Tips on Building a House

Sample image

If you are considering building your own house, then there are some tips and techniques that you should know about before you begin your project. Building a house will be the most major do-it-yourself project of your life, but it is also the one that is most rewarding upon completion. The average do-it-yourself homeowner can build her own house in 6 to 8 months, depending on the size of the project.

Permits and Inspections

Purchase required building permits. You can get permits approved at your city's main governmental office. Once procured, you will need to display them on the job site. An inspector will come by every so often to inspect the work; you will also need to phone the inspector after major steps of construction, such as framing, plumbing and electricity, so that he can approve the construction.

Foundations
Basements and crawl spaces are the norm among home construction; however, many homes are being constructed on concrete slabs with no basement or crawl space. The plumbing is located in the concrete, and all flooring will be installed on top of the concrete. The benefit of a slab is that it is cheaper and quicker to construct, but the negatives are that your floors may be colder in the winter. The basement and crawl spaces are constructed out of formed concrete or concrete blocks--they both will be laid on top of a prepared footer that is 24 inches wide and 12 inches thick. During the rainy seasons, it may be difficult to install the footers, basements, crawl spaces and slabs due to the rain.


Floors, Walls and Roofs
The floor of the new home--if not a slab--will be framed from 2-by-10 lumber or floor trusses that are prefabbed to stretch farther. The floor sheathing should be 3/4-inch plywood or oriented strand board (OSB). The walls will usually be framed with 8- or 9-foot studs, and the roof can be framed from 2-by-6 or 2-by-8 inch lumber. Remember that roofs can be framed in many different styles, such as gabled or hipped.

Finishing
There are many areas of the house building process to consider in the final phase. Plumbing and electrical are important parts of this phase. Install all water supply lines--copper or CPVC--if not already installed in a concrete slab, followed by the drain lines, which will almost always be PVC. Next install the electrical services, including light fixtures. Insulation in the attic and walls should go in before the walls are covered. The ceilings and walls may be covered with various panelings or drywall, and the floors may feature tile, carpet, hardwood or vinyl. Finally, the doors, windows and roofing will finalize the project for completion.

Last Updated: Tuesday, 16 December 2014 06:13

About Us

The Construction Centre is the Kenya's busiest industry specific website, with thousands of contractors, architects and specifiers Read more...

Contact us

  • Address: 56 Woodvale Avenue,Runda Evergreen, Nairobi, Kenya.
  • Tel: +(254) 718 221953
  • Fax: +(254) 8512152.
  • Email: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.