Thursday, September 29, 2011

Answers to your queries #Architecture

Position of Kitchen as per Vasthu



i found some comments regarding vasthu on your site

that kitchen should be in east south corner

is there any problem in it being in north

because if u read kanippayurs interview he recommends north for kitchen

if you don't mind to look at the rough sketch as attachment

what's your comment

awaiting for your valuable suggestions

and this is a plan i liked and believes best aesthetic for my plot
does it conflict with vasthu

thank you for sharing your knowledge

because i am getting conflicting views regarding vasthu


My reply

Vasthu is a proper science based on scientific studies done by our forefathers.

Unfortunately that part of Vasthu which explains why certain effects are occurring is lost by not properly documenting the knowledge

What we now know is the effects of Vasthu factors.These are fortunately well documented and is available in books.You do not have to simply follow what some one who claim to know vasthu says.There has to be a logic in what he says..Many people simply believe or accept without any reason whatever some people says.I cannot do anything about it.

North east is Esaanakonam which is ideal location for well,sump tank etc.This area should be lower from other areas for better effect.Esaanakonam is also ideal for Pooja room.Hence this konam should be kept tidy and neat for better prosperity.Kitchen at North East is not good as per Vasthu

South East is Agni konam.Agni konam is the ideal place for Kitchen.If you have a bed room at South east,persons living in that room will have continuous problems and no prosperity.

Your plan is just a few lines drawn by you.While spending lakhs of rupees for building a house,why cant you pay few thousands to get the most appropriate plan by a good Architect? Getting the most appropriate professionally designed  plan of the house is the most important part of the building construction.Only an expert knows the implications of a plan.Then why should you pretend to be an expert and loose your own money?

Renovation of existing house


Dear Sir

This is Thomas from Bahrain. Hope you remember me . i contacted you regarding the renovation of my old house.all my friends are suggesting  that renovation  cost will be almost same like making a new house.Actually my requirement is 2 Bed room with attached bathroom,hall with dining ,sit out,car park, kitchen, work area in the ground floor and 2 bed room with attach bath room and balcony in the first floor. i would like to know approximately how much it will cost me . the reason i am asking this because i am a normal NRI with limited income.can you can help me in this subject ?at least to finish the structure work .waiting for your reply

Thomas P


My reply

An Architect/Engineer is not an Astrologer

A person qualified and experienced in any branch of Engineering prepare an expected cost statement called Estimate by Engineering calculations with the help of data available

How can I predict cost  If you simply say that  you require so many rooms?

Whether the existing building is worth modifying or not I can say only after seeing existing building

When you delay construction even by one day,you are making house construction costly as cost of material and labour go up every day in Kerala.Even if you have only Rs.5 lakhs with you today,start with that money.Waiting for entire money to reach you will result in waiting for the house forever.

Comment on my blog post


Sunder has left a new comment on your post "Desire for lower price for construction":

It is an excellent article by a genuine Architect who understands the fallacy of the insistence of cost per sq. feet concept by the customers. It is an eye-opener really. Thanks a lot.

My reply

Thank you  Sundararajan for your encouraging comments.

Construction of House In two cents of land


Anonymous   has left a new comment on your post "Queries and replies-House Design and construction":

Hello sir,
          Is it possible to construct a house within 2 cents of land?

My reply

Cents is only area of the land and it does not give any idea on frontage and depth of plot.If these dimensions are good enough,Construction of house in 2 cents of land is possible.But the design will have to be within the limitations of the plot.

Concrete mixing


Sir, i saw your website.I understood some details of concrete.  I wish
to know about all the details of concrete mixing,proportions, steel
laying and curing.

My residence at Kollam(not coastal area).

Thanking you in anticipation.


My reply

How can I teach you all those by a blog entry.? I have explained on various aspects of house construction in a simple non technical language in my blogs.To know more about the technology you have to be professionally trained.

Sunday, September 11, 2011

Replies to your queries#Architecture


House with limited Budget

Hello sir, I am Riyas, am planning to build a low cost house on my village(at Trivandrum). so could u please send me a plan for that. my budget should not exceed 10-12 lakhs..
please mail me if possible with

My reply

Have already mailed detailed reply to you.Without understanding your requirements for the house and site conditions,I cannot simply send a plan with a price tag of Rs.12 lakhs.House construction is not that simple as buying something from a shop.

House with Rs.5 lakhs budget

I am Paul , a teacher in Maldives, from Pulpally, Wayanad.

I would like to construct a house in Pulpally. How can you help me? My estimate amount is 5 lakh maximum. Recently I saw a house photo in Malayala Manorama, Veedu, which says the total construction cost is 4.5 lakh.

Can you help me how to do all these things? Please email me details

Paul from Maldives.

My reply

It is possible to build a house costing even less than Rs.5 lakhs.But you cannot have all facilities and features of a costly house.Studying your requirements and site conditions is the starting point of developing the house design

House at Kanyakumari

Hello sir Good day........My name is Ahil. I am a NRI , residing in Australia. My native is mondaikad which is located in kanyakumari district which is 60 kms from Trivandrum. I own a 60 cents square plot. I like to build my dream house in that plot..My requirements are the house should have a majestic look externally, double storied,reception area/sit outs,4 bedrooms,kitchen,hall,an office/study room, car stand for 2 cars, a small mini hall which can be used as a gymnasium....I am looking something around 4000 to 5000 sq. feet...

It would be very helpful and thankful to know whether u undertake projects in my native place and also give me an idea about the cost for building such a house...Is it possible to finish total works including landscaping, interiors within 50 to 60 lacs.......

My reply

Yes.We can design and build your house at Kanyakumari.Mailing you details

Design of House at Hyderabad

Dear Mr. Thomas,

I have come to know about on the Internet. My brother-in-law is in the process of constructing a house in Jubilee Hills, a prime residential Locality in Hyderabad. Land area is 750 sq yds. Family size is :

One Couple

One Married daughter

One studying son- 11 th Std


Profession : Rly contractor

Probable requirements:

Home office to accommodate 6 people including the Director with wash rooms

Provision for Maid & Driver with families including wash rooms

Puja Room, Dry kitchen with informal dining& wet kitchen, Breakfast corner, utilities, wash area

Formal Dining, Living, Home Gym, Home Theatre, Bar/ Entertainment / library area+ powder rooms for relevant areas

One Master Bedroom with attached bath ( Shower, Toilet, wash Basins), walking closets + 3 more bedrooms with attached baths, Lift for the house. Open balconies , Terraces ,greenery, Water bodies  must.

You can plan an office , Maids+drivers accommodation, 3-4 cars parking , below the ground level.

Ground floor: Puja, Kitchens, Dining, Master bedroom + Bedroom for Mother on the ground floor

1 st floor: Remaining things can be planned.

House to be as per vasthu.

I would like to discuss with you . Pl mail me your Hand No and your convenient time to discuss . Once I receive communication from you  I shall send you the Plots Plan along with dimensions . I am accessible via Videoconference. I can send you the exclusive link and we can get connected and discuss in detail.

Look forward to your response.

Best regards

Ashok R Vantair


CEXO International

America,Canada, Australia & India

My reply

I can design the house and provide detailed drawings and act as consultant during the execution of work including occasional visit to site

Selecting plot for buying land

Your blog is very useful especially for people like us who have no idea about design, construction etc. I sincerely appreciate your efforts.

I am really surprised to see the professionalism of your office and appreciate it. Thanks for the reply. Last few days I am in your web reading all the queries and replied. I hope i will meet some one soon who used your services.

I am from Palakkad. We have a plan to buy a plot there mostly this month. As the price cross lakhs we can afford to buy 5 to 10 cents only. Kindly suggest me what all I have to keep in mind when I select a plot. What kind of plot we have to opt if we have to spare 5 cents aside when we construct a house in 10 cents of land. Shall we opt for a paddy field if the location is good? I heard filling can affect the budget if we opt such land. Our plan is build a simple but elegant home within our limited budget.


My reply

Just log in to our website,

Click on architectural guidance.You will get all details.Before you finalise plot,it will be better if you can call me or somebody equally qualified and experienced to check the plot and its suitability for house construction


Dear Mr. Thomas:

I happened upon your blog in a search for split-face concrete block architects.

I wish to construct a very small, 22 feet by 30 feet "castle keep" home in Missouri, USA from split-face concrete block.  (Please see attached photos for the general idea).

The roof would be a simple colored metal steep shed roof--only visible from the back of the house lot, though its incline would be inexpensive to construct
as a design and it would repel rain and snow easily.  Thus, the back wall would be significantly lower to support the lower end of the shed roof.

