Armchair Builder

CAT | Owner-Builder

There a several good options available to those wanting to add space to their existing home.  But which is the most cost efficient?  Here we take a look at some of the more popular ways to add living space and discuss the relative costs of each. The most cost effective way to add space to [...]

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Bidding out your project is like shopping for a new car.  It’s important to, 1) know what you want, 2) never take the first price, 3) compare apples to apples.  That’s it.  You’re welcome.  But seriously, using good technique when bidding out your home building projects and repairs to contractors can save you thousands of [...]

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It’s interesting to see how many homes are built by owner builders each year in the permit numbers put out by the U.S. Census Bureau.  One of the more common questions asked by people wanting to build a new home is, “Can an average person manage the construction of their own home as an owner [...]

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Armchair Builder was created by a builder to give regular folks access to professional builder tools and resources.  These tools have been adapted to make them easier to use by novice owner builders looking to save money and gain control over their larger building projects.  One of our readers asked the question this week, “I [...]

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An owner builder reached out to us this week asking how our products would help in determining the price for his new home.  Determining the cost for a new build is one of the biggest questions people have when venturing into a new home build.  The good news is Armchair Builder was created to provide [...]

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If you are visiting Armchair Builder for the first time you may be asking yourself, “exactly how many people built their own home in 2014?”  After all, it can be a complicated, time consuming endeavor that many people aren’t prepared to handle.  To answer this question we take a look at the latest U.S. Census [...]

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  Building your dream home can be an expensive endeavor.  From the gorgeous lot with the view to the sparkly quartz countertops, each item that will make your new home “yours” comes with a price.  But just like everything else we buy, there are deals to be had on building materials and labor to build [...]

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How often do you hear…It all starts with the foundation? Actually, it all really begins with the home plans.  A good, complete set of home plans can save you a boat load of headaches on your project.  As an owner-builder, you have many options when it comes to home plans.   From pre-designed stock plans to a custom [...]

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Is there an easy way to determine the cost to build a home?  The National Association of Home Builders periodically surveys professional builders to find out what it costs them to build a home.  This survey gives average house costs for new single family homes constructed across different states in the U.S.  The numbers are [...]

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If you’ve ever had problems with your house sewer lateral (the pipe that runs from the house to the street), you know how frustrating things can get.  A simple obstruction within the sewer line can cause backups into the home which can cause a huge mess.  On top of that, the bathrooms, showers and kitchen [...]

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