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Posted by James in Springfield, IL on 5/29/2007

We started this journey in the fall of 2006. I got the idea that we could build a new home cheaper than buying one. Plus we could not find any that we liked.

We began looking for lots and doing research. I came across this site and The Owner-Builder Book early on. I gained a lot of valuable information from the book and this site. I have been a frequent lurker here on the site and decided it was time to start my construction journal.

In October of 2006 we purchased a beautiful 4-acre lot in Mechanicsburg, IL. The lot is mostly wooded with an area already cleared in the center. We wanted to get a way from town, we currently live in Springfield, IL and we both like the country. I am attaching pics of the lot. One of the photos is after an ice and snow storm; we wanted to capture the beauty.

We plan to break ground in September of 2007. We spent the winter planning, developing house plans (that we eventually drew ourselves), and designing our home. We have spent many hours shopping prices also. We are currently getting bids from all subs and will be getting that organized.

I must say this is a daunting task, but I am sure we will make out well. Both my wife Julia and myself like doing DIY home improvement around the house, so this will be challenging but fun. I do have some homebuilding experience and know many people in the industry.

Next steps - Continue getting bids from subs and on materials. Also start talking with the bank.

I will try to keep this updated, but as we get busier it may suffer.

Wish us luck.

Jim Cleaver

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