If you might have time for such a small project, kindly apprise me.

Thank You.

Paul Cobb
North Dakota,

My reply

I can design  your house in USA and provide you with complete architectural/structural drawings and instructions during construction.

To start with we will have to prepare a Basic Plan of the house.For this you have to tell me what all facilities,living spaces you need in the house.Can you also tell me which direction house will be facing?

Once I prepare this Basic Plan that drawing can be a starting point for our discussions

Saturday, September 10, 2011

Architecture-queries and replies


got your mail id from your web site

I would like to construct my new house  with Ferro- Cement technology..Sir, could you please help me to find someone who does this work in Cochin,(North Paravur) area..

Expecting your valuable reply soon

Sreekanth S

My reply

Theoretically yes.Possible.But in Cochin area those who do Ferro cement work take up only  septic tank and water tank work.Unless you have workers skilled in doing Ferro cement work,you can not do construction of your house with Ferro cement walls


Dear Mr.Thomas,

I live in Chennai and I wish to have a house plan based on vasthu principles. Your blog seems to be quite impressive and contains straight forward views.

I would like to have G +1 plan for my east facing plot. Find enclosed one page pdf document containing sketch of my plot. Preferred dimension of the built up area is depicted on the attached sketch.

Awaiting your reply.


My reply

Yes. I can do the design and follow up drawings for execution of the work

Construction methodology

Dear Mr. Thomas,
I am Binu from 'Thottilpalam, 50 km away from Calicut. I am planning to build a house suitable for a middle class family. Two years before I had purchased 22 cent land suitable for constructing a house. This land has road access (for lorry) and it faces towards west. I am searching for a good contractor capable to build a quality house and I wish to maintain quality from foundation to till the finishing. I am working in Qatar as a workshop supervisor in a construction company. I have limited knowledge about building construction and as I have strong desire for building a house, in Qatar also I used to watch the way a building / house is constructing here. Here it is the normal practice that for constructing even a single storey house the foundation is built with reinforced concrete and after that concrete pillars and roof slab on it so that the concrete bricks using for walls will not get the weight of roof slab. But in Kerala, the normal practice is that pillars are minimized in houses and the foundation is constructing with rocks. I would like to know your opinion in this matter.

It would be helpful for me if you could provide your valuable suggestion for constructing a house. If it is possible to construct a house in my area by your firm, please let me know the approximate amount for it.


My reply

In most of the Kerala landscape,we have laterite or stable soil strata.That is why we prefer to go for less costly Rubble foundation and brick walls which carry weight of roof instead of column beam structure.In places where the soil condition is not that good,even in Kerala we go for pile foundation and column beam structure


I have a plan for the house in West direction, designed by an
engineer. The car porch comes at the south west corner partially
projecting to west and partially cut into the south west corner of the
house. A Vasthu consultant told me that it is not vasthu complaint for
the car porch to be there. That vacant portion at kannimoola will
cause lot of trouble for the inhabitants.

I have attached the plan.

Could you please comment on this. Thanks in advance for your valuable


My reply

That is not even a proper plan of the house.It has Vasthu,Architectural and structural Engineering defects.

Some of the defects noted in the plan sent are the following

1.As per Vasthu for a West facing house,car porch and gate should come at North half of the front side of the house.Main door also should come at North side.More towards north better.

2.Kitchen should come at Agni Konam(South east).Bed room at South East will be harmful to those who stay in that room.

3.Master bed room should come at South West.

4.Spiral stair case will be costly,it will take more space and is no more in present day trend.Putting stair case at Front Living room will adversely affect your privacy as every person coming from first floor will have to move inside house visible to guests.

5.Dining space is completely dark.Even living room has lesser light.

6.Dining is too small and work area is too big.

7.As per Vasthu toilet at South east corner and North east corner is harmful

If you want me to re design the plan,please let me know

Construction while working abroad


I have a plot in Polaythodu, Kollam which has 23 cents of land.

I wish to make a house similar to the one you have constructed, which was shown on your website a 3 bedroom house.

I am abroad at this moment so could you please tell me if you will be able to construct a house for us?

How you will be able to construct a new house for us whilst we are abroad?

Also, how long will it take, the cost?


My reply

We can design and build your house in your absence.You will get complete details by email periodically and also you can even see construction going on at your site through a blog specifically for your sites with pictures of work going on periodically posted.

So it will be as good as you are present here in Kerala physically.Being professionals qualified and experienced in the art of building houses,you can get the best at the least cost

Monday, August 15, 2011

Kerala House construction-Queries and replies


Dear Mr. Thomas

I have seen & read few articles that you have hosted on web. Drawing some inspiration from that, I thought it may be a good idea to share & take your advice on the house that I plan to construct in Hyderabad. Based on that, I am attaching Architect's brief for the Duplex villa that I would like to construct in Hyderabad. I have tried my best to put all what came into my mind & the key requirements for the project. Kindly take care of all these parameters while designing the house. As mentioned in my brief, would like to have a exclusive beautiful house which has a blend of traditional Kerala architecture & Modern style architecture.
Would suggest you to mail me few elevations which showcases Modern Architecture & traditional Kerala architecture, where in I could discuss the same with my family & then give you a creative brief of what we would like you to develop. Layout requirements are detailed in the attached note. Do revert back to me with your terms & the process to take this fwd.
In case you need any further inputs / clarification, please revert back to me (or) call me on my cell 
Thomas Ninan
Muscat – Oman

My reply

To start with I require details on house you are looking for,your needs ,dreams including your limitations if any.Once I get details on the plot,I can start developing plan for your house.

With the initial design developed we will have to discuss and arrive at a final plan.From there onwards we go systematically to make your dream house a reality.


Dear Thomas,

Hope you are doing good!

I am planning to build a house but I am worried about that! could you please advice me ?
Buying a villa or building a house which is more good? I have plan for buy good second hand house also

my requirements:

2 storey 2000 to 2500 sq. ft..
normal woods for windows and doors
vitrified tiles in main areas
medium quality sanitary high quality electrical wiring and accessories
high quality paints inside and outside

can I get similar villas in the same expense of building a new home?

Sibi George,

My reply

Buying a ready built house is simply foolishness in Kerala conditions due to following reasons:

1.To increase profit ,construction by sellers will naturally be of lowest quality without bothering about following  Engineering standards

2.Seller normally sells the house taking much higher profit

3.Your requirements for the house may not suit house available for buying



I am Tharanitharan from Chennai. I plan to construct a house in Chennai.
Could you please provide me the complete plan of the house for Elevation shown in your blog and this will
give me some idea to proceed further.


My reply

It will be better to design plan of the house suited to your plot rather than taking plan of the house whose Elevation is given in our blog


Dear Thomas Sir,

I read your article on foundation at your blog and liked it. Can u pls answer my doubt..

We have a site of 28X26 meters size. The site is not level and slope is about 5ft from the front portion to back of the site?

Is there any method other than filling the site with soil and putting a retaining wall at the back end boundary??

Idea of giving few steps inside the house is ruled out.


My reply

As it is a gradual slope,it can be straightened while doing rubble foundation.That is better and cheaper.At the back end boundary if you do not want a retaining wall,you can leave a slope from foundation level of house to back end of boundary.


Dear Mr. VH Thomas,

I am S P Manoharan who is working in Indonesia. I want to construct a house in my native place Alleppey. I got the house plan made by my engineer and it is attached herewith. With the normal stair case I can not have attached bath room in the first floor master bed room. The dimensions of room can not be changed as they are all agreed by my Vasthu Namboothiri.

he bottom bath room dimension can be altered. Can you please send me an offer with a wooden (Teak) spiral case so that my dining room area is not much affected. Please send me the drawing incorporated with the staircase to first floor.

S P Manoharan

My reply

Only option is to redesign the house.For that I need to know outer dimensions of the plot(all four sides),directions and position of roads.

Plan prepared by anybody for a particular plot will not be the same.Better qualifications and experience can make a lot of difference

After the design of revised plan,you can show it to your Namboodiri to check Chuttalavu Vasthu which is a practice followed only in Kerala by old Asaris.If you need proper Vasthu compliance,I can do it on my own.


Hi Thomas

need to know if you can help with house in Mumbai, planning to build a weekend home on the outskirt of Mumbai, river touch plot about 23karea, I have sort of managed to plan the look and feel of the house but not satisfied with the roof of the house.

you based in Kerala and my project is based on the outskirt of Mumbai,don’t know how well it will work, anyhow I am giving you the brief of what I am looking at and also attaching some plan which I have already worked on.

Will you be able to help with the same ?

