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  1. #1
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    Disaster alert! New Build...

    So, I've decided to build a smallish home; to be used as a base for the missus and her mother, and I'll come at the weekends. It'll be set amongst friendly relatives (and they are friendly ) on the missus' land.

    The idea is that if I drop dead or fuk off, she has a nice place to live, amongst her family - she's close to her dad, etc. The dad has built several houses and lived in the area all his life, so he'll take a few months off work and be the foreman. He is as good as gold, watches every penny and is very trustworthy.

    I will start the build in late January and probably take 3 - 4 months - well, that's the plan. So, any advice from members at this stage would be much appreciated.

    The initial plan was to spend 600k, but this may already be climbing; the dad reckons closer to a million for what we want... As a basis, I've taken one of DD's plans, below:





    But, for starters, I want it raised by a floor. So we'll have 3 bedrooms, a bathroom and study upstairs. Where the car is in the pic above should be a little upstairs terrace (maybe with an exterior stairway leading down).

    Downstairs would be half open. Enclosed would be a kitchen, a store area and a toilet. Half enclosed would be a breakfast area and Thai kitchen...

    Along one side would be an overhang that would cover a car port and utility area.

    I'm also fancying a solar panel for the lecci and a solar heating system for the water, as per DrA's thread. But the missus and the dad went all Thai when i introduced these ideas.

    After first chats, the dad reckons that the construction material would be about 400k, and the labour costs would be similar. He's saying that ready made concrete pillings are much cheaper, but may not be okay for this job.

    We have not left any land to settle, so we will need to dig down - now, this is an area I'm a bit worried about... The dad says that the ground is very strong (he says it's like digging through stone), so they only need to drive down pillings to half a metre. Is this right?

    Next steps:

    1) I'm gonna meet up with an architect friend of mine and get some exact plans sorted out - the dad has already said that he won't be sticking to them... (He said it in a nice way...).

    2) Wait for thoughts from the members here.

    Well, any advice?
    How do I post these pictures???

  2. #2
    Member IceSpike's Avatar
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    Understand that construction is an imperfect science. This combined with natural elements (site conditions, weather, wood members, human foibles) means that things could change, must be changed, or simply exceed capabilities. The Mini Blinds behind your Home are not real.
    Kool design. KISS philosophy (Keep It Simple Stupid)

  3. #3
    Have you got any cheese Thetyim's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Bettyboo
    the dad has already said that he won't be sticking to them
    Then get rid of the AH.
    It's your money and your house so have what you want, not what he wants to build

  4. #4
    Days Work Done! Norton's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Bettyboo
    I'm gonna meet up with an architect friend of mine and get some exact plans sorted out - the dad has already said that he won't be sticking to them...
    Quote Originally Posted by Bettyboo
    Well, any advice?
    Better tell dad you want build as per plan. In a nice way.

  5. #5
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    Quote Originally Posted by Thetyim
    Then get rid of the AH. It's your money and your house so have what you want, not what he wants to build
    He didn't say it like that Thetyim. He isn't educated or trained, just worked damn hard all his life, built his home and a couple of others for close relatives - by himself. He's just worried that he doesn't have the skillset to follow plans, but chatting to him, he has the smarts, local knowledge and ability to get jobs done.

    I didn't particularly pick a design I love, just a simple one for a simple home for the missus and her mother really (the parents split up years ago, but get on well and are happy to live within a few rai of each other).

    Also, I don't consider it my home, and I don't expect to end up here; so I'll let the missus, her mum and dad have as much input as they like - it's their home; we've been together nearly 10 years, so I want to give them something concrete, so to speak...

  6. #6
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    Give him the rough plans, give him the budget (and stick to it) and you'll probably end up with something not too bad.

    Personally, it's exactly what I wouldn't build, but Thais like to live in storage heaters as they gain face.

  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by IceSpike
    Understand that construction is an imperfect science.
    Quote Originally Posted by IceSpike
    things could change
    Quote Originally Posted by Marmite the Dog
    Give him the rough plans, give him the budget (and stick to it) and you'll probably end up with something not too bad.
    Looks like you guys have more experience/knowledge than me on this...

