concrete forms are extremely simple and a few dealers offer a short class that will tell you exactly how to do it.
• Putting together a foam core and wire system to be shot with concrete is extremely simple, but a professional should spray the shotcrete.
• Having used shipping containers delivered and placed on your foundation is extremely easy.
Building your own small home on your own rural lot could prove to be quite economical, and make a huge difference in your long term financial outlook. With low utility bills, and no mortgage you will be saving around $1000 a month, which would otherwise go to house payments and utilities. That’s like getting a $12K raise. For more information on building and planning please download our 98 page free book, and enjoy our many articles. It is easy to save a lot of money when building your own small home.