Rajan Pillai

V.P Leasing 

My reply

Why not in Mumbai or for that matter anywhere  in the world?

After going through what you have sent to me  I would like to comment  as follows:

1.It appears that you have purchased a plot in a Villa Project

2.It is not clear whether you are free to design Villa as per your likes by your own Architect or the promoters have their own Architect designing villas to give villas in the project similar appearance.

3.Do you already have a Basic Plan of the villa designed?If so send it to me in pdf format

4.What you have sent me in pdf format is two dimensional Elevation of the Villa which is not impressive or professional looking

5.To start with I can improve upon the plan (if you have one) or design plan of the villa fresh with your requirements/desires for the house as input

6.I need to know outer dimensions of all four sides of the plot and also direction to which house will be facing.Also I need to know where all roads come near the plot

Plan comes first.Elevation comes next.But we can give you a professional Elevation which will have almost photo quality

Now it is your turn to respond


Dear Sir,

I am Ajay Nair from Palakkad, Ottapalam, Kerala. I am currently working in Saudi Arabia. I have a plan to relocate from my native village in Palakkad to somewhere else. So I am searching for good ready made homes as well as the possibility to build a home in cheap budget. My budget ranges between 5 lakh-10lakh. I prefer to have a home with one floor where two average sized be rooms with attached bathrooms, a kitchen and a drawing room cum dining hall are available. Some variations can be made from this view. I came to know about a cheaper European style Eco-friendly homes lying between my budget range. I would like to know about that. Also i would like to see the possibility of "temple top" or "taravadu" model homes, but small area. I don't need a wide space also. So please check the possibilities of this and let me know the status whatever may be the answer. You can tell me if it is not possible also. I have attached two snaps along with this mail which I got from one of my friend. It seems good for my concept of "temple top" or "taravadu" model homes.

Waiting for your early reply.

Ajay Nair

My reply

Buying ready built house will not be cheap.In fact it will cost much more than building a new house and you will get a low quality construction as seller is primarily interested in profit only.

Two bed room attached house even with a bit small room sizes will be at least 800 sft if you build in a single floor.With present cost it may cost about Rs.12 lakhs and as you intend to construct in future cost can only go up.If you do not have land,land cost will come in addition.

Plan for a house prepared by any one will not be the same

Quality of  design depends to a large extent on the professional training and exposure obtained through experience.

Basic Plan of the house is the most important and critical element of house building

A well designed plan prepared by a qualified professional with experience can save you lakhs of rupees and it can provide you better facilities within your budget.

So simply trying to save few thousands of rupees towards design can put you in to greater trouble which you will be able to understand at least to a lesser extent only after construction of house is over and at that stage you cannot correct it even if you spend any amount of money.

Now you tell me whether you need us to design your house

Cost of construction of your house to be built cannot be predicted by any one.Contractors may tell attractive figures just to get work knowing very well that you cannot do anything other than agreeing to their revised demands after work starts and even on engineering and quality of construction a non professional contractor may do any compromise simply to increase or protect his profit


Hi Mr. Thomas,

I found your e-mail Id on one of the housing construction blog and would like to understand few things from you.

My parents are thinking of renovating our ancestral home, which is situated in a village near Trichur, Kerala. While I understand the quote greatly vary depending on the type of contractor, the current rate from one of the local contractor is Rs. 1800 per sq.ft. This quote is only for renovation and doesn't include foundational work. As my parents and family do not stay there and have little knowledge about the current construction cost,your input/suggestion will be valuable. What is the general range of construction cost per.sq. ft. for renovation or for a new construction. Honestly, I don't want my parents to be fooled by anyone.

Thank you so much!! Looking forward to hear from you.


My reply

Getting quotation from contractors and fixing up lowest bidder is not going to get you quality professional construction of house with proper guidance and assistance to achieve the best  without some one pilfering your money.For that you require not a contractor but professionals like us

Thursday, August 4, 2011

Elevation for 3000 sft 4 Bed house at Thoppumpady,Cochin

Three dimensional Elevation for Four bed attached house at Thoppumpady,Cochin for NRI

Those who are interested in getting plan and other details for the house,write to

frazer antony-30-07-11 copy

Sunday, July 31, 2011

Replies to queries-House construction



Dear Thomas,

I have gone through some of your blogs and thought of sending u an email.

We are planning to build a one storey Kerala house with verandahs with 3 bedroom and 2 attached and 1 common bathroom kitchen and a hall in 16 cent of land in our village,

our budget is around 12 to 15 lakhs. Please help me with your valuable suggestion

on its possibility. if u could just sketch a rough plan it will be more helpful.

Thanks a lot.


My reply

You have not even told where you intend to construct house.16 cents of land simply gives an idea on area of land.For a house to be planned I need to know how much road frontage plot has,where is the road,directions,terrain of land and much more

Plan of the house is specifically designed to suit your requirements,budget,site measurements and site conditions.Any plan made for house for any one will not simply suit you.Three bed room house in single story may have an area of about 1300 to 1500 sft with usual common facilities.Even with present cost of construction,it will not be possible to complete such a house within Rs.15 lakhs.The more you delay construction,more will be the cost

I have sent detailed mail on what all you should know and do to start constructing a house to you

Wooden flooring

What is your opinion about laminate wood flooring?

(Through blog comment)

My reply

Wooden flooring is not costly compared to granite flooring.It is more environment friendly.You can comfortably sleep on the floor and walk without having to worry about negative effects of walking on artificial flooring material.But you will have to keep the floor neat without rubbing it with wet cloth.Wet cloth will damage wood in the long run

Licensee certifying for submission drawings to local authority

you said that architects, licensed engineers or super visors can approve a plan. can you please mention who all include in this category

(Through Blog comment)

My reply

For obtaining Building permit/approved plan from local authority in Kerala,you have to submit application and submission drawings as per rules duly filled and counter signed by a Licensed Engineer/Architect/supervisor having registration of license with Dept. of Urban affairs,Kerala.State

Dream House for NRI at Kannur


Hi I am Céline live in UK.planning to build a house back in Kerala in my home town.while I was going through the construction company my eyes got caught on yours.

hope you will be able to help me.

our place name is Pachani in Kannur.It is a small place ,the area we are planning to build is a flat plot about an acre in between 2 small hills.its a lovely place.

I am looking to build a house within 2800sqft area.5 bed room house,2 bed room down stairs and 3 up.looking forward to see different models please.I am desperate so please do help me.thanks.

waiting to hear from u.

Céline Scaria

My reply

You do not have to be desperate

I can convert your dreams in to reality with professional care,guidance and assistance

I will have to first visit site where the house has to come up to study site conditions and to make myself familiar with site and surroundings so that I can dream your future house better and check Vasthu aspects for the plot so that a Vasthu compliant design can be developed

You will have to write to me in detail what all you hope to have in the house and your dreams for the house.

Construction of house using Ferro cement


Dear Mr. Thomas,

I came across your website on Ferro cement construction. I retired as Chief Gen. Manager, Cochin Shipyard and now stay at Ernakulum.

I require an additional room on the first floor of my residence and having gone through your website came to the conclusion that a Ferro cement construction would be the right option. Could you be of assistance please.

T J Cherian

My reply

A Ferro cement construction will be good.But right now in and around Cochin there is only one some what reliable company doing just Ferro cement septic tanks and under ground water tanks.Due to lack of competition,they are not much customer friendly to do custom built Ferro cement building parts

So option before you will be to do the construction of one extra room with solid block concrete bricks.

Wednesday, July 27, 2011

My replies to your queries



Hello Mr Thomas

My name is Melvin Mathew and I am a resident of Thiruvalla and currently staying currently outside India.

I saw your blog and I feel you are the right person who could help me with some ideas on modification of the outdoor of my house.

I have a big fish tank that was built in front of my house about 6.5 deep and the length is about 9 m and width of 4m. I had different variety of fish there, but nowadays I don't find time to maintain there and don't find people who can help for that as well and so maintaining it has become difficult for me and no more scope of an aquarium there. I don't stay there regularly so I wanted to do some changes with it or modify it so that it can add to the beauty of the house and could be of some use so that I don't just need to close it. I have some grapes growing just above it, hanging on an curved iron rod structure, so closing it will would mean losing the grapes which I don't want to..

Could you please help me with some good ideas, and if possible I can call you as well or we can meet when I come to Kerala. Thanks in advance for your reply.

Warm Regards

Melvin Mathew

Bradford University School of Management, MBA 2011

My reply

I can give you suggestions on better landscape design for your house outdoor only after a site visit.Are you interested?

CRZ restrictions for river side house


Hi Mr. Thomas,

Found your website very useful/informative.

