Whether you’re building a new house or an annex, you probably want a stress-free experience (or at least as little stress as possible).
Construction can be difficult; there are so many different people and different deliveries that you need to rely on, and you’d be very fortunate if everything played out exactly the way you anticipated and planned for. Only 1 in 3 projects come within 10% of their original budget prediction, so to ensure you don’t get a nasty surprise you should try to cut costs at all stages.
Here are some tips to get you started.
Save on Labour wherever possible
Sure, you may want to use people that construct for a living, but you can save in labour costs if you help out every now and then.
Perhaps designate some days where you can join the building team or if you’re experienced in DIY know which whole tasks you could do yourself. You need to be realistic with yourself however, as if you do something wrong you may have to pay through the nose to fix your mistakes.
Plumbing is a classic example where the basics are more difficult than they initially seem and when things go wrong, amateur mistakes from can be very expensive.
Pit contractors against each other
The first contractor you speak to will probably seem like they know exactly what to do and exactly how much it’s going to cost.
It may be tempting to go with them and enjoy this security, but you should speak to as many contractors as you have time for (at least three) to get a good idea about the different prices you could pay for.
If you like a particular contractor but they’re a bit more expensive, let them know that other contractors do it for a cheaper price.
Source construction materials yourself
The contractor naturally wants to maximize profits, which is entirely reasonable, but if you want to save costs you should cut out the middle man and source materials yourself.
It doesn’t take much shopping around to even find construction staples like angle brackets at low trade prices. Make sure you discuss this with your contractor before the project starts however, and have a detailed plan about what you’re going to source yourself and for how much. If you trust you’ll be able to wing it as you go along, you may struggle.
Save Money at all times, even after
Your construction will be a very obvious drain of your resources, but also consider what’s going to happen after completion.
You will have to live in the space, and the prices that that involves includes prices for energy and water usage. You should hence make the project as energy and water efficient as possible. You should get an estimate of the energy performance of your property, which is required anyway whenever a property is built, sold or rented.
You should aim for an A rating, which means having great insulation among others. If you’re considering making this property your home, making it energy efficient can ensure a cheaper living situation for many years to come.