From $9.95


Total: 32,904
Visited Last 30 days: 214
Forum Messages
Total: 20,966
Last 30 days: 7
Forum Evaluations
Total: 24,160
Last 30 days: 0
Journal Entries
Total: 5,400
Last 30 days: 9
Total: 15,247
Last 30 days: 4
Total: 87,197


10 Visits | 1 Posts | 2 Pix | 0 Videos
Tenants-Right-When-S... Maryland, MD
590 Visits | 5 Posts | 4 Pix | 0 Videos
furnacerepairon St Catharines, AL
31 Visits | 1 Posts | 9 Pix | 0 Videos
furnacemkm Markham, AL
33 Visits | 1 Posts | 7 Pix | 0 Videos
vallejocleaningservi... Vallejo , CA
30 Visits | 1 Posts | 1 Pix | 0 Videos
getpestcontrol Delhi, AL
35 Visits | 1 Posts | 1 Pix | 0 Videos
noithattrieugia tphcm, AL
51 Visits | 1 Posts | 0 Pix | 0 Videos
119 Visits | 1 Posts | 0 Pix | 0 Videos
Packers-and-Movers Delhi, AL
378 Visits | 2 Posts | 1 Pix | 0 Videos
Best-Access-Doors Jackson, AL
167 Visits | 1 Posts | 0 Pix | 0 Videos
229 Visits | 2 Posts | 0 Pix | 0 Videos
bird Springfield, MO
168 Visits | 1 Posts | 0 Pix | 0 Videos
Tanglewood Colorado Springs, CO
120,398 Visits | 1,004 Posts | 2,581 Pix | 47 Videos
244 Visits | 1 Posts | 0 Pix | 0 Videos
280 Visits | 1 Posts | 0 Pix | 0 Videos
Magic-Of-The-SideSto... San Carlos, CA
605 Visits | 2 Posts | 2 Pix | 0 Videos
httpswwwfaxitfastcom... salt lake city, AL
252 Visits | 1 Posts | 0 Pix | 0 Videos
Owning-My-First-Prop... Grand Rapids, MI
361 Visits | 1 Posts | 0 Pix | 0 Videos
movers-and-packers Hyderabad, AL
351 Visits | 1 Posts | 1 Pix | 0 Videos
Investment-Propertie... Rochester, MN
402 Visits | 1 Posts | 0 Pix | 0 Videos
See all journals...

Current Top-Rated Posters

Lance in Buena Vista, CO0.002

I have started the "wish list" of features that we want in our O-B house. I would like to break ground next spring if possible. Love the website and book. Looking forward to many discussions.
Todd in Tullahoma, TN

Try one of our new Construction Bargain Strategies for free. Coupon code: CBS. One strategy could save you $1,000 or $10,000 or maybe $50,000 when you build or remodel.

    2-1. Start early. - Electronic Edition

    2-1. Start early. - Electronic Edition
List Price: $1.99
Our Price:
You Save: $1.00 (50%)
Word Count: 11,639

Add to cart

     The earlier you start your planning, the more bargains and ideas you find to make a better house. If you start just a month before, you never see the problems or opportunities that begin to emerge after two or three or six months of thought. Your house is built before you even see the key issues.

     Suppose you start a month before groundbreaking and just come out with a budget and schedule at the end of that month. Then you have to go with it. But we recommend working and adjusting the budget many times over several months, even a year, before you start to build.

     Some bargains take time to shape up, like special seasonal prices on house materials. How do you know what the seasonal prices are until you’ve checked them over time?

This book has numerous helpful strategies you can’t use unless you start early. For instance:

• Your permit-issuing municipality may have annual budgeting process and specific seasons of applications that you have to wait for.

• It just flat takes a year to squeeze in 1,000 hours of planning, and what an adventure! O-B’s in a hurry usually “leave money on the table”.

• One strategy for manageable landscaping suggests hauling in free soil amendments to prepare beds for planting. If you can do it the season before you build, the amendments compost in place. Good soil is ready for use when you are.

• One CBS is “Talk to people, express your needs.” It takes a while to make relationships and chase down their ideas. Many bargains you discover are seasonal, and you need to let the calendar go round to prepare and pounce on some of them. Say you get on a notification list with a freight liquidator for appliances or doors, or woodwork – it takes a while to get a find that matches up to your needs.

• “Price out alternative approaches.” We’ve observed that this often doesn’t happen in spite of best O-B intentions, because one don’t even have enough time to flesh out the base case. An O-B interested in alternative construction technologies, like ICF or SIP in lieu of conventional framing never gets the facts rooted out before deadline pressure necessitates the “standard” choice.

• Our advice to “Read a lot.” is usually given short shrift. Opportunities to understand the background are missed as time must be devoted to specific tasks in front of us. “Out of the box” thinking is lost.

• Checking the seasonality of prices. The National Retail Federation, a trade group based in Washington, D.C., offers this calendar to help consumers look for retail promotions and bargains:

January — end-of-season fall merchandise, home goods from linens to cookware and furniture.
February — Valentine’s Day, with promotions of jewelry, fragrances and other gifts.
March — summer merchandise arrives, brides begin registering for summer weddings.
April — spring fashion markdowns begin.
May — Mother’s Day promotions, sales of athletic apparel and athletic shoes.
June and July — Father’s Day promotions, summer clearance sales.
August — back-to-school bargains.
September and October — discounts on coats, gloves and scarves.
November — pre-Thanksgiving markdowns ahead of the Thanksgiving weekend rush.
December — holiday discounts on apparel and appliances.

     In like manner, there is a seasonality to construction materials. Study the principal materials you need and see when they rise and fall. Typically, when new building permits drop, so does lumber. You can call the building department in the jurisdiction where you are building to check numbers of permits issued. You can’t track this if you don’t start early.

• Say you want to take a class as O-B Bob B. is doing – one in PEX plumbing, and one in ICF for his fourth O-B house.
Classes take time to schedule and months to complete. Preparation to save money building – whether or not through DIY – takes time for a first time owner-builder.

• Another strategy that reflects a lot of owner-builder interest is to use IKEA cabinets. IKEA offers a little-known sale pointed out by an alert reader. But it’s only once a year or so.

• Many owner-builders pick up “open box buys” or floor model discounts on high-end appliances. These opportunities may come up once a year or less. If you’re not in the stream well ahead of time, you miss savings like these.

     My newspaper today had this headline: “Utah Jazz fall to Lakers due to slow start”. I saw that game. The Jazz fell 26 points behind in the first half, and lost the game by six points. If only… Unfortunately, when I built, I only started in earnest a few months ahead of time. I left something on the table, as a result. Like most owner-builders, I think, “Next time I’ll start sooner...”

Other customers who purchased this also purchased:

    3-26. Check your statements. - Electronic Edition
Special Report 05: Interviews with plumbers - Electronic Edition
    11-32. Get a big propane tank. - Electronic Edition
    5-1. Home show discounts - Electronic Edition
    7-21. Buy contractor returns. - Electronic Edition
    7-27. Culled lumber - Electronic Edition
    12-10. Reduce heating and cooling bills with ICF. - Electronic Edition
    5-34. Use "unlimited long distance" to contact banks and vendors. - Electronic Edition
Ten Commandments of Owner-Builders II. "Written List of Features" on MP4 enhanced
    5-29. Shop distributor supply houses. - Electronic Edition
Copyright 1997-2020 Consensus Group Inc.