I am a UK resident, primarily from Palakkad.

I had brought a property – 23 cents behind UC College – right at the bank of Periyar – the property can be seen from the Mangalapuzha bridge.

The property was divided from a bigger property of 50 cents and the person who sold me has a big house constructed in his plot a few years back.My property has a 20 min frontage and has a depth of 35 meters.

I now want to sell this off due to other commitments. Recently, I heard that there are some rules which prohibit construction at riverside.

Is this true ?  Appreciate if you could spare some valuable time and provide some guidance on the same ?

Vinod Kumar

My reply

CRZ act prohibits construction up to 50M from river side

It is possible to construct if you have an existing building line.(an existing building should come in same line of your building) or a road in between.But you will have to get prior permission from concerned local authority before commencement of construction

Renovation of Existing House


Dear Sir,

My name is Siva Kumar. I reside in Chennai.I am planning to renovate the ground floor of my house and to construct first floor as well.

Just wanted your help for the designs and plans. Also, is it possible for you to visit the site? If yes, then please let me know the date and expenses.

Please find attached pictures of my existing house in Chennai.



Dear Thomas,

Seen your site which offers various services in home renovation.

Let me introduce my self as Saji Dominic working in Abu Dhabi.

We got an old house approx. 40 years old in mukkotuthara near Erumely. Its a normal house . Would like to know if are taking contracts for such jobs or will be able to provide a good design for the same.

Since the place is distant from Ernakulum, based on your convenience i will be able to share you few snaps of the house to be renovated.

Appreciate your response.

Saji Dominic

My reply

To start with, I will have to visit villa to be remodeled and study work involved for remodeling/extension.After the site visit, I will give a report on what exactly can be done on the existing structure to meet your expectations/needs

Based on this initial evaluation of work, using measurements collected from site and your old drawings related to the house if any, I will prepare what we call a Basic Plan for the modified house which will show positions and dimensions of rooms, doors and windows of the remodeled house only. This Basic Plan if required can be revised without any extra charges to meet your requirement fully, subject to our acceptance of your change requests

After this, we will go systematically in a professional manner by providing complete professional care and technical  guidance to reach your dream house.

Tuesday, July 26, 2011

Elevation for three bed house

Elevation for three bed room house designed by us  for an NRI given below

Three bed house

Any one like to get plan of this house mail me to

Thursday, July 21, 2011

Replies to queries-House construction



Dear Sir,

I,m interested in a new house which is built in a panchayat.All the documents seems to be perfect except building approved plan and permit .The owner is giving some excuse like its not there or its with panchayat office. And he says that permit is  not required for his plot because .its only 2.5 cents.

What is the validity of a permit.If we are third owner. Do we  require permit?

Sir I want to know whether he is correct. Should I buy his property.?


My reply

For a completed house with building no and panchayath tax paid receipt you do not have to worry about building permit and approved plan.There was a rule about few months back which demanded obtaining building permit in panchayath also.Currently there is no such requirement of building permit prior to construction

With the building no you can even check with concerned panchayath whether the house is built as per rules.Better still you can approach a professional agency  to check all legal and technical aspects related to the property including the building.Such verification of documents and property will make you safer in purchase of property



we are interested  to contact with you about the construction of a house in Edappally Cochin,but we are still in Dubai . We are having only 5 cent land there and   it is a square land .So that how many square meter house we can construct  and  what is the cost per  square meter  .We are awaiting your reply

Cherian Thomas

My reply

Cents is only area of land.While designing a house a better frontage,positions of roads on sides of property matters a lot.Unless you send me plot sketch of the land,I cannot comment on how best land can be utilised for building a house.

If you tell me what all you need in the house,I can give you an approximate cost figure even though cost can be calculated only after finalisation of plan of the house.



Hi Thomas,

My Name is Bony and am from Kolenchery area.

Really appreciate your help to us NRIs.keep up the good work.

We got a nice plot near the NH in Kolenchery . The plot is on a slope but already leveled.We are planning to construct our home there. I am in Canada with family. My Parents and in laws are insisting that they can complete the supervision etc. for the house..They are old and tired and  don't want them to suffer much. Not only that as an Engineer I am not much happy with current 'Asharis' as well.

Please advice what service you can provide me in Kolenchery. I would really like to see a start to finish job with clear timelines.

I will be there for a vacation from Aug 27th onwards and will be there for one month.

We would really like a 4or 5 bedroom with bath attached , Front verandah and a traditional type roofing.



My reply

I am mailing you details which you need to know for designing and building a new house.We can design and build your house at Kolenchery from developing design concepts to completion.

Monday, July 18, 2011

Your queries-House design and Construction

Another Building in same plot


Hi sir have a nice day

I have one plot in s.n.nagar Irinjalakuda  16cent already have one house in this plot now i want made another shop cum house if it possible or not  [two bed room ]

Smitha Sajeev

My reply

I will have to visit site and study site conditions before I can comment on your query

Restarting Construction


Dear Sir;

First of all I would like to introduce myself;my name is Salim Abdul Aziz currently working in Saudi Arabia. I have laid a foundation of 1350 sq.ft. in Thiruvalla, Kerala in two years before.  The foundation is including three bed rooms, One hall + dining, kitchen +work are, and two bathroom. Now I want to start next step to finish until roofing.  So,would you please confirm me approximately how many rupees is required me to finish until roofing. I am planning to start the construction November –December.  I need this information to arrange the money before starting construction.

Your early response will be highly appreciated.


My reply

If you have plan of the house,send me.I have to visit site and study site conditions and take measurements from site.After obtaining details,we can work out an Engineering Estimate which will give cost indication.Just by knowing details given by you no body can give cost indication

Cost indication


Dear sir

I have been going through your blog and found it very informative .I am planning to build a house in Ernakulum district,I am presently employed in the USA,planning to begin the construction pretty soon.

Could you please have a look at these specs,that I have in mind

around 2000+ sq. feet
4 bed rooms
traditional Kerala plan

Any idea what would be the approx. cost.

Thanks in Advance
Arun Nair

My reply

Cost can be guessed or rather estimated only after we have at least initial design of the house to be built ready

I am sending you our standard introductory mail which will give details you need to know  when you start thinking of planning your house construction

Use of wood for house construction


Hi Thomas

I liked your blog.  My name is Biju and I am constructing a house at Irinjalakuda.  I need your advice in selecting wood for door frames. Which wood is good for door frames. I cannot afford Teak and now the trend is using an imported wood called Pincoda. How is the quality of these wood.  I have an architect and he says not to select the wood now as it is rainy season.  Since the wood will absorb water and the quality of the wood will be poor. He asked me to wait for another 4 to 5 months, so that we may get good wood.  Is it true


My reply

Pincoda is an imported wood not suited to our climate of extreme heat and humidity.

It is better to use Anjily wood  which is at least 60 years old as younger Anjily wood when used may can use Anjily for door,window frames and Mahogany for shutters if you cannot afford Teak wood

It is true that you have to use seasoned wood(wood which is dried up enough after cutting).In rainy season quality of wood do not vary .

New Construction


Dear Mr. Thomas,

Whilst browsing net, I came across your advises and information on building house. I feel you are the right person to consult with.

I am from Annamanada near Mala and presently working in Doha Qatar. I intent to build a house and wish to take your valuable directions.

I have a house of three bedrooms in 18 cents of land. and this house is 25-28 years old. I wish to demolish this and build a better one within my budget.

Please advise me, in order to seek your service what is the next step.

Will appreciate your response.

Sabu Abu

My reply

First step is to list out what all you need in the house

Second,list out what all you hope to have in the house if funds availability can permit

Third,get the best Architect with qualifications,experience and lot of common sense to design your house and to guide you from concept to completion of house construction

Then,you will be properly and professionally guided to achieve the best with the least cost

Training with us


am Teesha Majumder.i have already send u my my resume to u,i would like 2 have training in your company for short period of time.

one of my friend had already send u her resume,shreya Ghosh dastidar.and u have accepted her resume.and my another friend will also send u her resume for the same.

actually we are three friends and would like to go take the training under you together.

if you kindly,accept us as trainee under you,we will be grateful to you.

My reply

Short term training can be given without any payment on either side for architecture/civil engineering students willing to visit sites

Assignments in class passed over


HI ! I m a architectural student of 2nd year.from VIDYAVARDHA'S IDEA, NASHIK.(MAHARASHTRA).


My reply

I cannot do assignments in class for you.If you  want you can add me in Facebook and chat on your queries

Saturday, July 16, 2011

Follow me on Facebook and twitter

Log onto our websites

Click on photo gallery to view few pictures of houses designed and built by us

You can have a look at few pictures of houses designed and built by us at Facebook page. You can even add me as a contact in Facebook so that you will get continuous updates on my blog entries and interactions with clients.

