Help me save money on an addition.

   / Help me save money on an addition. #1  

HawkinsHollow

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So we are starting the process of putting an addition on our house. By starting the process i mean preliminary plans, drawings, wish lists, etc. We hope to get the ball rolling and actually break ground late spring. The plan is to basically extending the side profile of the house out 20-25 feet. Right now our house is a 1000 sqft single level ranch style house and we are looking to add about 900 sqft of addition out the side. I plan on acting as the GC on this project to save money. I have done all sorts of building; from working on a framing crew building an entire house, to kitchen remodels, to huge covered decks, to building cabinets, bathrooms, to building my 25x27 shop almost single handedly. So I have done just about everything. That being said, I realize I cannot do this entire project myself if I want to maintain a shred of sanity. But I need to figure out ways to cut costs and keep things within our budget.

My wife and I both love the wood, stone, rustic aesthetic; but contractor friends have told me this will increase the sqft price significantly. But done right you can still have that look and not break the bank.

My questions are:

#1
What are ways we can save on this addition? Shorts cuts? I wish I would haves? Don't let this guy screw you by... I want to hear the good, the bad and the ugly!

#2
What things can I start stockpiling now to make the sticker shock more manageable? I have friends with sawmills. I am a FB marketplace addict. I have the space to store large quantities of materials. What should I be looking for?

#3 I have lots of skills and tools. How can I best use them to my advantage?

Anyways, this is a very preliminary post. Can't wait to hear what y'all have to say.
 
   / Help me save money on an addition. #2  
I think the saying goes that each step in the planning phase saves ten steps in the execution phase.

Simplify.

Maybe take time to scour the for sale ads for materials you can save money on.

Put your own skills to work. Maybe use the crews to get you a enclosed space that you can finish out on your own schedule.
 
   / Help me save money on an addition. #3  
What's going in the addition? Bedroom / bath, or family space? If you have the skills, do it yourself, not just GC it.
 
   / Help me save money on an addition.
  • Thread Starter
#4  
What's going in the addition? Bedroom / bath, or family space? If you have the skills, do it yourself, not just GC it.
A new master bedroom and bath, new kitchen, redo old bathroom and a 1/2 bath, extended screen porch. It's a lot! I am a teacher so the goal it to get things rolling so I can hit the ground running and work all summer on it but that is not going to finish it. I will need help to do it in a reasonable amount of time. And I suck at drywall, I can't lay block, etc. There is no way I can do it all myself, but if I get help on the big stuff I can save tons of money on the little stuff.
 
   / Help me save money on an addition. #5  
A new master bedroom and bath, new kitchen, redo old bathroom and a 1/2 bath, extended screen porch. It's a lot! I am a teacher so the goal it to get things rolling so I can hit the ground running and work all summer on it but that is not going to finish it. I will need help to do it in a reasonable amount of time. And I suck at drywall, I can't lay block, etc. There is no way I can do it all myself, but if I get help on the big stuff I can save tons of money on the little stuff.
I normally sub out the concrete work, do most of the rest depending upon time and costs. Somethings cheaper to sub out, like insulation. Drywall does suck, although I did some of mine.
 
   / Help me save money on an addition. #6  
#2
What things can I start stockpiling now to make the sticker shock more manageable? I have friends with sawmills. I am a FB marketplace addict. I have the space to store large quantities of materials. What should I be looking for?
Right now coffee and notes on price of everything you may possibly need.

IF we have the predicted financial crash that many are predicting prices should plummet. So unless you anticipate an increase in price stockpiling doe not make sense.

BUT for right now you need to look to find a history of prices so you can tell if what you are buying is a really good price for the item you need before you stockpile it.
Is the 900 sq ft going to need:
Windows
Doors
Bath
Plumbing
Wiring etc. etc,

Research everything you plan on needing plus some alternatives.

For example, my wife and I bought a place that had a 24'x30' room ideally suited for a library to store our collection of books. She started buying bookcases (24" wide 5 shelf) at over $500@. I found bookcases at an auction, that basically did the 30' dimension 3 times, for a total of $800. But I had to buy them on short notice and be sure they were good.

About January of 2020 I "stocked up" on a good sale of 4x4's and 2x4's, bought about 30. Didn't realize price was going to sky rocket. Was able to do many small projects during Covid with 2x4's I paid < $2@ . The price when I used them was about $8@.

Good luck.
 
   / Help me save money on an addition. #7  
Do you have electric miter saw,table saw,pneumatic nailer(s),compressor,10 guage extension cord(s), shop fan,spare trash cans,push broom and work lights? If short one or more it might pay to get tips on bang for the buck. Here comes one already. Old Kirby vacs have larger motors than ordinary shop vacs and can be found for $20 in garage sales. I have one on a cart with car wash supplies,one aapted to canister vac for woodworking machines and one I use conventionally to clean shop floor.
I appreciate real wood over engineered floor so I watched for small batches for pennies on the dollar in clearance isle where people returned overage from their projects. I've had compliments on one of a kind mixed Oak and Hickory flooring from Anderson and Hearne Hardwoods. I bought same thickness but t&g interlock didn't always match. I used router table to transition between profiles. That is to say I put my male profile on one piece,female on other piece then continued from there with factory profile until next profile.
 
   / Help me save money on an addition. #8  
I had my gc use me as labor. I have skills but I'm far from the master that my gc is. He and i worked side by side to build my shop, and I learned a lot. And I saved a lot in labor being his helper instead of someone else. I said what I want to do, he knew how to do it, and we did it. There's a lot of little stuff you don't think about when building a building.
 
   / Help me save money on an addition. #9  
I had my gc use me as labor. I have skills but I'm far from the master that my gc is. He and i worked side by side to build my shop, and I learned a lot. And I saved a lot in labor being his helper instead of someone else. I said what I want to do, he knew how to do it, and we did it. There's a lot of little stuff you don't think about when building a building.

I'm surprised your GC was open to this, but it sounds like a great idea. Anything special in how you approached it/suggested the idea?
 
   / Help me save money on an addition.
  • Thread Starter
#10  
Some great advice here gentlemen, thank you!
@newbury that is what I am going to do start putting prices of things we need down so I have a reference and I can watch the market on those things.

Keep it coming!!
 
 
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