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SIP home advice/tips?


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Myleen's Forum Posts: 36
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By Myleen in Austin, TX on 10/25/2007


We are building with SIPs, and would like to hear from people who are doing the same and are owner-builders. What has been your experience? Can you offer any advice or tips when dealing with subs? Most of the subs we talk to don't even know what that is. I also have a detailed blog for you to see. Check out: sjodindreamhome.blogspot.com


We are at the planning/budget stage and all our houseplans are done.

We are hoping to break ground next month!

Thanks,

Myleen

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By Aaron in Riverton, WY on 1/9/2008


Hi Myleen,

We are in the same place as you... planning. It is my hope to use SIP's, but I talked with the Insulspan guy yesterday and his prices floored me. One stock house design that they produce was $40 per foot! That is too much for the outer shell in my opinion. Who did you go with?

Thanks,

Aaron


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By Martin in Orem, UT on 1/11/2008


We also have spoken with Insulspan and the prices seemed high, though not as high as $40/ft--more like $20. Their cost included installation, however, which must also include flying a crew out to our site for the one to two weeks. We are getting quotes from other companies now and the quotes we have gotten for EPS panels are much cheaper (<$10/ft of exterior walls). We talked with a Tom Ryles of Premier Building Systems in their Montana office for that quote. He was extremely helpful. The price included freight on a wall and roof panel system, but didn't touch on installation.

Although EPS is cheaper, we are still considering PUR as our first choice. We are waiting on the other companies' quotes. We are looking at Murus, Winter Panels, and Better Building Products. Murus seems to have a lot of promise as far as communication and services, although I haven't gotten the quote yet.

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By Dale in Richland, AZ on 1/12/2008


I don't know how some one is coming up with $40/sf for panels. I can get panels for $6/sf plus frieght out of New Mexico. And they'll ship to most of the west.

It takes considerably less time to build with panels, if you design around the material rather than just converting a stick frame plan.

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By Pat in Arnold, CA on 1/12/2008


Our quote from Insulspan came in at around $12/sq foot (we have 3,000 sq ft house under roof). That does not include installation, which we will hire out ourselves locally. However, maybe we got a special deal because we had to use Insulspan because it's a package deal with our timberframe. Maybe the timberframe company does such a high volume with them that they get special pricing.
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By Aaron in Riverton, WY on 1/12/2008


Hey Dale,

$40/sq. ft. of HOUSE, not sq. ft. of panel. Insulspan's stock house of 1,700+ ft was quoted to me at $70K. $70K/1700=$40 per sq. ft.

Aaron


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By Kenneth in Lees Summit, MO on 1/13/2008


You are trying to compare apples to oranges to grapefruit, and your comparisons are not valid. You are trying to compare $40/s.f. to $6/s.f. to $10/s.f. to $20/s.f. to who knows what all other figures have been tossed in here. Can we agree on at least one thing - you pay for your panels by square foot of panel, and you pay for your installation also probably by square foot of panel.

Dale is quoting without installation, materials only and he has indicated that so he has valid figures to compare to. Please when quoting, indicate how many square feet of panels, and whether this includes installation. This way we can make valid comparisons as to "reasonableness" of cost as well as comparisons with other materials such as stick-framing or ICF.


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By Myleen in Austin, TX on 2/4/2008


Oh my gosh, that sounds like a lot. Did you use a stock floor plan or was it designed with SIPs in mind? That can definitely affect the price if they are also designing your plans. Let me know, because I know of an excellent SIP designer (Ted Mengers with Pyranak Design Group).

Also, check with the following companies for panel prices (the first two gave me the best prices):
sips-chapman.com
sipsteamusa.com

Please come and see my blog on the progress of my SIP home:
sjodindreamhome.blogspot.com

And other posts on here about why I like SIPs! :-)

Good luck and write me if you have any questions.

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Jedon's Forum Posts: 23
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By Jedon in Nevada City, CA on 2/7/2008


I'm building a custom SIP house and here is what I found about pricing.

There are 3 stages of panels:
1. Raw panels from the factory $4.25/SF for 6" + shipping etc. Mine came to $16K for 3,120 SF of panel (not house, the house is 2,680 SF).
2. Cut and scooped: they make the special cuts and scoops that cannot be done by the factory. This ran me another $5,600.
3. Ready to Install: All windows and doors framed out, no cutting in the field. This is another $4,900.

They gave me the option to order them at any stage. I chose ready-to-install for a total of $26,593 or $8.52 per SF of SIP wall, $9.92 per SF of house. This does not include the roof, floors, interior walls etc., just the outside walls. The panels are from R-Control.

Hope this helps!

-Jedon

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By DCG in Lago Vista, TX on 6/23/2008


SIPs are great, but be sure you know to compare apples to apples when going vs. stick.

Installation costs are typically higher, SIPs require more specialized labor and usually rental equipment.

Make sure you get the cost of trim in your bids for windows/door installation.

Consider the cost of the exterior covering/trim in addition to the SIP panel. Also not that some manufacturers won't warranty unless you can install into studs, which isn't possible with a SIP.

Other costs that need to be considered: the increase in bids on plumbing and electrical - you'll need to run conduit. It takes longer, more labor is involved.

The marketing hype is that SIPs are "slightly" more expensive than the cost of traditional stick frame plus insulation. And that might be true for exterior wall vs. exterior wall construction. Just be sure you do some analysis of "total cost" before you let someone sell you on a SIP solution that will impact your budget...

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