Step-by-Step Construction Guide for First-Time Home Owners

Building your own house isn’t something you can take lightly and get done with easily. A lot of time, money and effort goes into this project and you really can’t afford to make mistakes. To prevent you from making mistakes and making sure your home construction project goes as smoothly as it can, we have curated a complete construction guide for you.

Do Your Homework

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It is always great to do your homework for anything and everything you do. Talk to a few or more people who have already constructed their house. Ask them for tips, advise and what they could have done differently to make it an easier and more smooth process. Talking to someone who has experienced roadblocks and overcome them will also be of great help.

Site Selection

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When you are trying to pin down a site for your home construction you have to keep four things in mind – location, site orientation, road width and soil condition. The deal with the location is that you need to calculate the proximity to your area from grocery & medical stores, hospitals, schools and bazaars for obvious reasons. Site orientations come in four options – West facing, East facing, North facing and South facing properties. North & East are always preferred and hence are 10% more expensive than the other two. You also have to choose between whether you want an intermediate site or a corner site. The advantage of having a corner site is that you get tons of natural light and ventilation, the drawback is that they are 15-25% more expensive than the intermediate ones. When it comes to road width, wider the roads the better due to its better storm water drains. Lastly, as soil has a major impact on construction, it is necessary to get a soil test done. The softer the soil the better the foundation.

Post-Site Selection

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Once you have selected your site you need to visualize and conceptualize your house plan. Get the whole family together, brainstorm and finalize the idea of your plan. The more time spent at this stage the better. Visualize your lifestyle and forecast your future needs in order to conceptualize your house design and know exactly what you would require before you meet the architects. For instance, if you have guests coming over often you might want to consider having two living rooms – formal and informal, and also having a washroom to avoid guests barging into your bedrooms and invading your privacy. If you have a 24/7 help from a maid or a drive, you might want a servant room. You should also consider additional rooms if you have elderly staying with you or planning on moving in soon. You should also think about recreational spaces for gardening, play area or prayer rooms. Make sure you stick to the building bylaws as the benefits of it are crucial to your construction. It not only makes construction hassle-free but also is safer on long term basis.

Why is an Expert Team Important?

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The most crucial part of the stage is to hire experts to get the job done. Architects, designers, contractors and the others play a major role in the construction of your home and it is wise to choose the best. When you choose Housejoy, you not only pick experts in their respective fields but you also get the entire team together. You don’t have to hunt down each one individually, you just have to book the service and you will have a qualified team of experts at your service. An architect helps you design your dream home keeping all your needs and budget requirements in mind. As everyone on the team needs to be in sync it is important to pick a team that sticks together in order to not have communication gaps or run around contacting every single one of them. With Housejoy you will have a single point of contact, i.e. your Relationship Manager. All queries and updates can be cleared via your relationship manager.

Design Process

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This stage is where your ideas, dreams and needs are thrown on to a design plan. You have to be very clear and strict when it comes to your budget and what you need most importantly. You have to closely work with your architect and designer to make sure the design plans are going in sync with your dream. Go through the plan thoroughly before freezing it. Making changes later on can affect your cost – so be sure of it once you finalize your design. After the design is finalized you need to finalize on your materials and what kind of materials you need.

Things to Keep In Mind While Designing

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  • Design a home that’s user-friendly and easy on maintenance
  • Plan your plug points right (more points, as many as you need)
  • Make sure you have large windows for light to pass through to have a home that is as bright as the outdoors
  • Always have one entry and another exit door (balcony doors excluded)
  • Spacious bedrooms, bathrooms and/or walk-in closets
  • If you have pets, consider having a garden
  • Rainwater harvesting

Budgeting Your Construction Project

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With the current trend, the construction cost can be estimated from Rs.1600/sqft to Rs.2500/sqft which usually includes the design, style, size, aesthetics, fittings, etc. This can be estimated only once your design is ready for planning. The expert team should begin with giving you preliminary design concepts which then moves on to concept drawings along with floor plans. To show your internal furniture arrangement, the team will have to propose a 2D interior layout and then a 3D elevation for the project. After that, have them give you a detailed BOQ for the project. A BOQ is a bill of quantities that includes the cost of materials, parts and labour along with the terms and conditions of the contract. When all of this is ready, they will have to give you a schedule of the project and detailed working drawings for project execution. There are also additional costs that you have to keep in mind – borewell drilling, plan sanctions, temporary electrical connection, electrical wiring works, solar water heaters, sanitary and water connections, rainwater harvesting and interiors. Always remember any last minute changes will result in additional costs, so make sure you consider and look into these changes thoroughly before you go through with them.

Payment and Project Schedule

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It is important to have a well-planned schedule to make sure you can track the progress and ask questions when there are any delays. Raw materials supply, vendor payments, dues by the client, selecting and purchasing materials well before schedules are a few things that can affect the construction schedule. When it comes to payment, you should work out a payment schedule based on the job to make sure you make payments only when the job/stage is completed.

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