Here is the link:!/profile.php?id=531348963&sk=photos

Follow me on twitter and keep in touch!/archtomy

Tuesday, July 12, 2011

Answers to queries-House Design and construction

Cost of construction



I got your e-mail ID from I am planning to build a home. I have already:
Acquired land
Created a plan.Kindly help me estimate the cost of building the home.We already prepared a plan. Just want to know a rough estimate. Will you be able to help?


Jinesh. P. G.

My reply

Just any plan prepared by any one will not suit your house to be built.Most important part of building a house well is not getting a contractor who quote lowest rate to get work and start demanding extras at every stage and finally giving you worst house at high cost.

Get the best plan designed by the best Architect you can find with lots of experience.Experience and lots of common sense make an Architect the right person for you

A well designed plan can save you lakhs of rupees and better utilisation of your space and money

Improving on plan prepared


Good day Sir,

My name is Sreejith Sadanandan, a resident of Pandanad (near Chengannur). My brother is working abroad as draughtsman . Now we together are planning to build a new house just behind our old one, considering our front courtyard and space constrains. Towards this, my brother prepared a plan, we discussed over it and made some changes considering some very basic vasthu aspects. This plan just satisfies our room and space requirements.

Now we need an expert architect to look into the plan and improvise the plan for a better appearance and optimum utilization of space considering the technical aspects and current trends. In addition we are a little worried about the roof part, its appearance after the competition and rain water flow related technicalities. Yesterday I happen to see your website, got interested in your designs and decided to consult you with my plan.

I'm attaching the plans with changes being made in the final plan. I request you to look into the plan and improvise it. With your expertise and vast experience, I hope you can make this plan a far better one. We have not yet decided to build the house on a contractual basis or else. Further, I can come down to your office any time you require. Thanking you,

                                                                                                                                        Sreejith S

My reply

I will go through plan and other  drawings sent by you and will write to you with my comments.It is good that you thought of getting your plan checked at this initial stage itself.




I got your mail id's from your website when I was searching for information about red oxide I hope you had done your projects on red-oxide flooring. Even otherwise could you please advice me on the cost of red-oxide flooring. That would be really a great way to decide red-oxide flooring for my house.
Since the cost of Vitrified tiles is high with Rs.45 for the material at a minimum and another Rs.45 for the labour and materials I thought I can go for red-oxide flooring. More over its beautiful and gives an aesthetic look.

My reply

You can use clay tiles on floor.Cost around Rs.20 per sft

It is difficult to get masons who can do red oxide flooring well these days



Dear Sir,

I came across your articles (construction of houses) on the net.I want to make a house in Changanacherry.I stay outside Kerala.Thought of making a 2 storey so that I can give the upper floor for rent.I can afford only 20 lakh loan.My rough plan comes to 1700sqft.

What is your opinion about Low Cost houses ? How good are interlocking bricks for Kerala weather?pls advice.Do you have branch near Changanacherry?Do you take up construction in any place?I had shown my plan to a contractor , he quoted 1500/sq. ft.But I cant afford.Please help              


My reply

Low cost houses of Larry Baker about 15 years back were based on assumption that “material is  costly and labour is cheap”.So any amount of labour used to save material cost was the basis of “low cost houses” of those days.

Today labour is costly and difficult to get.So efforts are on to reduce labour to the extent possible in house construction.I do not recommend interlock bricks for house construction.You can use it for compound wall construction.

We can design and build your house at Changanassery.Right now we are doing a house at Changanassery.Regarding quotation given by contractor read what I have written above in another reply.

Square feet plinth area of the house will be known only after your Architect finalise plan of your house and you cannot simply assume it.

House with limited budget


I am  having a plot of 15 cent.I would  like to make a house of  1400 - 1600 sq. feet and  my budget is 12 - 15 lac.i prefer to a 4 bed room home,,work area,dining room.and all the bedrooms are to b attached..if u can send me some photos of these type of houses,it will b more helpful for me.and one more thing my budget will remain same.  tat much money only m having.


My reply

It may not be possible for you to construct a four bed house with just Rs.15 lakhs even by present cost of construction inputs.If you postpone construction,cost can only go up.

My advice to you is to start construction with whatever funds you have as in Indian conditions cost of all inputs can only go up due to large scale uninterrupted looting by politicians.All these scams are pushing prices up




Friday, July 8, 2011

Answers to queries-House design



Dear Sir,
I would like to know about vasthu.

My plot is Facing to South. can you please give me the details of bedroom,kitchen and wells position in the plot,

thanks in advance.


My reply

For a South facing plot,Master bed room should come at South west,Kitchen at North west(south East is first option.But then it will be in front side of house),Well at North East.



Dear Thomas,

We are a Cochin Based builder  We are  looking for ready to install wooden hand rails in hard wood. If you supply wooden hand rails please let us know the nature of service rendered by you and terms and conditions

Alex Antony,

My reply

We can design totally different type wooden stair case with modern inputs and also undertake to supply and install not only stair posts and handrails ,but also complete interior wood work for house with traditional Kerala style carvings and art work

Thursday, July 7, 2011

Answers to queries



hi sir,

My name is prince  and I am working in air force.I would like to make an independent house of around 1000- 1500 sq. budget is 12 to 15 lac.I am planning to make this house next year beginning.please provide me the instructions.


My reply

You have to tell me the following:

1.Where do you intend to construct house?

2.Square feet plinth area of the house will be known only after your Architect designs your house plan suited to your site conditions,your needs and possible budget.So tell me what all you need in the house and what all you hope to have in the house.

I am copying below our standard Introductory mail which will give you a fair idea on how to go about designing and building a house.



I have a plot at Cherai ( about 2 km from beach ). its about 28 cents. I plan to build a traditional Indian home there.
am currently studying in USA, but is at Vypeen ( cochin ), for about a couple of weeks. I wish to know how you will be able to help me.

I might not be open for visiting the plot, cause i wish to keep the plot and the neighbours from being disturbed. that could be done only when everything is fixed.

Yours Sincerely,
Arun Kannanganat

My reply

Ok.I do not have to visit plot.You can send me plot dimensions,position of roads nearby and directions.Also write to me in detail on what all you need in the house


Dear Mr. Viruvelil,

I have a 06 cent corner plot in Kakkanad facing South with a bell mouth on south west and I would like to build a 2200 sq. ft. house with following features,

Car Porch on east south

Sit out

Kitchen 4*4.25m on south east behind car porch

4 bed rooms with attached toilets ( 4*4.25m) ( Toilet 2*1.5m)

a common toilet under Stairs

1 Hall ( 6*5m) south west

1 dining ( 5*5 m) North East

Balcony and Open terrace on South west

Please find attached sketch of plot, a rough plan drawn by me, preferred  pictures of house.

Is it sense to give contract to a local contractor..

Please help me to build beautiful simple house to meet my budget avoiding costly extra works.

Kind Regards

Biju Antony

My reply

I will look at drawings and details sent by you and will reply in detail later

If you want to build your house at Kakanad,why don't you think of giving us entire work from design to completion of house?



Dear  Thomas,

Happened to see you blog. Definitely you are giving very valuable information for people like us, who are planning to build houses. I have a 7.5 cent rectangular plot in Peyad, Trivandrum with a 30 year old tiled house. I would like to demolish that house to build a house of around 2000 sft. In order to make an estimate I prefer you to visit the plot during my next vacation ( after 1 month- at present I am in Dubai).

Please let me know your charges for the visit/consultation.



My reply

I can visit your site study site conditions,take measurements and provide you a plan of the modified house to start working on your desire to remodel your existing house

From there ,I will guide you step by step to convert your existing house  to a better house with more facilities and modern look with all it's old glory retained

Kindly indicate your possible period of visit in advance for me to confirm date of my visit to your plot,as I cannot commit a date of visit on short notice

Monday, July 4, 2011

House Construction-Queries




I am Mr Vijay Chacko and owns a small plot around Cherai beach (about 6cents)

I am thinking of constructing a small house on it may be about 1600sq feet.

