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  1. #1
    I am in Jail
    Butterfly's Avatar
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    Building your Dream House in Thailand: A nightmare ?

    I want to build a small beachhouse later this year or maybe next year. The land is one major problem, but I could eventually manage. However, after being done with the interior design of my townhouse, and figthing for weeks with contractors over fucking up almost everything (they can't build anything straight), I am a little bit worried about building up a new place. I can imagine with such a bigger project how so many things can go wrong. And it's stressful.

    How do you guys manage ? would be nice to have a farang foreman who knows what he is doing instead of the usual non-English speaking Thai foreman who only show up from time to time after everything it's fucked up and it's too late to fix.


  2. #2
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    The Ghost Of The Moog's Avatar
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    This should be mildly amusing. I definitely encourage you to do this.

  3. #3
    I am in Jail
    Butterfly's Avatar
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    It would indeed.

  4. #4
    I am in Jail
    stroller's Avatar
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    Well, just lelax and let them get on in the way they know best.
    I'll give you some more detailed tips when I'm in the mood.

  5. #5
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    there are many farang run building companies here in Thailand, trouble is they got to use the same crap building materials as the Thai run companies....

  6. #6
    Bubbly Sales Girl
    Ice Maiden's Avatar
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    My Dad did this.

    Everyday he came to visit the building site without fail to see what the Thai builders were doing wrong. And everytime they had made a mess of something! He'd give the builders a job to do and they'd smile and say they understood everything then we would come back to see the job not done or a complete fuck up of it. The same problems always show when my Dad takes part in any building project based in Thailand.

    My Dad ended up being stressed constantly with everyone after he'd seen the building site taking it out on anyone that came within walking distance!

    If you wish to do this, go ahead but I wouldn't recomend taking part in this if you dont know what you are doing.
    Welcome to the jungle!

  7. #7
    Thailand Expat
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    agreed Ice

    even if you know what you are doing, it can be hell

    I am looking forward to my own hell next year

  8. #8
    punk douche bag
    ChiangMai noon's Avatar
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    The builders are just finishing off my extension.
    Looks like they have done a lovely, totally unsupervised job.

    Of course, i wouldn't know re-bar from a can of deodorant.

  9. #9
    Thailand Expat
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    If you use rebar, CMN, you tend to smell more

    I will have to get their contact number from you some time, please keep it handy for me next year!!

  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by DrAndy
    If you use rebar, CMN, you tend to smell more

    I will have to get their contact number from you some time, please keep it handy for me next year!!
    CMN, also your concrete won't be very strong using deodorant.

    Butterfly, I share your dread of building anything in Thailand. I've just bought a place instead of trying to build my "dream home" as I did not want to go through the ordeal of dealing with builders who really have no idea about building and no pride in the work they do.

    It can be a difficulty with language sometimes but this is not the only explanation.

    A few friends that I spoke to convinced me of buying an established home instead of trying for the "dream." One was a Kiwi who speaks good Thai and Lao (he can even speaks some English) and expressed the troubles that he had to go through in building his place. He'd leave instructions for the builders in the morning, make quite sure they understood what was required and then go off to work, leaving the builders to their job. In the afternoon/evening, he'd return and find that they had not followed instructions and, in some cases, done exactly the opposite to what was instructed. Another friend was a Thai who tried for her "dream home," went through 3 lots of builders, and now, 2 years later, is still sorting out some of the problems. Finally, a friend managed to achieve her "dream home" but only by employing her own superviser to live on site and for her to daily inspect the progress and take responsibility for all purchases.

    All the best, Butterfly

    bobf

  11. #11
    Thailand Expat
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    I had to laugh at Aging One's missus last weekend. They're having part of the garden paved and a canopy of some description put up, and Mrs AO is all over them making sure everything is perfect. She's scaring the sit out of them. Anyone who wants a foreman should PM him.

  12. #12
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    yeah, mine is a nightmare for them builders too

    she makes them cry, but buys them a bottle of Sangsom at the end of the week

  13. #13
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    Butterfly's Avatar
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    Well, this is good news then.

