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Old 06-02-2012, 07:32 AM   #1
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budget, quality, and diy


If you were building a structure, say an outbuilding to serve as an office or studio, or a significant add to an existing structure, what are some ways you would build more affordably?

For example, is there an advantage to go 6" studs @ 24" OC vs the typical 4" @ 16" OC? Knowing that windows and doors will need jamb extensions maybe that example, when all the costs are factored, would be a wash? Or another example would be steel studs vs wood.


I think some comments on how to do certain parts of a larger project that save money would be helpful and encouraging to DIYers, especially from the guys here with lots of expierence at DIY and the GCs here that are so helpful to us that don't make a living in the building trades.

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Old 06-02-2012, 07:51 AM   #2
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Check Craigslist for lumber for sale.

Check local builder suppliers for mis-measured window they ALWAYS have "out back" for a fraction of the original price.

(call around and ask first, you'll be amazed, they're more than happy to get rid of them!)

Also, ask them if they have any "discontinued" shingles in that shed over there for two or three bucks a bundle....

Go to local auctions for fantastic deals on building supplies.

I saved MANY thousands of $$$$ doing all of these things.

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Old 06-02-2012, 02:25 PM   #3
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Check Craigslist for lumber for sale.

Check local builder suppliers for mis-measured window they ALWAYS have "out back" for a fraction of the original price.

(call around and ask first, you'll be amazed, they're more than happy to get rid of them!)

Also, ask them if they have any "discontinued" shingles in that shed over there for two or three bucks a bundle....

Go to local auctions for fantastic deals on building supplies.

I saved MANY thousands of $$$$ doing all of these things.

DM

All good suggestions on ways to save on materials.



How about ways to save on the construction, on how things go together?
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Old 06-02-2012, 03:00 PM   #4
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I did all the putting together myself, so no $$$ spent there, and any questions I had, I asked here!

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Old 06-02-2012, 03:22 PM   #5
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One thing I've found to be the most valuable as a DIY'er is having a plan!

I have found planning what you're going to do on what day, weather days, if you need a buddy for certain jobs, etc really help focus attention on getting things completed and motivate you to stay on task.

Two or so years ago I did a bathroom remodel. I used google's "sketch up" to put it all together and it was the best DIY project I've done to date! I knew what measurements I had to work with for fitting vanity, linen closet, tub and shower, etc which allowed me to hit the stores for the cheapest deals on old stock items.

The shingles you mentioned above, I did just that and got 25 year shingles for $2.00 a bundle no tax to redo my garage roof. Money in the bank.

I never thought about the mis measured windows you mentioned.. Hmmmmmmm
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Old 06-02-2012, 03:29 PM   #6
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Size and spacing of studs can be dependent on several issues that are building code related to your specific area:

1. wind & gravity loads
2. height of wall, and number of floors
3. required wall R-value

I'm in a coastal area in Massachusetts and have designed exterior walls that needed to be 2x8 studs at 12" o.c. due to the wind load and height of the wall.

Typical 2x4 wall can only provide R-15 insulation without the use of closed cell spray foam, or adding rigid insulation board to the exterior of the wall. Most building codes now require R-20 wall insulation now. For normal insulation this requires a 2x6 wall.

I don't believe a cookie cutter answer can be provided in regards to stud size and spacing, but I do like where you're going with your post.
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Old 06-02-2012, 03:36 PM   #7
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Quote:
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I never thought about the mis measured windows you mentioned.. Hmmmmmmm
Doing this, I found and purchased 14 brand new windows for under $800.00.
Framed them in as I went, I picked out nice, matching double hungs mostly, and installed them all myself. They wanted $860.00 EACH for my 6'x6' picture windows, installed..... I think I saved a few bucks....
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Old 06-02-2012, 05:31 PM   #8
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All good suggestions---one more for you---

Think of the future.

Buy the best you can afford and insulate the place like an ice cream cooler---

Plan for energy efficiency--good heating system--lots of insulation and the most efficient windows you can find---

Best to spent a bit more building and enjoy a cheap place to live for years to come.

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