So needed the help of an architect who can guide me with the process

in terms of making an ecofriendly  and cost effective place.As i got your mail id from the net and went through your other projects thought

ill check whether you can help me with it Do revert back

Vijay Chacko

My reply

It is exactly for helping people like you,we are in business.You will have to write in detail about what all you hope to have in the house including your wildest dreams for the house

Our job is to convert your dreams in to reality while trying to keep cost of construction to the essential level.In short we want to give you the best at least cost without wasting any built up space ,providing maximum space utilisation

I will have to first visit site to study site conditions,then discuss in detail with you about your needs for the house and then proceed systematically advising you on every step of construction and design of the house



I am negotiating on a site near Calicut Beach at Kerala around 100 * 100 i.e 24 cents and looking to construct flats on that
Do i have to create a construction company for that or can i do it in my proprietor concern
what else papers we need in Kerala
how many FSI or Floor area can be constructed and at what cost approx. with the best of facility and all modern amenities like 2 lifts landscape fire safety sewage treatment paper works getting plan approval etc..
please guide and send me details on further discussions

My reply

About starting a construction company or accounting it in your proprietary concern are matters to be decided by you in consultation with your lawyer and Chartered accountant.But with my limited knowledge I can tell that it will be better to have at least a private limited company formed for construction related business as it will limit your liabilities which the company may make while operating construction activities

For proceeding on design and construction,I will mail you details

House Construction-Answers for your queries



Hi Thomas,
Just today only I came to know about you and It was my bad luck.  I already stated to build a house with 3500 sq. ft.  Kottekkad Trichur.  Normal house for a big family including myself and my family, my parents and my two brothers & their family.  Now plastering over.  As it was in a small village, I have given to a local contractor.
Please let me know will car porch, sit out and balcony be calculated as full built up area.  I do not have any idea about the sq. ft calculation.  Attaching my plan drawing.  Please help me to get correct sq.ft....please help.
Thanks & Regards,

My reply

You have reached only up to plastering.After this stage you require more assistance and guidance from a professional.

It will be good if I can visit your site

After completing structure and plastering work, you require continuous guidance from a qualified and well-experienced Architect

You need advice and guidance of a qualified and experienced person to know various options available to you, latest trends and ways and means to decrease cost while improving utility and appearance of the building.

Look at some of the pending works

1. Putty finish for walls and painting

2. Flooring and toilet wall/floor tile laying with latest trend designs/patterns

3. Plumbing and sanitary works

4. Electrical wiring and fittings

5. Interior woodwork like modular Kitchen, cupboards and Interior lay out design

6. Furniture work with woodcarving

8. Land scape design, arrangements and much more

We can undertake these after structure work anywhere in Kerala by providing professional guidance and expert workers

Each contractor has his on method of calculating plinth area of the house based on his understanding with the client.It is for him to say whether he considers car porch,Sit out and Balcony which have lesser cost input to be considered at par with other areas of house when costing based on plinth area has to be considered.If required we can visit site, take measurements and using computerised Auto CAD software tell you exact plinth area of the building



Hi Thomas,

This is Neethu Thomas from Bangalore.

I have spoken to you today.

Could you please let me know the details (Plans and Tariff) for re innovation of an existing house.

Thanks for your help and time.

Neethu Thomas

My reply

To start with, I will have to visit villa to be remodeled and study work involved for remodeling/extension

After the site visit, I will give a report on what exactly can be done on the existing structure to meet your expectations/needs

Based on this initial evaluation of work, using measurements collected from site and your old drawings related to the house if any, I will prepare what we call a Basic Plan for the modified house which will show positions and dimensions of rooms, doors and windows of the remodeled house only. This Basic Plan if required can be revised without any extra charges to meet your requirement fully, subject to our acceptance of your change requests

After this, we will go systematically in a professional manner by providing complete professional care and technical guidance to reach your dream house



how can i calculate cost of work to be paid to contractor?

My reply

First of all,you have to get a qualified/experienced Architect to guide you on design and construction of house.
He will guide you on how terms of contract can be fixed with your contractor

Sunday, July 3, 2011

Question,answer session again



Dear Thomas

I am very much interested to read your replies for others queries.  I am building a house at Trichur and it is around 2500 square feet.  Foundation is completed and now the next stage is to fix door frames. I live in Canada and visit Kerala only for 15 days in two years.  My contractor says  that if we fix wooden door frames there will be ants problems in future and wood can be easily destroyed and my contractor prefer to fix concrete door frames.  Is it advisable to fix concrete door frames instead of wooden frames.  I read a review about concrete door frames that it is very difficult to put the hinges and door won't be closed properly..

Your advice regarding this will be highly appreciated


My reply

It is not wise to design and build your house without active involvement of a qualified experienced Architect ,simply relying on advices of a contractor for whom commercial interests are more important and naturally he may misguide you on many matters related to construction to safeguard his own interests.

If you can send me pdf copy of plan of your house I can comment on the plan without any charges.I can also take up role of professional consultant for the building construction.

If concrete frames are properly manufactured with all technical requirements properly met,it can save money.Good wood will not get deteriorated as he says.Contractors usually use bad wood to increase their profit

Most of the concrete frame manufacturers do it with very little quality considerations and hence I will not advice you on using it except in case quality is certified by a qualified professional



Hi Thomas,

I saw your blogs quite interesting (few are my dream taste in fact) quite interested to know few things for a house which I may need to build in Trivandrum. I am  working for Emirates group in Dubai.

Planning to build 3000 sq. in 2 floors for rental purpose. Will not be staying in Trivandrum for at least 5 more years. I have land  10.5 cents and have a very huge tree (Anjili) so no need to buy wood I guess. Again how much will it cost if I want to build  a good house for this purpose 2 floor , 3 bedroom each floor attached.

I know its hard for you to say, but sorry  I am worried to jump if it doesn't fit my pocket.

Appreciate if can kindly advice what the techniques to reduce cost. Some of my friends told me that going for a normal bathroom fitting and modular kitchen will reduce the price.


My reply

With the present cost indications house may cost around Rs.60 Lakhs.But as price of all inputs keep going up almost everyday,by the time you complete the house it can only go up.This cost figure is just a guess

There is no point in postponing construction of house even for a day . Waiting for money to reach you in sufficient quantity to start construction is simply foolish as tomorrow you may not have the funds required even to start construction with the rate of cost increases

Even if you have funds for foundation work,do it now and never postpone.

First and foremost technique to reduce cost of construction is to get proper professional guidance right from beginning of design till final completion.Even people who have constructed one house say that he knows everything about house construction and will be willing to give free advice to any one.

After building directly more than 200 houses and acting as designer and consultant for many more buildings,I still learn more with each new project.When you get my services you not only get benefits of my expertise and awareness of latest technology inputs in the field,but also benefits of my rich experience

So simply do not go to some one who will give you a plan of the house free.That free design will drain your money in lakhs and the inconveniences and wastages of house thus built cannot be corrected or wished away later however hard you may try.

Make sure you get services of the best professional in the field.His fees will not be a loss for you as he will give you a better house at much lower cost than what you expect

Friday, July 1, 2011

Queries and replies



Myself Shameem, from Kannur, Kerala, presently residing in Saudi Arabia(NRI). thru website we happened to know your works and much interested   as I am presently looking forward to design house for my family

Presently we have a plot of 35 plus cents and wish to  utilize 22 cents of it for the residential building and landscape.

Kindly requested to support me. Please give your proposal& terms in two options

Option One : With initial drawing, elevation, work drawings,structural drawings, 3D, fabrication details, electrical, plumbing, wood works,finishing works, flooring, Landscape details, Centering layout, Bill of Quantities;

Option two : With initial drawing, elevation, work drawings,structural drawings, 3D, fabrication details, electrical, plumbing, wood works,finishing works, flooring, Landscape details, Centering layout, Bill of  Quantities; Selection of materials, Selection of contractor/s, periodic visits   or work check, progress, guidelines & support, check if building is as per  Architectural drawings, post construction including interior design,development of interior layouts

By July4, 2011 I will be Kannur and will meet you. Prior to this  need an indicative proposal from you in order to plan our  program initially.Thank you and look forward to your indicative proposal as  detailed

Shameem Mohammed

My reply

From beginning to end of construction of house we guide you,advise you provide you drawings,instructions,guide workers and take you slowly to your dream house

First step is design of the house.For this I will prefer to visit your site and study site conditions.Even without site conditions plan  of the house can be  prepared.But for better results,I need to visualise your future house in the plot.For this a site visit will help a lot.

