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/diy/ - Do It Yourself


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My wife and I are gearing up to build our home on our lot that we've had for about two years now but I have no idea where to go to get a list of builders that I can take our floor plan to and get quotes. I also don't know if I should go with a builder or a GC. I want to do as much work myself as possible so probably the GC route.

My biggest question is how do we find a builder that fits what we're going for. I wish there was just a company I could call to say "We want a 3000 sq foot house with a side entry garage" and they could say "Oh yeah, you should call this builder. They specialize in that style
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>>2467068
>take my floor plan

Unless you are an architect, you might as well hang it up until you find an architect willing to sign off. It doesn’t matter if you are an engineer with 10000 years experience, you don’t have a stamp or a single permit. It might as well be a napkin

Once you work with an architect, then they would be able to recommend reputable GCs
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>>2467078
When I say "my floor plan" I mean the one we buy off some floor plan website. At this point advancedfloorplans.com is looking like the best place to get one. I just found it and they have 3D renders of every floor plan
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>>2467079
Then you probably want to find a GC that self performs site work and concrete, rough carpentry being a plus. I would just take the plan and go talk to some google results. See if they will budget it. Compare 2-3 budgets

Add 10% in contingency money
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>>2467068
not sure if adair homes operates in your area. if so, literally anyone else would be better.

i think companies like adair, hiline, or any of the other cookie-cutter builders are going to suck in the long run though.
very hard to customize; they have floor plans that you are more or less stuck with
little things like, adding extra outlets (say on the living room floor for lamps or such) or adding a window are either not possible, or cost prohibitive.
the floorplans that they do offer are very bog standard, wnat something like a mud room? not going to happen.
they use the CHEAPEST sub contractors imaginable who will fuck things up left right and center
you get nickel and dimed on upgrades from very shitty/basic fixtures.

the ONLY upside I really saw was that your blueprints and plans are basically rubber stamped when going through the permitting process. some rando architect or building firm is going to go through a lot more scrutiny to get plans approved.
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To get a builder call around and interview as well go to local supply houses and get business cards and so on. Avoid architects like the plague, they'll upsell you BS and want to charge like 15% of construction costs as a fee.

Hire a draftsman for like 2k and if you're even remotely intelligent they'll be able to design what you want and get a local engineer to stamp it, this process alone will likely take 6-8 weeks so know what you want.

Interviewing builders is incredibly important as well as checking their references which many people don't do. I literally went to their previous customers and looked around their sites and so on. Avoid those who don't call you back or answer their phone and are late. This behavior will only get worse once they have your $. Also, never pay up front and only on an agreed schedule for actual completed work.
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>>2467078
Live in a state with no building code and then find a county with no building code.
Do whatever the fuck you want after that.
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>>2467068
If you want to find a builder, look around for houses in your area that are not in a subdivision. Ask any folks working there for the builder or GC.

>>2467079
Waste of time. You'll still need a site/plot plan. Which will have to be drawn up by an architect. You're better off figuring out what size house you want, the city setbacks and designing one yourself that is exactly what you want. Depending on your area and the lot you have, a good architect will run anywhere from $2k up to $5k that includes the stamp, the house plans, site plans, drain plans, etc.

Source: I'm a builder, but I do my own plans.
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>>2467068

Not sure what part of the country you are in, but you want a "custom home builder". You do not want a GC. Even a very experienced GC is not going to bring all the best pieces to the table like a custom home builder will.

Just google custom home builders in your area and call them one by one.

Lol and good luck. You might not even get a single one to call you back. Permits these days take months. The materials are sky high in price. No one will work, or is weeks behind schedule.

Even if you strike a deal with a home builder it could be 60 days before even a single bit of work is done. Expect to see your home completed 10 months from now at the absolute best case scenario.

As far as the look and feel they should have a lot of house plans available as well as a virtual walk through so you know what you are getting. You should also check in on the build once a week and give input on paint colors, flooring options, etc.

> handyman and GC of 10 years
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>>2467082
Have at least 50% more than what they quote if you don't want to kill yourself in your unfinished house when shit goes sideways
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>>2467078
>>2467079
Anons are correct-- you'll still need a stamp from an AIA in your properties jurisdiction familiar with local codes.
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>>2467249
I build whatever I want without permits. If the sheriff comes, I go to lunch and keep working when they leave. Eventually they'll give up and I'll continue doing what I want on my property.
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>>2467078
God, imagine being such a cuck faggot that you live somewhere where they can tell you how to build your house on your land with your money. Lmao
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>>2467489
that's.. pretty much everywhere anon.
where do you live that doesn't have a safety-mom county/jurisdiction?
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>>2467498
Missouri. There are no statewide non-commercial building codes, it's up to each county to pass them into law and enforce them or not. Only 22 of the 114 counties in Missouri have private residence building codes.