    The dad is suggesting that we don't go up, we go sideways because the cost of building strong concrete supports on site is costly. He suggests, raising the property by half a metre only, building on one floor then building as wide as we like (the plot is on nearly 3 rai) would be more cost effective - if they're happy with that, then fine...

    He reckons that the same floor space on one level (raised off the ground) would cost about 60-70% of building it on two levels... Fine.

  8. #8
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    --EDIT--

    Just had to scrap everything I typed because it was based on you building a 2 story place as you stated in the OP. Now that you are going for the bungalow route my words are redundant.


    Good luck with the project.
    Last edited by Bogon; 25-11-2011 at 09:49 PM.

  9. #9
    anonymous ant
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    Quote Originally Posted by Bettyboo View Post
    So, I've decided to build a smallish home; to be used as a base for the missus and her mother, and I'll come at the weekends. It'll be set amongst friendly relatives (and they are friendly ) on the missus' land.

    The idea is that if I drop dead or fuk off, she has a nice place to live, amongst her family - she's close to her dad, etc. The dad has built several houses and lived in the area all his life, so he'll take a few months off work and be the foreman. He is as good as gold, watches every penny and is very trustworthy.

    I will start the build in late January and probably take 3 - 4 months - well, that's the plan. So, any advice from members at this stage would be much appreciated.

    The initial plan was to spend 600k, but this may already be climbing; the dad reckons closer to a million for what we want... As a basis, I've taken one of DD's plans, below:





    But, for starters, I want it raised by a floor. So we'll have 3 bedrooms, a bathroom and study upstairs. Where the car is in the pic above should be a little upstairs terrace (maybe with an exterior stairway leading down).

    Downstairs would be half open. Enclosed would be a kitchen, a store area and a toilet. Half enclosed would be a breakfast area and Thai kitchen...

    Along one side would be an overhang that would cover a car port and utility area.

    I'm also fancying a solar panel for the lecci and a solar heating system for the water, as per DrA's thread. But the missus and the dad went all Thai when i introduced these ideas.

    After first chats, the dad reckons that the construction material would be about 400k, and the labour costs would be similar. He's saying that ready made concrete pillings are much cheaper, but may not be okay for this job.

    We have not left any land to settle, so we will need to dig down - now, this is an area I'm a bit worried about... The dad says that the ground is very strong (he says it's like digging through stone), so they only need to drive down pillings to half a metre. Is this right?

    Next steps:

    1) I'm gonna meet up with an architect friend of mine and get some exact plans sorted out - the dad has already said that he won't be sticking to them... (He said it in a nice way...).

    2) Wait for thoughts from the members here.

    Well, any advice?
    what you just described is a recipe for fukkn disaster!

    village thais know FUKNOTHING about building, and won't/cant read a proper plan.
    THE DANGER SIGNS ARE ALREADY THERE:

    the family have already decided how they are going to spend your money and will follow THEIR ideas, not yours. (they already said as much!
    while many of them are capable of knocking up a reasonable looking thai shack, they are not capable of/ will not do any of the work properly- only the thai way (the fuktup, stubborn easy way)

    the concrete will be mixed with a jawb (hoe kinda thing, coz they are too weak to use a proper spade, and can't use a concrete mixer.)
    because the hoe thing is only good for stirring, the strength of the concrete will be compromised by the addition of far too much water, so that some scrawny little prick will be able to stir it and then another scrawny little prick will work it with an aluminium bar so that it is all nice and shiny and smooth on top but by now the concrete has seperated into three layers: cement (the glue to hold all the stuff together) all on top, with a layer of plastersand (yes. plastersand- the WRONG sand to use in concrete), in the middle, and the stone (the stuff which gives the concrete it's strength) at the bottom.
    that's just the floorslab!
    concrete for the footings will be the same weak sloppy mix.
    now , after the precast pillars have been set in the ground (the first one needing a fat buddhist ceremony with a bunch of queers in orange-coloured dresses mumbling and chanting and being shown respect and made donations to ),
    the "brickwork" will go up:

    concrete?! blocks will be stacked between the pillars, being attatched to the pillars by concrete nails knocked in a millimetre or so into the pillars to keep them there (the pillars i have seen are drilled so that you can run a piece of steel between the courses of the shit "bricks" but they won't do this.
    well, so it will carry on until they get to the roof (the biggest disaster area mainly)
    a ridgebeam construction will be used (nothing wrong if you know how to stress it all and make it properly, but they don't)
    well, if all goes well, you will get it all up and then they will get another local expert to do the tiling.
    fuk!
    the prick will not own a notched trowell, will not start tiling from the centre of the room and he will not leave an expansion joint between the tiles (thais are far too clever for that shit!)
    ok, now comes the electrical part:

    fuk.
    fuk-ditty fukfuk.- fukfuk!
    they will run 10 amp cable from the meter to the house and then fit a 60 amp fuse between them and the house wiring.
    there will be no earth leakage protection and live and neutral wires will all be the same colour throughout, or vary multicoloured if you are lucky!
    no conduit pipe will be used- the wires will be run very neatly down the walls and nailed on with pretty little saddles.
    the wires will all be the same thickness with no regard to how many amps each circuit will draw, so an electric water heater will be wired with the same shit as a circuit that will power a flourescent light fitting.
    ...and there will be pigtail joints with insulation tape all over the place, joining different coloured wires together.
    ...it will all probably work as well, for a while, too!
    this is all legal in thailand, it seems.

    i'm not even going to start rattling on about the plumbing: by now you should have started getting the idea.

    everybody hired to do the work will be a family member or one of their layabout friends irrespective of their ability/experience/work ethic and they will all be overpaid and will expect a free pissup after each "workday", which means in thai: any day when there isn't a party/pissup within a 30km radius of your build!

    you will not be allowed to question or criticise any of the decisions or work done, because you know fuknothing and the thais have built millions of houses and they all know more than you and there will be BIG shit in your relationship if you dare to go down this path.

    i don't know where you will be building,(prices vary according to location), so i cant say whether you are paying too much for the build, but from past experience i can only say this:
    considering the quality of the labour you will be using, you are being done for that part of it
    you will also not be allowed to work out quantities and shop for prices at different suppliers because you are a stoopid farang who can't speak thai and will just get ripped off (partly true), and will be forced to open an account at a local "trustworthy" hardware, who will overcharge and cheat on quantities and collect the money and supply all the invoices... and then pay the family member who negotiated the rip-off a fat kickback on completion of the job.

    if you are not present to supervise and know nothing about building, this is the worst possible way to build a house.

    the second worst possible way to build a house in thailand is to use a "professional builder" (yes, they have them! REAL ONES- with university degrees and all) and THEY will hire the shit local labour and fuck it up the same way but at least you can agree on a price beforehand and make them stick to it and they will give you a guarantee which isn't worth fukkall anyway.

    sorry, mate but those are your choices.

    you could get lucky (a few others have), but getting pappa and brother and cousin and all involved will be the biggest fukkup you will make in your life.





    good luck!
    brrrzzzzt, brrrzzzt!
    beep!. ting, ting
    redirecting, please be patient..........:

    hello, insect!
    brrrzzzt, brrrzzzt..................

  10. #10
    sabaii sabaii
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    Quote Originally Posted by Bettyboo
    worked damn hard all his life, built his home and a couple of others for close relatives - by himself
    Have you seen these houses ? Are they built of straw, sticks or stone ?

    I'd leave it up to the old man, now you've got him involved




    Edit: ^ Um maybe not then
    Last edited by sabaii sabaii; 25-11-2011 at 10:16 PM.

  11. #11
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    [at]tsicar

    I get a teensy weensy idea that you've had some previous issues with house-building in Thailand.

    Don't hold it in. Let it all out - you will feel much better for it

    Simon

  12. #12
    anonymous ant
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    Quote Originally Posted by Simon43 View Post
    [at]tsicar

    I get a teensy weensy idea that you've had some previous issues with house-building in Thailand.

