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Jim's Forum Posts: 4
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By Jim in Shawnee, KS on 9/27/2006


This is the first of probably many posts to come.  I am in the process of finding plans for my future house I will be the GC for.  I will be doing some work myself because I can and want to.  My question to others who have taken on the challenge is about how much does it cost to build per square foot?  I am trying to find the right size house and the right house plans.  I would like to know an average number to easily plug into the sq footage of the house.  I know there are several variables, but I don't have the money to spend $800 plus on house plans then get the bids from subs to get an exact number.  Then to find out I can't afford to build it.  If anyone could help I would appreciate it.

 

JM


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By Mike & Carolyn in Smithville, MO on 1/13/2007


Jim, you may already have your answer but sending anyway.  I am a new homes realtor in the Kansas City area.  New construction through a builder and realtor runs on average $100 - $110 per sq ft for standard features.  Upgrades to what we call luxury finishes, more wood flooring, granite counter tops, more tile and large baths increase the per sq ft cost.  I am in the process of undertaking an owner build and hope to be able to build for $75 to $80 per sq ft.  I am in the process of getting bids now and can tell more as they come in.  Most of the costs are a bit of a shock as we've spent nearly 10k without breaking ground on the structure yet... there are many upfront permit and utility costs that builder/developers have built into the cost of the land and build they sell you... when you do it yourself... you pay these yourself.  In the long run we hope to come out ahead.  On purchasing a plan, you can probably have a local architect work with you to get exactly what you need.  I'm not sure about Kansas but in Mo. we have to have everything engineered for local loads and code so the plan I purchased had to be redrawn to incorporate some changes we wanted and the engineers would not work with it until it was done.  If you have run across any good subs in the area please share them and I will do the same.


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By Jennifer in Overland Park, KS on 3/5/2007


Who did you go through to have your plans redrawn.  We are planning to be GC.  We are building a steel home and need someone to draw in the intior of our home.  I don't think we need an architect since the engeneering is already done.  I understand architects are really expensive.  I would rather go with a designer.  Any thoughts?

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By Mike in Topeka, KS on 9/25/2008


Mike and Carolyn,

Have you completed your house yet? I am in the process of building in Auburn, KS outside of Topeka. What type of cost did you come up with, also do you have a list of some recommended contractors from your area?

Thanks,

Mike


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By Mike & Carolyn in Smithville, MO on 9/26/2008


Hi Mike,

We are still working on our project.  We will be for a very long time.  We are actually building two complete homes.  See Homestead blog. The first one, our guest house or carriage house, is almost finished.  The plan is to be complete by November 1. We won’t even start the second one until next spring at the earliest and with the current economic situation it may be a few years from now.  We are doing a cash build which slows things down a bit. No cash, no forward progression.  I have not added things recently to figure the cost per foot so I don’t have a final number but from the last check it looked like we would be coming in at $85/finished square foot.  This is higher than I wanted but it does cost more per square foot to build small, and the carriage house is small.  Plus we have the up front infrastructure expenses in this figure for the main electric, water and sewer hook ups.  Add to this that we are building in the middle of 12 acres and there are extra costs for the long runs. And I did go with 100% hardwood floors, foam insulation, granite countertops a few retaining walls and were required to completely sheet rock the garage with 5/8” rock… Regardless, it is what it is!  We will post to the blog our final number.

On subs... let me know what you are looking for.  Some may go that far but most may not due to the cost of gas.  My framer is no longer working, his number is posted in the blog but he changed careers until the building industry turns around. Most of the others were picked up from new home communities around my location. Just drive through and get the numbers off the trucks of talk to the guys working on the new homes.  -- Carolyn


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By Trisha in Topeka, KS on 6/14/2009


Mike-

We are planning the building of a 3,400 sq ft home at Lake Perry.  We have found the plan to fit the lot and are ready to begin the planning and designing process.  Just curious if you had any leads on good subs?  We have purchased the land and hope to build within the next year or two.  Any information you may have would be helpful and appreciated!


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By Mark in Auburn, KS on 6/15/2009


Hi Trisha,

I wanted to give you a couple of names for subs. I have been in the Topeka area for most of my life and I know these people personally. M. Schreiner & Sons (246-1130) can take care of you concrete needs. They've been in the business 30 years that I know of, and they are based North of Topeka not too far from Lake Perry which will be a plus for you. I can't say for sure that they would be the absolute cheapest bid you might get, but I know they are good people and they know what they are doing. For your excavation you can try Todd Schreiner (286-2725). He is related to the concrete boys and another nice guy. He will be very up front with you do a good job for you. They are both in the phone book if you want to look them up for yourself.  I give you these names because I know they are not looking to cheat you or trick you into overages. You can trust them. Tell them Mark in Auburn gave you their names.

Good luck,

Mark


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By Mike in Topeka, KS on 6/25/2009


Trisha, I have a complete list of subs that I am using. P.M. me, and I'll send it to you.

Mike

 


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By Mike in Topeka, KS on 7/1/2009


Trisha,

Below is a list of subs that are from the Topeka Area.

  Name Number
Excavator Dean Brown 785-224-3306
Septic AZ Septic  - Randy Murray 785-286-2945
Foundation - Concrete Gold Star Concrete - Larry Law 785-273-3129
Framer/Siding Mike Drippe Construction 785-207-5888
Roofer Gardner Roofing - Jim
(785) 228-0088?
Plumber D&J Plumbing- Dave 785-224-8046
Electrical M&M - Tim 785-640-1290
HVAC Modern Air - Les Brandt 785-232-1174
Insulation    
Drywall Brobst Drywall Rob Brost 785-845-4796
Stone Canyon Stone - Kay Owens canyonstones.com
Interior Trim - Cabinets Mike Drippe Construction 785-207-5888
     
Framing Material St. Mary's Lumber
(785) 437-2268?
     
     


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By Trisha in Topeka, KS on 7/9/2009


Mike-

Thank you for the leads!!  Now have you used all of these subs?  I so appreciate your time putting the list together.  I look forward to getting the "ball rolling"!  Our goal is to have all/most of the planning completed before we break ground... as (an attempt) to prevent add'l./unforeseen costs and for a little peace of mind going into it!  Did you have someone design or redesign you plans?  I've heard to go to Wehlans in Topeka and have them redesign.


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By Mike in Topeka, KS on 1/3/2010


Jim have you started to build yet? I am just about to finish up in Auburn, KS. I can get you some good figures.

Mike


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By Jim in Shawnee, KS on 1/13/2010


Yes, I finished and was able to move in Dec., 2007.  Interior was completed around Spring, 2008.  It was a tiring experience, but now that some time has past I would definitely do it again and am somewhat saddened by the thought of not getting another chance to do so.  We plan on retiring in this house, but who really can tell if that will be the case?  How was your experience?
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