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  1. #51
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    sabang's Avatar
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    Hi Mike,

    Theres plenty of room for a 3rd B/R, I'd prolly put it there, with the pillar as a corner-



    Thus leaving an L shaped living area, as opposed to the 'T' large shape now. Easy to put a bathroom in too.

    You could also go here, leaving a rectangular living area, but it would seperate the 3rd B/R, & plumbing more pricey-



    Good luck- if you want to make the long haul & check out our place, you're welcome. Just tell Orr, and she'll fix it up with the MIL.
    probes Aliens

  2. #52
    Member MUSTY's Avatar
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    Building in Ban Meng (45 klms from Khon Kaen)

    Dear Sabang,
    Musty here, Just an update with our initial inquiry.
    The husband and wife team came to the farm and
    checked it out with the MIL.
    To exactly reproduce what you have, right up to the
    lighting, fan, upgrade toilets plus what ever else you had.
    Price 1.4 m/bht.
    Base price without the upgrades 1.2 M/Bht
    To have a three bedroom version of the base price it
    is 1.25 M/Bht.
    Your thougts on this, did they make little money on your
    place and are squaring it up in a fair minded way.
    Did the price of building materials rise. Their is plenty of
    evidence here with respects to brick and steel current prices.
    Is their a 'falang' factor.
    From what I have read, these people seem to show good service,
    value and a good degree of trust.
    My wife believes that this is a good price considering
    the current market.
    Do you have the original floor plan of the three bedroom
    version you borrowed. (never admit any wrong doings, you
    are only in trouble in this world, if you are caught)
    That you may send me.

    Your thoughts on this matter would be appreciated.

    Michael and Nussara

  3. #53
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    ^ Inflation is real, and the Builders basically pulled all stops out to get the job completed as quickly as they could Mike, to get their money out and turn some profit. Yes, our timing was fortunate- Orr made this quite clear. Building material costs started shooting up as soon as we signed the contract (and before), and I think in particular they had some stock of breeze blocks they had got at 'yesterdays prices', fortunately.

    I estimate our completed pile cost 1mm bht, factoring in the direct builders costs plus what extra we paid for slightly better stuff for them to install. If you are doing a direct 1:1 comparison with your 1.4mm quotation then, I think 40% cost price inflation does seem a bit high. I don't know what other factors apply though such as earth moving, foundation considerations on your soil or whatever.

    20- 25% would seem closer to the mark. Not wishing to be cynical, but could their be a small commission for the MIL built in, for furniture or something? At least you've got the good news that the strength of the AUD somewhat offsets the Baht price inflation - I paid more for my baht!

    Haggle, don't sign anything yet, make it clear to your wife and MIL, and the Builder that you are fully prepared to ask for more quotes, or put the whole thing off for a few months if necessary. There should be some room for negotiation there.
    Last edited by sabang; 17-07-2008 at 03:04 AM.

  4. #54
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    Brilliant. First thread I've read since signing up and already the donation seems trivial.
    Just one criticism. From what I've already seen on other (inferior!) sites, the cost of plans is small, around 15k baht for full detail, so is it really moral to 'copy' aka steal intellectual property? Profit margins in LOS are small anyway.

    Don't fry me. It's only a suggestion

  5. #55
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    sabang's Avatar
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    ^ Fair enuff. 15K doesn't bother me, but I found the basics of what I wanted on public domain, then altered it some. Found the builders to do the job- with a few more alterations at their suggestion- after checking around. So, we got influences from other places built before- but the actual architects were the Builder & myself.

    I've heard some horror stories about Thai architects also, like them demanding royalties if you don't go with the builders they specify and so on.

    I just got what I wanted- simple, functional, ez to follow etc the simplest way possible. Thats my philosophical approach to living here.

    As far as I'm concerned, 'architecture' on a simple bungalow like that is like most legal conveyancing in the West- basically a cut n' paste job.

  6. #56
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    nice tread i migth contact u to get in contact with your builders seems a fair price to me

  7. #57
    Thailand Expat BigRed's Avatar
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    If you go to Living in Asia you will find downloadable plans of houses provided free from the Thai Government. You will find that this is the same url as Lite Beers link to the wiring advice, but the home page doesn't seem to link to either

  8. #58
    Member MUSTY's Avatar
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    Sambang you are no dummy

    Dear Sambang,
    Musty here again, firstly I want to say that your contributions in these
    forums have been tremendous. Enjoyed all your photos on your recent
    holiday. (As well as many other readers)
    Forums are great ways to share knowledge, information and opinions.
    Opinions can never be wrong, and may at some time be proven wrong or
    right, but who cares, all part of the 'learning for life'.

