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  1. #1
    Newbie Postman Pat's Avatar
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    How to satisfy my "nesting instinct"?

    Hi All, Have enjoyed browsing your site and particularly the construction escapades.

    Any construction work I have tried to organize during the last 10 years of living in Thailand has always ended up incomplete. Usually due to inexperience (mine and the builders), incompetence (mine and the builders), impatience (mine and the builders), and most recently thefts and destruction of my stuff by the builders. My wife has got used to me disagreeing with builders and she no longer intervenes, or translates….and I don’t want her to. It always causes too much family friction.
    However, I still have the “nest building” instinct and want to put a comfortable abode on my 75m x 75m level grass plot in an Isaan village. There are already two wooden houses from the 70’s which my father-in-law and step-son use (when they are not away – government driver and Thai Navy), but they have said I can have them if I want. They will stay on our farm when they are in town (that’s another story).

    We have a one year old son who has just started running around chasing small animals so I’d like to get a place put up quickly. My work means I am often away from home and I am only occasionally able to offer supervision. To be honest, I can’t stand dealing with the builders. I’m a civil engineer by trade (though a long time ago) and I can’t get used to the Thai way of building things (ie. No vibrators, no plasticizer, no theodolites, etc, etc)

    So, I am considering my options, bearing in mind my anxieties about Thai contruction crews.

    1.) Renovate one of the 1970s wooden houses – needs new electrics, new roof, some new wood, insulate walls and ceiling, possibly move foundation

    + Cheap (400,000 baht)
    + Quick (if don’t have to re assemble)

    - Leaks, creaks, not sure how much wood needs replacing.
    - Possession history means won’t be “My House”. It’s a bit of a family meeting place.

    2.) Buy ready made two-bedroom “Knockdown” wooden house standard design – need to construct concrete pads and columns, electrics and fittings.

    + Cheap (700,000 baht) but “holiday home” feel
    + All new materials
    + Mobile - can move if need to.
    + Makers are specialists

    - Maybe too small: make kitchen, storeroom and carport underneath?
    - Termite maintainance needed
    - Longevity (30 years?)

    3.) Two bedroom “Knockdown” wooden house using my “custom design” – Concrete pads and columns, electrics and fitting.

    + Perfect style with kitchen inside, storeroom and carport underneath
    + All new materials
    + Mobile - can move if need to.

    - Not the normal construction for makers. My dimensions might throw them a bit.
    - About 1,000,000 baht?
    - Termite maintainance needed
    - Longevity (30 years?)

    4.) Two bedroom concrete house to my design – complete build from scratch

    + Permanent
    + No termites
    + Re-sale value considerable

    - 1,000,000 Baht plus for only 2 bedrooms.
    - have to 100% rely on builders (who are usually shit)
    - can’t move it if we re locate to the farm.
    - may take up to a year to build.


    At the moment I am favouring going to one of the “Knockdown” wooden house manufacturers, picking a design, sticking it on the back of a wagon, and having the same firm erect it in about 20 days. However the local termites will be salivating the minute the wagon turns up, I imagine. It could be just doorknobs and sawdust by Christmas.

    Every time I consider a concrete house I get a cold sweat thinking about Thai builders standing on my garden furniture and hammering screws into window frame hinges.

    Could anyone else add to my pros and cons for each type of dwelling? Even better can someone build my house and call me when its all finished?

    Any advice of which option to go for, or to avoid, appreciated.

    Cheers

  2. #2
    Thailand Expat
    dirtydog's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Postman Pat
    At the moment I am favouring going to one of the “Knockdown” wooden house manufacturers, picking a design, sticking it on the back of a wagon, and having the same firm erect it in about 20 days. However the local termites will be salivating the minute the wagon turns up, I imagine. It could be just doorknobs and sawdust by Christmas.
    I reckon this one, but employ a couple of guys to stay there all the time just to paint the wood with kreosite everyday, one to do the main painting everyday and one just to touch up any piece of wood that has had a saw near it to trim it, should last a life time or 2 then with a bit of upkeep.

  3. #3
    Thailand Expat
    RandomChances's Avatar
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    05-02-2016 @ 12:46 AM
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    Quote Originally Posted by Postman Pat
    1.) Renovate one of the 1970s wooden houses – needs new electrics, new roof, some new wood, insulate walls and ceiling, possibly move foundation

    + Cheap (400,000 baht)
    + Quick (if don’t have to re assemble)
    I've done that, has an advantage that you don't have to do it all at the same time. Ours were 40 years old and had been derilict for about 7 years. Not much problem with termites. If I tried to build it from scratch now it would cost me a arm and a leg as the wood would be too expencive.
    I have more than the average number of arm and legs

  4. #4
    Thailand Expat
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    Quote Originally Posted by Postman Pat View Post
    4.) Two bedroom concrete house to my design – complete build from scratch

    + Permanent
    + No termites
    + Re-sale value considerable

    - 1,000,000 Baht plus for only 2 bedrooms.
    - have to 100% rely on builders (who are usually shit)
    - can’t move it if we re locate to the farm.
    - may take up to a year to build.
    Will probably take about 3 months to build for a simple 2-bedroom home. Sit down with the builders and your plans. Have the wife translate. Tell them (within) reason that this is the way that you want it done.

    Do it right or do it twice. Pay in increments.

    Not as nice as a Teak home.

    And yes, one can have termites in concrete...

  5. #5
    Newbie Postman Pat's Avatar
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    Thanks Guys.

    Yes, I agree with you all.

    Here was me thinking strongly about designing my own "knockdown house" (Option number 3) and I get advice from 3 respected board members, each suggesting one of the other options.

    Will do a few sums, but permanent creosote men on site sounds likely.

    Cheers. Keep out the way of them tanks.

  6. #6
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    endure's Avatar
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    14-11-2010 @ 06:35 PM
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    Do these 'knockdown wooden house' suppliers have any websites that I could go and look at pls?

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