    Yes it's hell, but if you show them how to do things right, they will listen but you have to stay next to them and nano-manage them to make sure they got the instructions right. I had to show one guy how to paint once. He was looking at me like he never saw a farang painting. He probably never did.

    Yeah, the heart of the problem is that they don't take pride in their job. For them, work is hell, and it's just a question to get through the day. With that in mind, you have to understand why you need to keep a close eye on them. I don't mind the workers inability, what piss me off is the lack of supervision. The supervisor, aka Foreman, is the one responsible for the fuckups, not the workers, who are clueless anyhow and it's not their job to think.

  14. #14
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    The Ghost Of The Moog's Avatar
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    You should spend 75% of your budget on land. Don't be too concerned if it doesn't yet have road access, high voltage power or water, as - unless its hopelessly remote,- that will come.

    Remember land is an appreciating asset, whereas houses are depreciating assets, particularly in the saline winds.

  15. #15
    The Gent
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    I'm scaling back the plans for my 'dream house' the more me & the missus plan it out. We'll be in the 'Baan Nook' big-time and don't want to be the Kemoy-magnet. If I was building in a gated housing estate, I might 'splurge' a bit more but TIT.


    We will be living on-site when construction takes place so that's a plus. Also doing a 2 meter wall around the property - ~3 rai which might help...

  16. #16
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    aging one's Avatar
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    Mrs AO got it finished at 7pm thursday night. Well not totally finished, but near enough to call it quits for a month or so and come up with a few new ideas.

  17. #17
    I am in Jail
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    Quote Originally Posted by The Gent
    We will be living on-site when construction takes place so that's a plus. Also doing a 2 meter wall around the property - ~3 rai which might help...
    That's a good plan. 3 Rai ? where ? expensive ?

  18. #18
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    The Ghost Of The Moog's Avatar
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    I have a friend who has about 4 rai for sale in Phuket - Its on Andrew Park for THB 10 million but I reckon I could persuade him to sell it for around 6.

    He's another gay guy , so you have something in common.

  19. #19
    I am in Jail
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    Quote Originally Posted by The_Ghost_Of_The_Moog
    I have a friend who has about 4 rai for sale in Phuket - Its on Andrew Park for THB 10 million but I reckon I could persuade him to sell it for around 6.

    He's another gay guy , so you have something in common.
    Where in Phuket ?

  20. #20
    The Gent
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    Quote Originally Posted by Butterfly
    Quote Originally Posted by The Gent
    We will be living on-site when construction takes place so that's a plus. Also doing a 2 meter wall around the property - ~3 rai which might help...
    That's a good plan. 3 Rai ? where ? expensive ?
    Bought it 3 years ago for 450k baht at 41 to 1 including transfer fee.
    Northern part of Suphanburi near Samchuk - real bucolic but I'm the only Farang around and there's some wild Karaoke on the weekends!

  21. #21
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    I've had loads of building stuff done without any problems but I'm really not that fussy.

  22. #22
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    Same here.
    I just want it to be more durable than the restorations I did in the UK.
    I must admit I am impressed: they were a bit overzealous if anything. Had to stop them using to much concrete on occasion, and they were rather selective with the second-hand materials from the old barn.

    On the negative, I ended up redoing some of the wiring and doing the paint-jobs myself, though.

  23. #23
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    Quote Originally Posted by stroller
    they were rather selective with the second-hand materials from the old barn.
    I've had that exact same problem, prob cos they were not spending their own money. They do love their concrete and steel though

  24. #24
    better looking than Ned
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    My wife and father inlaw were hard on our builders. after laying the tiles they went along tapped every tiles if it made a hollow sound they were made to pull it up and re set it.
    In our village before you start building you both have to agree on a mediator to settle any dissputes.
    Which for us worked well as we kicked the builder out when the house was 95% complete and stole two of his workers by offering 25% pay rise and re-inburst us 150,000 bht for the work that he did not do
    Father inlaw lost a friend over the building of the house due to the old why do you care farang pay atitude
    What you need is a respected thai on your side dealing with the builders and then you will see them jump

  25. #25
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    3 million baht for a house build out in the sticks is quite high, must be quite a big place

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