Instead of going for all details initially itself let us go step by step.First and foremost is getting a good plan of the house.Once that is done more than half of your problem is solved



My name is Mani Kuttan currently working in Saudi Arabia. I have a piece of land measuring 11 Cents (to be on safe side take 10) near Trissur Swaraj Round. May I know whether I can build 6 apartments in three floors in that plot, with an average area of 1300/1400 SQFT each apartment

The idea is to own one flat and sell the remaining to my friends who are ready to take it. Initially my friends wanted to buy flats from some builders but after the “Apple A day” they changed their idea and pushing me to construct an apartment. My idea was to sell the land but with this in mind I am looking for an a

I am looking for a professional who can assist me to accomplish this dream as I do not have any one to help back in Kerala. I am coming for a one-month vacation from 28 July 2011 and would like to meet you in person. It all depends whether I can construct a G+2 building with 6 apartment within this 10 cents of land. The land is situated at 2.25 Km from Swaraj Round and falls within the Trissur Municipal Area, approach road has a width of 3meter. If it is possible, please let me know your charges and bank account details to pay the fee for your consultation.

My reply

Six apartments in land of 11 cents do not look workable.I can visit site and then we can start working on it.I think one apartment each at each floor along with common facilities including car parking can be done

Any way it is a good idea to have your own apartments specially designed and built for you by a professional agency like us instead of booking for an apartment through apartment builders and finally loosing entire money paid as advance,without getting anything in return

Thursday, June 30, 2011

House design and construction-Queries and replies



Hello  Thomas,

   I am NRI having some land near Kaduthuruthy,Kerala. I like to make 3 to 4 small to medium size houses in that land. if you are available for a consultation please send me a replay.


Joseph C.K

New York, USA.

My reply

Basically such a project require careful planning and professional involvement from beginning to end.

I will have to first visit site and study site conditions.You will have to send me copies of land sketch and also what all you plan to have in a typical Villa.Also you have to tell me type of budget you plan to have for each Villa



Hi Thomas,

I am about to start constructing a home on 21 cents land. The builder I consulted let me know that car porch, sit out and balcony will be calculated as full built up area. I am not so convinced and would to get your opinion on it. Now my plan was to build a 2000 sq. feet home. He says as per his calculation it would come to around 2350 sq. ft. Is he trying to cheat me? Kindly let me know.

I would like to use your service for landscaping too.



My reply

First of all do not simply rely on whatever a builder says.Before starting construction of your house get a professional design from a qualified and experienced Architect

Once you have a professional design finalised you can also get a detailed Engineering Estimate from the Architect which will give you a fair idea on cost of construction expected.With these basic data you can negotiate with a builder for better terms with the assistance and guidance of the Architect

In case you are interested in having our services we can help you from design to  completion of building



Dear sir,

I visit your site Kerala and I try to post a comment and I couldn't. That is why I am sending
this mail to you. I am Sajikumar working in Kuwait. I am going to purchase a seven cents house plot in panchayath
area TVM district. Total 25 house plots are included (almost 200 cents) in that land.This land is 150 meter far from MC road.
4 meter width road is connected to all plots. But I heard 8 meter width road and  waste dumping area should required, if more
than 5 house plots in one land. Otherwise panchayath will not give sanction for build a house in that area. Is it right? please advice me?
or from where I can get the right answer. I will expect your valuable reply.

Thanks & best regards

My reply

Before starting development of plot and division of land in to plots for construction of villas,developer has to obtain sanction from Regional Town planning authority who will have to approve division of plots with all mandatory facilities and common facilities.Check with your builder whether he has got such a sanction for plot development and obtain a copy of the sanction and verify it  with the help of a professional Architect

At present there is no need for obtaining prior Building permit from Panchayath except in special grade Panchayaths.However Building rule provisions will have to be strictly adhered to.

Get professional assistance before you make any financial commitments.WE can assist you if you require our services

Design and Construction of house-Queries and replies



Dear Thomas Sir,

I am Johnson writing you from Dubai. I am in the very beginning stage of preparing a plan and happened to go through your blog.

An architectural firm from Trissur is working on my plan and they have just sent me the preliminary plan.I here by attaching the same . I  would like to have your consultancy service for fixing a best & and a very cost effective  plan for my plot.

My plot is in Puthuppally Kottayam Dist.Please advise me, How can we go ahead in accomplishing  the above?


My reply

On going through plan sent by you I could make out few defects in it.Some of them are the following:

1.For an East facing house both Gate and Car porch should come at Northern half of the frontage.Here car porch come at South side

2.For an east facing house,Kitchen can be at South East(Agni Konam) or in your case it will be better to go for the second option position of Kitchen,North West.North East is Esaana Konam which is ideal for Pooja room and well and not good for Kitchen

3.For a modern Kitchen Store is not required.It is a mere waste of space as Modular  Kitchen will be designed to have storage space separately  for each item used in Kitchen arranged in a manner convenient for house wife to reach for while working in Kitchen instead of old fashioned Store which is nothing more than a dumping place.

4.U shaped stair case is out dated and old fashioned.It leaves lot of un utilisable dark space below.Present trend is to convert Stair case in to a show piece with carefully designed cabinets underneath which can be used either as display place or storage space.Also Vasthu require climbing of stairs from West to East(In this case East to West)

5.At entry to house immediately after a small Foyer a wall comes blocking entry passage.It is highly inauspicious.

6.Toilet at South East corner  is not good  as per Vasthu

It will be better if I can visit your site and redesign the plan of the house

Basic Plan of the house will show positions and dimensions of rooms, other living spaces, doors and windows

We will be preparing this Basic Plan in AutoCAD software and you will get a pdf copy by email within a week of site visit.

Based on mutual discussions this plan prepared can be revised and reviewed and changes accepted by our experts can be incorporated in the plan.

This is the most important document for a house construction. A well-designed plan by a qualified professional with good experience in designing and building houses can give you better facilities, appearance and lesser cost of construction.

Basic Plan for the house will be prepared after site visit,taking into account following:

1.       Information provided by you on your needs, desires and hopes for the house.

2.       Vasthu aspects

3.       Traditional Kerala Architecture features

4.       Modern Architecture features

5.       Structural Engineering aspects to reduce cost of construction

6.       Kerala Building Rules

7.      Features of site and surroundings

I require detailed write up from you on what all you require in the house including your dreams for the house.

Our technical knowledge in the fields of Architecture, Structural Engineering and Vasthu will be used while designing your house.



Hi Mr.Thomas,

Got your details from Kerala

Am planning to make a( traditional-modern mix) house in a small plot of land of 4 cent with in a budget of 7-10 lakhs.The land  is reclaimed field in Anchal,Kollam.

i would like the house as small as possible with a hall ,kitchen and front room as ground floor and 3 bath attached shoe-cabinet type bed rooms on first floor(Some what studio-type).

Please advice

Sajith V Pillai.

My reply

What you have sent is not an Engineering or Architectural plan of the house

At best it can be treated as expression of your imagination about plan of your house

Building a normal house of three bed room with a budget of Rs.9 lakhs will be practically difficult.Even if you have only Rs.9 lakhs with you now it will be good to start construction now with a well designed plan of the house prepared by a qualified and experienced Architect.A good design of the house can save you lakhs of money and provide you better facilities with better space utilisation

As cost of all inputs of house construction keep going up everyday,it will be foolish to wait for having entire money estimated to reach you.Even if you can do only foundation of house now,do it now.Tomorrow will be costly.Housing loan is available without much difficulty now offering long term repayment options.If required we can help you on that also

Saturday, June 25, 2011

Design and construction of house-Queries and replies

Review of plan prepared


Dear Mr.Thomas,

Please find the floor plan, site plan and electrical markups and vasthu corrections (not much changes, except few sizing and over all area) ..

Hope and believe this will help you to review and give your valuable suggestions and guidance on the attached plans .Based on this we will proceed further to next stage of scheduling a site visit and further steps..

FYI – We like follow cost effective, natural/eco friendly but classic-traditional-elegant- approaches with innovative and modern techniques.


My reply

On Vasthu,you seem to have consulted typical Kerala ashari who go by wrong ideas and Chuttalavu which has no mention in any of the authentic Vasthu books

Even positions of rooms they follow are different and wrong

For example South east is Agnikonam ideal place for Kitchen.North east is Esaana Konam ideal for Pooja room and well and definitely not good for Kitchen or Bed room

You have bed rooms at south west and North west which are good

For an East facing house,gate and car porch should come at North half.Here car porch comes at South.I do not understand why a passage is given from car porch to house

Even though bed room sizes are quite big,two bed rooms sharing one toilet with two separate doors  is simply foolish and ridiculous.You could have added Dress and Toilet even by reducing Bed room dimensions thereby giving more utility to bed space

Lot of space is simply wasted and there is not enough space where it really require

I do not know why you require a stair from inside for a single floor house

Rest of the comments I can make after a site visit.

Clay tiles  for floor and Hollow Blocks


Dear Thomas:

Happened to read your excellent informative blog and had questions -  Clay Tiles and Clay hollow bricks.
I am yet to start my house construction. I live in Tripunithura.

