The Millennial Man’s Guide to Affordable Home Building

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With the changing tides of the economy, and the popular growing with essentially no sign of stopping, it can sometimes seem like being able to build your own home is a distant dream that only our grandfathers and, perhaps to a lesser extent, our fathers had the luxury of making a reality. It can seem like there isn’t much room in the market, but there are always good locations lying in wait ready for you to build on with the property you’ve envisioned.

Whether you’re undertaking this journey on your own, or you’ve got a significant other to work on it with you, it’s quite doable if you have the right strategy. Here are some tips you can consider to build that home affordably.

Take the time to source out cheaper but reliable materials.

This doesn’t mean that you have to scrimp on things and sacrifice quality. It simply means taking the time to figure out options that fit your aesthetic goals, provide safety and reliability, and are within the budget. For instance, a good option to go with is engineered timber. It’s cheaper than solid wood, but it provides good durability and resistance while achieving the same look you want with wood anyway. Its breezy manufacturing process makes it that much easier to fit things into your set budget, as long as you’ve got a good supplier that won’t cheap out on crucial factors like the form, appearance, fire, and water-efficiency. This way, you get less waste production and cut down costs and still get a solid foundation.

Consider building a tiny home.

If it’s legal in the state you plan to build your home in, consider going small. An excess of space is not really necessary to live comfortably, and there has been a trend in tiny home builders because it is more affordable. It takes fewer materials upfront, and it can result in lower expenses with utilities and maintenance. On top of that, their increased energy efficiency makes them more sustainable in the long run. A study revealed the downsizing to a tiny house could reduce one’s ecological footprint by 45%.

Though this comes with its own set of challenges, it can be a worthy pursuit if you do it right.

interior of house under construction

Try out an open floor plan.

The open concept design has picked up speed in recent years, and industry insiders have released studies that show properties with open floor plans appreciating more than bigger, contemporary homes. If you’re building from scratch, it will also save you a lot of labour and materials if you nix the need for walls. Then, the space you have feels bigger and more inviting overall (as long as you use good design elements).

If you’re still concerned about the privacy that this provides when entertaining, you can always go semi-open and create some dividers as you please.

Select hero pieces and design around that.

You don’t have to go all-out from the beginning if you’re on a budget. The important part here is laying a solid foundation that you can build on over time. Make mindful choices that make room for things you want to add in the future and focus on the functionality of things first. Once you’ve got all the needs to be settled, you can start decorating by sticking to some highlight pieces that can take initial focus. That can inform how the rest of the room feels, and you can establish the mood of any space from there.

It’s also a good idea to prioritise the key elements of each room. What will be most used in the kitchen? What is a must in your own bathroom? Is anything missing in the living room? Go from there, and the additional details can fall into place later on.

Take on as many tasks as you can by yourself (wisely)

If you can build up the skills, use the right resources, and do your research so that everything is up to code, it can save you a lot of money to do as much of the building as you can yourself. You can even bring in some help from some friends and treat them out for their assistance. You’ll still want to confer with some contractors to make sure that your structure is architecturally sound, but if you take on the brunt of the work without outsourcing, it can significantly decrease how much you’re shelling out in the end. Going this route will take a lot of care, though, as missteps can lead to more headaches and repairs down the road.

If you can follow through on these steps, you can build yourself that home for your bachelor pad or future family.

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