Build Your Own House

Construction Manager - Construction Consultant - Site Supervisor

Summary: A construction consultant, construction manager, or a site supervisor can help you build your own home.

Hello Carl,

I have a question concerning time and commitment when building your own home.

We are expecting our second child in just over a month and have decided that our current home will be too small for us and a potential third or forth child. We intend to build a bigger home now while land cost is somewhat affordable.

My question is how much time is needed to put towards a project this big, i.e. financing, finding and evaluating contractors and subcontractors.

I am wondering if it’s a project we can tackle now or wait until the babies are a little older. I'd rather not sacrifice an excessive amount of time from the family to tackle this job.
Thank you, J.O

Hi J.O.,

Building your own house is NOT for everyone. It does take a lot of your time. Your last sentence should be your guide.

However, if you want to minimize your time building your own house, hire a construction manager to find, hire, and supervise the subcontractors. I have a sample Manager’s/Supervisor’s contract on my Getting Started page under #9. It is a sample, so you may want to run it by an attorney you know to modify it.

You should expect to pay a good construction manager 6-10% of the total cost for their work. You still would be the General Contractor responsible for budget, plans, financing, shopping for materials, and estimating total cost, including the contractor labor that your construction manager plans to hire. Most of those chores can be done over a fairly long period of time.

Once construction starts, your construction manager takes the main load.

Review the information on Getting Started, talk to people including construction lenders, mortgage lenders, and always keep that last sentence of yours foremost in your mind. You can build a new home anytime.

If your financial situation allows, you could just buy the land now. Land (lot) loans are available. If you need one and can’t find one, let me know.

Good luck,

Carl Heldmann