Clay Tile Flooring
I was thinking about clay tiles for flooring and many folks discouraged me(same story - fungus, slippery etc). But after reading your blog, have some confidence.
In this page, I liked the 2nd picture flooring. Is that clay tiles too? 

Hollow bricks:

Planned to do hollow bricks for my walls. Got discouraged when my  contractor said anyone, especially robbers, can easily slit through exposed hollow bricks. Is this true?
Actually I was thinking of using hollow bricks and then plastering both sides. Would I still get the benefit of heat reduction if I use plastering ?
Also can I can cut down time as well as cement usage if I use clay hollow bricks instead of traditional bricks?

If you can please give more details on following or provide a contact person and number, that would be helpful.

I would like to get more details on pricing and transportation etc..
I live in Tripunithura and from where can I get these tiles and hollow bricks?  From Trichur, I guess?

What is cost per sf? What could be final cost(approximate) per s f including additional works required (acid wash, urethane etc.).
Also are skilled workers available? where are they located?

Hollow bricks:
My engineer says I need 20 inch walls. That said, what type of hollow bricks do I need? I also need roofing bricks.
Please give an idea of cost per block, transportation cost and details, availability, how soon you can ship to Tripunithura etc. After how many days can I get the bricks?

Please provide details or a contact person with number.


My reply

Clay tiles do not get fungus after proper polishing.Clay tiles laid on my office  flat roof eight years back are still without any fungus.Clay tiles are not slippery like ceramic or vitrified tiles

What you have indicated are Kurudy clay tiles used for  construction of walls and even as filler for roof concrete.There is no harm in it having hollow inside and no thief can open it easily.You can use these blocks or solid /hollow concrete blocks for construction of wall.Semi wire cut bricks though costly are better for construction of walls from the point of strength

Heat inside house can be reduced by better design by a well qualified experienced Architect who can design a house with better ventilation and easy flow of light and wind

Cost of tiles will have to be checked up with manufacturer/supplier

No body uses 20 inches wall for house construction.For load bearing walls 20 cm thickness is sufficient.For partition walls,10 cm walls can be used

Building Permit


Hello Mr. Thomas.

Thanks for allowing me to post a question. I am constructing a home in Kothamangalam that comes under Panchayat area. My home is just less than 3000 sq.ft. I am building only one floor and has some plans to build upstairs for rental in the future. So my questions are -

1) Do I get a separate building number for my upstairs unit? The stair case has direct access from outside as well as from the ground floor unit.

2) My Architect says that I need to leave 4 ft width for my stair case as per new regulations in cochin area (he is from cochin) when I make that as a passage to the rental unit. so he think it might get extended to panchayat sooner. But I am not happy giving almost 8 ft for stair case room. Do you think this will be an issue for me in the future?

3) If I don't get a separate number, then I don't need to worry about the staircase width rite? I don't need to give any approvals to rent out my upstairs unit if its part of same building number. Does it has any difficulty in getting a separate electricity connection and all?

4) If I get 2 building number for the same building, will I be avoiding the luxury tax (3000 sq.ft+)? <3000 for first unit and ~1000 sq.ft. for upstairs unit.

Please provide your valuable suggestions.


My reply

1.You can get a separate building no for upstairs if that is an independent dwelling unit.You will have to show ground and upper floors as separate dwelling units in completion plan or simply inform Panchayath accordingly if your house s under construction are in panchayath area

2.Outside stair can be kept in clearance space as per building rules and hence you do not have to leave extra space for it.

3.If you get a separate building no for both floors,you can get separate Electric connections

4.When you have two building no's panchayath tax will be less for both house units

House construction work after plastering(Interior works)


Dear Sir,

My house construction is going on in Changanacherry,Kottayam( dist.)now the plastering of walls is going on,this is a 2 storey building,I would like you to do interior design including kitchen and bed room cabinets,wardrobes etc.,please clarify the details you need from my side

hope to see an early reply


Krishna Kumar

My reply

We can take complete Interior work for the house which include following

1.Plumbing work with expert workers from Cochin with latest technology inputs

2.Electrical wiring again with our expert workers

3.Putty work before painting

4.Enamel painting/polishing/wall painting

5.Interior wood work like modular Kitchen,cupboards etc.

6.Furniture work with hand carving if required

7.Flooring and toilet wall/floor tile laying with latest trend designs/patterns

8.Landscaping work and any other related work

It will be beneficial to you if I can visit site,take measurements,assess work already done and suggest improvements and check vasthu compliance

Please send me plan of your house in pdf  clearly marking directions and positions of roads

Right now we are doing similar work for another house at Changanassery for which work up to plastering was done by somebody else.Plumbing work is in progress there

Wednesday, June 8, 2011

House Construction in Kerala-Queries and replies



Dear sir,
I want to build a single story house consisting 100 Sq.ft. in Harippad Kerala. Please let me know approximate amount will be incurred only for building

My reply

For building a house first step is preparation of plan of house.Then using Engineering estimate method it will be possible to get approximate indication of cost

There is nothing like a square feet cost of construction.I have written a lot on this in my blogs.Read more

Assistance for  Project work


Hello Thomas Viruvelil sir,

I am into my 5th year, B.Arch and I am a student from SPA Hyderabad.

Your work is interesting and of great help.

I am greatly interested to work on a Heritage Hotel, and I am doing my prelim. studies on this subject. It would be of GREAT help to me, to have valuable inputs from you regarding this.

I am so interested to know if there are similar projects to work on and study; and to have a nice experience,of the subject.

I am in search of "suitable" buildings "old and traditional" which fit into the slot to develop through an adaptive reuse. Had gone through the GOVT.rules about classification of Heritage hotels, and realised I need to have a building aged before 1935 or so for a project like this.Hope that you guys could help me with this aspect at the earliest.

The other topic I have in my mind is a "Heritage Homestay" for the tourists. It would be nice if you help me out with possible sites and which are suitable for such a development. And even more helpful if i could get some inputs about any old homes or palaces that are going to be renewed or converted to hotels. :)

I wish to have some valuable inputs regarding this.
Waiting for a positive response.

Nikhil Dev VN
5th yr.B.Arch. SPA JNAFAU HYD

My reply

It will be better and more meaningful if you can visit Cochin for effective interaction with me and  during the visit I can suggest buildings that can meet your interest for specific study

Assessing soil condition


Dear Mr. Viruvelil Hormise Thomas

My name is Gino Itty George. I am currently designing a house in Thottackadu, Karuckachal, Kottayam. My client wasn't able to procure sufficient details of the site and I am a bit worried. What would be the soil condition of that place? He says he has rubber plantation nearby. Will the site have Laterite soil or Alluvial soil? And in each case what type of foundation would be applicable?

Waiting for your reply.


My reply

I need to visit site to give you  my assessment on the site conditions

Info On Mankara,Palakkad


Geenius.a  has sent you a link to a blog:

sir,thank you 4 your info.can u kindly give some information about mankara a small village in Palakkad.

Blog:  Kerala
Post:  Kerala Architecture

My reply

I have not visited Mankara and hence I am not familiar with the place

What is special significance of Mankara as far as Kerala Architecture is concerned?

House modification and interior work at Cochin


Dear Thomas,

I am Jos John, your classmate in Trichur Engineering  college. During the year 89 we met each other when you came to o/e/n Mulanthuruthy when I was working there. Now, I am working in Doha and coming for one month vacation From June 29. I require some modifications and interiors after checking the Vasthu of the house and quotation  to do the job. Now, it is locked and nobody is staying there. Please reply.

Jos J Athanikkal.

Senior Project Manager(E & I)

GALFARAl Misnad Engg., & Contg., WLL.
Doha, Qatar.

My reply

I have to visit site before I can comment on what can be done on the house to improve utility and appearance of the house

New house construction at Trichur


Dear Mr Thomas:

Please accept my compliments for the great service you render to people like me with no knowledge or experience in building homes.

We have a plot of land admeasuring 5 cents near Trichur (Kerala). We wish to construct a single-storied house (with foundation strong enough for another floor in future) admeasuring around 1,000 sq. ft. or so - 2 BHK) at an estimated all-inclusive cost of Rs 10-11 lakh at 2011 prices.

I will appreciate it if you kindly let me have a couple of suitable designs with dimensions, features and cost (where applicable) at your early convenience and oblige.

Thanking you and with best regards

Dr KSB Nayar, Ahmedabad

My reply

Design for your house has to be specifically designed to meet your plot conditions ,requirements and budget

Any other plan of the house prepared for somebody else may not suit you.I prefer to visit site and discuss with you in detail on your needs for the house before attempting to design your house