    With respects to the plans, once you have developed your own concepts of
    an idea, they become your own. The only theft is me, taking from what you and
    your own builder have conceived and copying it.

    This has benefited me the most, because mistakes made by the builder
    are usually rectified in the next attempt. Also makes it easier to price and there
    is less change of any communication break downs.

    My brother is a builder and house designer and he states, 'No one worries about
    chasing people for breaches nowadays. You take an idea and make it better, you know own a better idea. Your concept is a sufficent change that makes it better for you. Example:- a minor change can effect the air flow or light in a building.
    This is sufficent to indicate a change or improvement based on your imput.'

    Just thought that I would share that with you.

    As far as the price is concerned, thanks for that. I believe that a 25% increase is sufficent and will present that to the builder.
    As far as being competitive with your house price and this one. We would have to have started at the same start line at the same time.

    So all in all, you are no dummy Sabang, just someone unselfish enough to
    share the good and bad in all things.
    So for that mate, many thanks for your positive contributions. Keep it up.

    Kindest
    Michael and Nussara

  9. #59
    Member MUSTY's Avatar
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    The deal is done

    Dear Sabang,
    Sorry for spelling it wrong in one of my previous messages.

    Yesterday we came to an agreed price on this home after a some intense
    negotiations. The price for your design, slightly modified to a three
    bedroom design (the area in front of the carport) with all inclusions,
    but standard toilet and basins in the two bathrooms. Both western kitchen
    and a little larger thai kitchen at the rear. Insulation and your grade of
    tiles etc. Resulted in a 1.15 million baht agreed price.

    Now we will upgrade the water tank, do you know the maximum size
    water tank that you can purchase in this area. Global is just outside
    Khon Kaen and we may try to see what else is available in the area.

    The house itself is 122 square meters of living area. Possibly bigger
    with car port and outside thai kitchen area.

    Thanks again, apparently we are coming into a three month period that
    effects the commencement of the stucture. The builders will ask which
    day in the month is alright to start from their local monk and get back
    to us.

    Overall, the builders wife is a good negotiator and very upfront with
    respects to pricing. She has also offered to give the MIL the deeds (chanote)
    to their property as security and also a show of mutual trust.
    They were punctional, inspected the site (good elevated site on 8 rai) with
    little earthworks and preparation.

    I would recommend this builder to anyone in their area. She finally concludes
    in our conversation that she and her husband will give their 100% effort
    with respects to the project. So beyond just words, it appears that your
    experience supports their best intentions.
    So we are ready for the journey.
    Many thanks

    Michael and Nussara

    P.S Orr was delighted with your positive feed back on your MIL Bungalow.
    their property

  10. #60
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    sunsetter's Avatar
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    good luck with yours musty, hope you put a build thread up on teakdoor

  11. #61
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    Good luck then Musty- seems a well fair price too.

  12. #62
    Member MUSTY's Avatar
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    Starting on the 8/8/08.

    Thanks Sabang,

    Negotiations complete, third bedroom to where you initially suggested at the rear of the building leaving air flow straight through from the car port via the western kitchen. We have the 'L' shape.
    The building site blessing occurred on the 24/7/08. Thirty free loaders turned up for the blessing and a feed.
    ORR will be taken photos each day and I will post them on this site in due course. We are calling it the 'Sabang II'.

    We are on the Sunshine coast (Eumundi) in Queensland at present. Yee has finished some courses here and working as a check out chick presently, at
    a supermarket. So next year we will visit your MIL and share a meal with her and co.
    Thanks again,

    MUSTY

  13. #63
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    Eumundi- still got that nice old pub there? Yep, here it is, still brewing it's own beer then-




    I stayed for a couple of weeks about 8km from Eumundi, inland towards the mountains- sugar cane country. Nice part of the world.

    It will be interesting to see how 'sabang 2' goes. I may decide to move up to Ubon for a while, in which case I'll prolly get the third bedroom done too to use as a study. Keep us posted.

    p.s:- 8/8/08 To the Chinese, thats a very lucky number.
    Last edited by sabang; 29-07-2008 at 12:05 PM.

  14. #64
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    Nice job Sabang and a good deal IMO.

