I thought I was done working on the house.

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It’s been a while since I have updated the blog.  Sorry…   Though our desire was to finish our owner build completely before we moved in, it did not happen that way.  Toward the end of building our home, we were in such a hurry to move in, we left a few unfinished projects.   The past few months we started working on completing them.  We had a fireplace mantel built, painted several rooms and installed a subway tile backsplash.     In the next few post I will go into more detail of each project.


The bigger the better.

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When building a house, finding the correct square footage that will complement your families lifestyle is important.   Once the house is built,  it is nearly impossible to change the square footage without building on.   In 2007, the size of the American home peaked at 2600 square feet.   In 1970, the average size home was around 1400 square feet.   The home that my grandparents  had built in the early 70’s, was about that size and had only  one bathroom.  They moved in it, when my mom was a teenager.  She has four siblings and it worked out fine.  Today, we would consider raising a family in a home that size as deprivation.    When we were designing our home,  our goal was not to exceed over 2600 Square feet. (more…)


Building a house for a $1000

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There are several reasons why many people set out to build their own home.   Some folks desire complete control over home building the  process.   For others it is purely motivated by finances.   For most owner builders it is a mixture of the two. 
Would we still have acted as the contractor if we had  not  saved a dime?  Probably not.   It is a nice feeling to finish your home and know that you have saved thousands of dollars.  If we had not acted as owner builders we would of probably been upside down on our home or we would had to forget about many upgrades.   (more…)


We Own it: Sea Gull Lighting Outdoor Pendant Fixture

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When it comes to picking out porch lighting, there are thousands of choices.  Being that we were building a new/old house, we wanted a porch light that reflected day’s gone by.  A porch light that would remind people of their childhood home. We drove through neighborhoods with old homes and noticed many of them had hanging porch lights that were simple but elegant.  We found a similar design from the lighting company Sea Gull.  We have been quiet please with it. (more…)


Staying Motivated

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When building your own home, it is easy to become unmotivated. There will be weeks, when everything seems to go wrong. It is like everything else in life, after working on your home for a period of time, the process can become very old. Be realistic with your goals. It takes time to build a house, especially if you are doing a lot of the work yourself. It took us exactly a year and we still have some little projects to finish. (more…)


We Own It: Frigidaire Gallery Series Microwave

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I remember when Microwaves was the rage. As a kid, I remember how it was so cool if your family owned a microwave. Today, microwaves are standard and pretty much have the same functions. So, when we started looking for a built in Microwave, we based our decision upon the brand and appearance. We liked the stainless steel look but (more…)


Is it worth it?

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In the last post, we spoke of what a owner builder is. As I mentioned, we did not do much of the manual labor but spent most of our time acting as the contractor. During building our home, I had to balance a job, wife, two kid’s and another one on the way. I went in to the building project with good intentions of doing a (more…)


What is a Owner Builder?

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To some  a owner builder,  is  someone who literally builds their own house.   My dad fits this definition.  When I was young, my dad built  our home.   He literally did about 90% of the work.  I remember us digging the foundation as a family.   Well, my sister and I mostly played. It took him three years. to complete our house.    (more…)


We Own It: Rinnai Tankless water heater

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Once we made the decision to install a tankless water heater in the home we were building, we had to decide which brand.   On the advice of a friend who has a tankless,  we began to research the Rinnai tankless water heater.  After comparing it to other models such as Bosch and Rheem, we decided to go with Rinnai. (more…)


Getting a takeoff on a lumber package.

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As a owner builder, one of the first  take off’s you will need to get is for the lumber package.   Most lumber yard’s will not charge you for this service.  I only had one that wanted to charge us and that was one of the big box stores.   You will submit your blueprints to the lumber yard and they will work up a bid for a lumber package.  This is a time consuming process for them, so be patient.   (more…)


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