https://data.mo.gov/Economic-Development/County-Building-Codes-for-Missouri/iq7s-izvt
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>>2467079
>the one we buy off some floor plan website
Don't.
Four years ago, I had a client who bought a floor plan from such a site. Of course, he wanted it to go onto a lot that was not the proper shape for it -- it was a side-load garage and the site would not accommodate that, it needed to be a front load (or he needed a smaller house). When the County plan reviewer turned it down and commented that the engineering and architectural plans had to match, he asked me (the civil engineer) to revise the architectural plans for him, and I was not going to risk my license to do (P.E.'s are not allowed to practice architecture in this state).
All this to try to save on the cost of hiring an architect on a 4000-plus s.f. house which was going to cost anywhere from $800,000 to $1.2 million to build.
The lot sits vacant to this day, and occasionally I get an email from him asking to help him address the County comments which have been addressed on my end for over three years now (he needs an architect for the rest).
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>>2467499
that's good to know, surprised MO doesn't come up more in the /out/
>i want to live out in the woods and homestead; where should i move to?
threads that are created daily.

two of the worst summers of my life were spent in lees summit and independence; so personally wouldn't want to move back there, but not having to dick around with some 25 y/o environmental studies major who takes glee in blocking people's build plans at the county sounds great.
here in oregon (lane co) it's fucking miserable.
the pipeline between radical environmentalist -> UO environmental studies -> county planner is depressing.
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>>2467486
>Eventually they'll give up
That is NOT how the jews make their shekels.
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>>2467068
I hope you have money and patience OP, because otherwise you’re about to embark on a fucking nightmare
>be me
>MEP PM
>mom decides to put on an in-law for grandma summer of 2019
>shit hits the absolute fan summer of 2020 and mom calls me in tears

I had to essentially act as a third party PM because residential contractors are such fucking scumbags. They know a good mark, and live to fleece the elderly and naive rich people. These guys were pulling shit that not only would get you thrown off the jobsite for commercial work, but blackballed from the industry as well, if not sued into oblivion. In hindsight I would do what
>>2467278
suggests since those kinds of companies live and die on their reputation, even if you’re eating 20% cost on top, let alone cost +.

These are some companies I know well and would recommend to my family and friends. You want to look for outfits local to you with websites similar to these.

https://saltsmanbrenzel.com/
https://www.fbnconstruction.com/

As gay as it sounds, there are guys (generally fine carpenters) who actually care about their work. If you live in an older area, find out who works on the historic houses near you. Those guys are slow but will never, ever fuck you.
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>>2467500
Yeah, I would find a builder first. A good one will have a selection of floor plans that they've done before that can be modified without additional engineering work. The builder we worked with had a bunch of plans and even drove us around to look at some past projects. He also worked with us to change a few things on the plans without any fuss. I would try networking to find a good one. Immediately discount any friends, relatives, or friends and relatives thereof. Walk away from anybody who's truck and equipment is shitty. Same for anybody who's stuff is too nice.
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>>2467068
What you want to do is take the first quote you get and just run with it. Never get another opinion. Lock yourself in with the first quote you get and never look anywhere else.
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>>2467725
I'm surprised most larpers and other assorted off-grid schizos don't know Missouri is one of the few places in America you can just do what you want on a rural piece of land that you own but I'm happy with it. Keeps property prices as low as possible. I can't imagine living any other way. If tomorrow I want to throw up a shed or an addition or just decide to knock down some walls - whatever the fuck - I can just do it. Virtually everywhere nowadays just moving a wall in YOUR HOUSE requires permission from some needledick 20something year old, 6 months of your life and $1000 in permits. Worse probably on the Left Coast.
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>>2469744
>Virtually everywhere nowadays just moving a wall in YOUR HOUSE requires permission
If it's inside, why don't you just do it and shut the fuck up? If your house is old enough, chances are the county has no records of what it should look like inside, and even if they do, you can just do the old "it was like that when I bought it".
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>>2469764
this, imagine so cucked to the goverment
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Unironically find an Amish or Mennonite construction company to be the GC. They all know each other and will get good subcontractors, if they don’t do everything themselves. Some of them are shysters but 99% of them are good folks and will build it right.
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>>2469764
Tbh the only real reason not to do that is if you ever go to sell the house - the buyers bank is likely to spaz out over financing a house with that kind of diy stuff; or if something goes south; insurance will use it as an excuse not to pay
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>>2470994
>Amish
I don't think anon is building a barn
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>>2469539
>>mom decides to put on an in-law for grandma summer of 2019
An in-law?
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>>2471147
(small one room cottage off from the main house. usually built for inlaws/grandparents so they could be near the family but still allow for privacy)
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>>2471402
do these usually have all the standard amenities of a normal house? shower, garage, kitchen? sounds like it would be cheaper to just make a guest house and live in that.
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>>2471402
Most inlaws are basement builds, or over garages in the "bonus" space. A lot of the mcmansions had suites for in-laws, but also marketed for nannies and live-in aids/cleaners, etc.
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>>2471429
Guest houses are different zoning, and not every property has the space for a seperate dwelling. Most in-laws are just built into an existing house, like a suite over a garage, or a re-purposed garage, or a basement suite. They're not new, either. Most of the ones I've seen are just a master bedroom/bathroom combo, sometimes with a small galley or living room. What amenities they have is up to the owner/builder.



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