    Your home away from home

  15. #65
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    Bump. Well, I wonder how 'sabang 2' is going?

    We'll be heading up to Ubon for a couple of weeks around the 20th October, so will see if anything has fallen off yet and update this thread. The word from MIL is all positive though.

  16. #66
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    good luck Sabang

    make sure they move the buffalo out of your bedroom before you get there

  17. #67
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    Bit belated but just stumbled on this thread...tx and gl.

  18. #68
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    Do you let the MIL out of the cage while you are not there?

  19. #69
    Member MUSTY's Avatar
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    Sabang 2 going nicely

    The Sabang mk 2 is going well. Few changes such as a third bedroom which led to the lose of the island bench. Just about to make fourth installment as per contract. They have started gyprocking inside. I have some photos that I will try to post. I haven't been able to load up at the minute. Enjoy your visit back at the eagles nest. (sounds better than aviary). Hope all is well for all your family.

  20. #70
    Member MUSTY's Avatar
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    The building of 'Sabang Two'

    Thanks Sabang for your help on this one. The 'Sabang Two' commenced on the 8/8/08 ( a good luck day for everyone )

    Cost - 1.15 million baht to completion

    Describtion - Three bedroom, two bathroom, 2 kitchen (1 Thai x 1 western).
    Garage, brick rendered home, insulted, earthed wiring. Split level, Approximately 150 Sq.M.

    Property is a small 8 Rai farm, near bang meng village, 40 minutes north east of
    Khon Kaen.

    Firstly the mother in law. For some of us, great admiration for a hard working woman who's dream has now come true. She still hasn't got the smile off of her face.


    Photo of the MIL inside their humble timber village home.
    Not hard to see why they call it the LOS. This hard nut, works like a horse and doen't stop unless she faints from the loss of too much blood . 5 foot nothing of bull terrier. Everyone is up at 5am as jobs have to be done. Real boot camp.
    No yack yack for this one. Lao girl who originally jumped the fence, spent her youth in rice paddies and looking after her young brothers and sisters. The house is over 120 years old. Great hand me down. Although the farm house is finished, no one touches this old house. A reflection of her proud past.

  21. #71
    Thailand Expat
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    Quote Originally Posted by sabang
    We'll be heading up to Ubon for a couple of weeks around the 20th October
    We ended up going about a month later. I'll add some stuff in due course, but I reckon lets look at Mustys newly completed house first.

    Bring it on Musty.

  22. #72
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    Here is the original house in the village. Please do not adjust your television screens. This is the Thai version of the leaning tour of pizza (joking here)
    The beams are designed for pigmie's. I can't tell you how many times I have smacked my head on the ceiling beams.



    Front entrance to the cave. The timber is so old it has turned to rock, but I think
    that one day with the lean on it, the in laws would have woken up one morning will some roof sheeting permanently stappled to their faces. Wouldn't try this steps if you have had a few to drink. It really didn't take long to get the dirt off my face. This house and floor is attended two twice a day by the drill sergeant.


    Drill sergeant MIL standing to attention outside the kitchen. This woman is
    very dangerous with an axe, every morning chopping up timber for the fire.
    I think she is so good with an axe, it really is a tooth pick factory inside.
    Every pick hand crafted. Five minutes in a room with her chopping timber with an axe and opening cans with a sharp knife has made me paranoid. Just think of it, wheeling knifes and axes and smiling looking at me and saying, 'what do you want with my daughter? I have a dry mouth right about now and need to cough.....

  23. #73
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    Recognise this one Sabang. Card board cut out of the original.



    In the background is a small shed where the in laws attended to the small farm.
    Bananas, vegetables, rice, turkeys, chickens etc. They would sleep just off the dirt floor in hammocks.


    The contrete and steel skeleton.

  24. #74
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    The red brick lives on....

    Sabang, their is so much concrete/formwork over this garage, looks like you could build on top of it. Like the upstairs retreat?

    Some days there would be 20 people working on the project. The builder was doing two houses at once. When they were not working on the second project they would all come over and give it a good hit.


    To be continued...

  25. #75
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    Now for a shot of two around the farm. Good year for the rice, plenty of rain.

    4 Rai of rice planted, mostly sticky rice. Sweet tooths......



    One of the small dams, mostly all the dams surround the farm so everyone has plenty of water. Extra rain this year.

    The chicken and turkey run. If only the in laws would stop making soup out of these guys. Bring on the 'roast'.

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