House Plans

Ways to save money on your Home Build

Choose the Best Route to build your home or do renovations.

  1. What are your needs now and what will your family's needs be in the future? How many rooms do you need? Don't forget those kitchen walls need cupboards and appliances. Bedrooms need cupboards and Bathrooms need sanitary ware and finishing's.

  2. Look at how you live now and where do you spend the most of your time in your home. Why spend the time and money to build or remodel?

  3. Reflect on homes you have visited or even lived in at some point in your life. What features did you enjoy?

  4. Consider the features of your land. Where is the sunlight at it's best? Which direction offers the greatest views and the cool breezes? Could remodeling capture a picturesque view overlooked by architects during the principal design stages?

  5. Select exterior finishing details with care. Note that if you're building in a heritage site district, which may restrict exterior modifications. Consider the maintenance of repainting your home every few years also.

  6. Browse through building plan catalogs online. There are various websites selling their generic house plans for good prices.

  7. Use the web's search function offered by "online directories of building plans". House plans from sites like Google Search are homes that have often been designed as custom homes for past clients and modified a little before being offered as stock plans to the general public.

  8. Select a floor plan that most closely matches your ideal home layout. Do you need adaptability? Perhaps you should consider a house without walls.

  9. Estimate your building costs. Your budget will determine many choices you make in the design of your home. If your on a tighter budget make a list of must haves and nice to have. You could always add them later when you're financially able.

  10. Consider hiring an architect to personalize your building plan, or to create a custom design.

  11. See the step by step building process of a Home Build.

Existing home or building a new one; here are some ways to save on house plan costs.

So you've bought an existing house and want to do renovations. Let us tell you the ways you can save either time or money and maybe even both. Please note: Legally you cannot do major renovations without approved construction plans.

  1. So you've bought a house but they came with no existing building plans. You will have to contact your local district office to begin the process of getting your house plans if they still exist. Note that some may have been lost over time; destroyed due to negligence or there never were any plans submitted to district offices (this is seldom the vase but we have heard cases like these). You could involve an architect f you know you will need one later to either redraw those plans or add in the required renovations you intend on doing. You might save on architect fee to go to the district office on your behalf, usually they charge for this and send their own proxy to go stand in line. You could save on their fee and go sit in line yourself if you're up to it or just want to save money wherever you can.

  2. Note that the district office may require a copy of the House Title Deeds and a copy of the Title Deeds holders id to submit a request for copies of the house plans. You're real estate agent may help you with this but the bank which your financing the house from will definitely have a copy, or so they should. Not sure if banks charge for this service; if they do please let us know so we can inform all about it.

  3. Buy generic ready made house plans online. They vary in size; shape and other means. But be warned you will have to hire an architect to first check that the plans are up to code and if they approve will have to submit it to council for approval, the general public cannot submit plans without an architect. The architect assumes responsibility for the construction of the building to be built as per the approved construction plan. You will save a lot of money by buying it this way as long as your architect isn't overcharging you because you're in a remote area where you have no choice but to accept their fee. We suggest contacting one and question them on what they would charge you for the following: Agree to approve the ready made plans you bought off the internet; submitting them to council for approval and ensure builder builds as per plan.

  4. So you have the existing house plans but they're not in the greatest condition and may no longer be acceptable to council. Your architect may insist on drawing up new plans altogether. Try first to scan those document's at your local print store (if they're faded ask the print store to scan them as high a definition as possible and in color if applicable) Then see if they're a good enough quality to be imported into AutoCAD programs or alike. This will save you a lot of time and money submitting them to architects.

We will add more ways; if we identify the need from the public.

Contact us and let us know to know more ways to save

Minor building works that do NOT need approval include:

  • Braais without a chimney

  • Garden sheds less than 3 m2

  • Gate for cars – unless partly on pavement or the City’s land

  • Replacement of windows or doors– provided the existing frames aren’t load bearing, and that openings aren’t enlarged or that any openings needed for fire escapes aren’t removed

  • Minor repairs to a house or shop – for example, replacement of roofing or tile sheets

  • New appliances or new fittings – for example, installing a new toilet, bath or geyser, or changing the position of these, provided that the work does not include new or extended drainage or plumbing.

Minor building works that DO need approval include:

Even though they may be on private land and may not be a major build, minor works that do need approval include:

  • Swimming pools

  • Wendy houses

  • Garden sheds bigger than 3 m2

  • Carports

  • Any renovations that add new elements to a fundamental aspect of the building or property – like different roofing tiles, or a removal of a wall that may change the building’s structure

  • Boundary walls

  • Any temporary building being used for construction – like a builder’s hut

  • Aviary