Wednesday, February 3, 2010

Low cost house construction

Every person trying to build a house would like to build the house at lower cost.But most of them are not willing to do something for cost reduction by following advice of an Architect/Engineer to reduce cost of construction.They want the builder to reduce cost as if the builder is operating with huge profits.Probably a builder of villas and apartments building for sale may be operating at high margin.But small time builders who construct individual houses at practically actual cost basis with very little margins to operate can bring down cost of construction only by compromising on quality of construction.
If you really want your house construction to cost less due to lack of funds,let us see how you can get these cost reductions.
1.A professional plan of the house with maximum utilisation of space and no wastage of space with considerations of structural engineering to reduce structural cost-This is where your major cost reduction come from.Probably you may have to pay more for a professional design of the house.But you save much more in cost of construction.
2.Foundation rubble work-You can go for dry pack rubble foundation to be specifically designed by a Structural Engineer to suit soil conditions rather than simply following costly methods generally adopted by others in your locality.
In stable soil conditions you do not require  plain concrete below rubble foundation.Also you will not require a foundation beam(usually called as belt) above rubble foundation,if you do rubble foundation well packed with forced filling of cavities inside dry packed foundation.
3.Brick work-using usual brick can be costly as each brick may cost about Rs.4-6 depending upon locality.Laterite stone can create problems due to pests in later years.You can go for solid block brick work which will be less costly.
4.Door and window frames-If you use wood,cost can go up.Try to use good quality concrete door and window frames.Cost will come down.
5.Filler slab concrete-Your structural consultant will tell you how to use large clay tiles inside concrete to reduce cost of steel and concrete.Concrete roof  cost will come down.
6.Use manufactured sand instead of river sand for all work except plastering.
7.Use clay tiles for flooring at least for bed rooms where more than 50% area is covered with furniture.At about Rs.15/- per sft it can bring down cost of your building.
8.Electrical and Plumbing work cost can come down if you simply let your Architect guide your Electrician/Plumber.
If I tell all tricks of cost reduction here itself,people may not come for consultation to me.More ways and methods can be told against specific cases as each house construction may require different methods for cost reduction.
You can reduce the cost of construction if you tell your Architect in advance about your financial constraints .All that people ask for is lower square feet  cost of construction without any compromise on controlling cost of inputs as if contractor is simply going to build your house at a loss.
When the contractor get to know that he may incur losses doing your work,he will find one or other excuse to get out of your work as he need profit to survive.

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