Sunday, May 16, 2021
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Dream Home

houseA home is where you live your life, your own place to unwind and revive. Building your own home is a life time dream and once in a life time experience.  It can be compared to the birds building their nests by gathering together smalls twigs and branches of trees. Tremendous effort and thoughtful planning is needed for the same. Most of the people are not aware about how to go about building a house and from where to start. A lot of things needs to be done like estimating costs and time, dealing with architects and contractors, locating and buying land, securing home loans - if the funds are insufficient, selecting building materials, overseeing construction etc.

Know your limits & Budget 

Knowing your limits is essential before you build a house. A house is the biggest savings in a man's life.  So it is important to invest money wisely for building a house. Discuss with your family about the needs. Consider your household, present and future. You should also have a clear idea about your savings for the home and how much you can generate from the loans and other sources. Your needs and your budget should balance out. Friends/relatives who have recently built a house can help you a lot.

Select a good location

The first step to build a house is to find a good location and land. Before you can even begin to look at a plot you must have a clear idea about the style of the home that you are going to build and the facilities. Look at real estate classifieds or talk to agents. If you are putting an advertisement in classifieds, be specific about your requirements for the land to avoid confusion.

The size of the home you require, will have an enormous impact on the nature of the plot you will be looking for. It is best to get the land you are planning to buy, assessed by an expert or engineer. You should also check out the civic amenities like drainage, sewerage, garbage disposal systems, roads and transport links, proximity to market, post offices, schools,  medical facilities, power availability and even atmospheric pollution. The access to the site is important as it can save a lot of money, if the building materials could be brought directly to the plot.  It is advisable to look for less expensive land further away from the city centre to reduce land cost. Check whether the land is affected by any road widening scheme or any specific reservations for public amenities.

Planning the design

houseYou need to determine exactly what you need and want in your new home. Consider the major elements you would like in your new home, the style, the number of floors, the total area, the number of bedrooms and baths, size of the sitting room, car porch, kitchen etc. You probably have a design in your mind. Discuss with your family and ask for their opinion.  You can discuss with the friends/ relatives who have recently build a house about their experience and the cost they incurred. From that you could get an idea whether your plan will fit your budget.  It is a good idea to analyze the positive and negative features of the house you lived in before.  You will also want to choose a plan that suits the area in which you're planning to build. 

Selecting Architect /Engineers

A good architect can build your dream home within your budget. It is important to find a good architect when you start planning seriously to build a house. A good architect doesn't mean, a busy person who have lots of offices and built so many houses nearby your area. Instead of that you have to find out the one who is able to and has the time to, listen to your dreams and wishes about your home, make you understand the errors in your design, consider your needs and create a cost affective aesthetic design based on specific needs. He should be able to handle layout problems or budget problems by suggesting good alternatives and that is also within your budget and then overall he must be a person who is able to understand you well.  Ask your friends/relatives who have recently built their own homes about the architects/engineers they engaged. If they were reliable in terms of time as well as expense they estimated and the overall construction was satisfactory, you could make a choice among them. 

One you have decided on the architect,  give the details of your budget and also about your plan about the floorings, bathrooms, bed rooms etc.  Fix the rate and terms of the payment before work starts. If you have any future plans like extension, partitioning, renting out etc. discuss them with the architect. It is better to ask for 2-3 plans of your idea and choose the best from that.

Choosing contractors

After selecting the architect and finalizing the design, then comes the most important part of your house building. That is choosing a good contractor and starting the work.  When each brick is laid with cement and mortar, you can see your dream taking shape in front of your eyes.  Choosing a contractor is as important as choosing an architect.  When you choose a contractor it is important to know about his previous work, his responsibilities, materials supplied by him etc. Compare the rates and terms quoted to you with at least  three other contractors. It is advisable to check the contractors registration. Visit the contractors present work sites and get satisfied with his work. Fix the rate and terms of the payment before work starts. Usually most of the building contractors could get all your paperwork done - like plan approvals, approvals for power connection, water connection etc. Once the construction work starts, you have to ensure that you make timely payments and visit the site daily to make sure that no unpleasant surprises are in store for you later.

The architects and contractors should have a real understanding between them. That is important for the smooth functioning of the construction work. There are some architectural firms who have all the facilities to handle the construction also. In such cases, one does not need to look out for a separate contractor.