    Don't hold it in. Let it all out - you will feel much better for it

    Simon
    yep!
    i didn't just suck it outta my thumb!

    i went the owner-build route with wonderfull, friendly experienced pappa supervising and ended up firing the whole fukkn lot of them , knocking half of it down and carrying on by myself (no fukkn useless thai labour at all)!

    ...and because i could speak a bit of thai, i ended up having to go around to superman's house and kick his "civil engineer"s arse on a daily basis during his build coz they were driving him up the wall and they (professionals who had a nice portfolio and one could go look at houses they had built as well), were fucking it up big time, and his wife, being a thai was not allowed to criticise the "chang" because women are of a lower social standing and it is not done in thailand to do so.

    i know about concrete
    i know about plumbing
    i know about electrical work
    i know bout tiling
    i know about consrtruction

    ... and if i didn't, it would probably have been better for me because the finished product might have looked ok and everything might have worked ok for a while and i would have thought the thais did a great job at a reasonable price, and i would not have posted on this thread.
    Last edited by tsicar; 25-11-2011 at 10:37 PM.

  13. #13
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    Tiscar is spot on, but seeing as you're seemingly happy to give them 600k then let them get on with it.

  14. #14
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    I hope you don't take this the wrong way Betty, but I think tsicar has gave some solid constructive (excuse the pun) critisism. He's just being cruel to be kind.
    It looks like you have committed to the missus and family that this build is happening and are in the latter stages of putting the 1st shovel in the ground.

    I'm sure if you take all the positives and negatives onboard, you will get what you in the end.

    Keep us updated eh?
    Black diamonds? I shit 'em.

  15. #15
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    Quote Originally Posted by Bogon View Post
    --EDIT--

    Just had to scrap everything I typed because it was based on you building a 2 story place as you stated in the OP. Now that you are going for the bungalow route my words are redundant.


    Good luck with the project.
    I'd still be interested in what you say, mate. I have no fixed plans yet, I'd like as many folk's input as possible before things are set in stone, so to speak.

  16. #16
    anonymous ant
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    Quote Originally Posted by Bogon View Post
    I hope you don't take this the wrong way Betty, but I think tsicar has gave some solid constructive (excuse the pun) critisism. He's just being cruel to be kind.
    It looks like you have committed to the missus and family that this build is happening and are in the latter stages of putting the 1st shovel in the ground.

    I'm sure if you take all the positives and negatives onboard, you will get what you in the end.

    Keep us updated eh?
    thanx bogon and marmite.
    no, i was not just being negative and nor was i just finding another way to bash the thais, although this thread was a very tempting opportunity!

    i honestly hope the op gets a great build done at a great price.

    for those that don't know, because of the lack of control over the building industry (great if you owner build and know what you are doing), and if one looks back in this forum, all the electrical and plumbing nightmares that are just waiting for a chance to become yours are well documented.
    getting the wife's family involved in any venture at all in thailand is also a disaster waiting to happen, if only because of the way thai culture works, and any criticism at all will be met with a brick wall and just cause headaches and problems..

  17. #17
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    Quote Originally Posted by Bettyboo View Post

    We have not left any land to settle, so we will need to dig down - now, this is an area I'm a bit worried about... The dad says that the ground is very strong (he says it's like digging through stone), so they only need to drive down pillings to half a metre. Is this right?
    No, it is not right. The good thing is that you appear to have sound ground on which to build. You should have foundations nearer one metre deep so as to be certain that the house will be sound. Some extra work in digging the hard soil will be worthwhile.

    In another post you mention buildings "sideways" and this is very sensible especially given the large area of the site. I have studied a little because I had considered building a house in Thailand myself and I didn't want to be ripped off by paying for an inferior build.

    As a common sense example : In the UK a garden wall, 42 inches high, would ordinarily sit on footings which were the same depth as your father in law says is suitable for a house ( bungalow ). It stands to reason that single storey dwellings in the UK usually have footings which are just over a metre deep. A house built in Thailand should be the same. If you screw up the foundation, it will be a disaster.
    Your house will look nice even with with no footings at all but this will be no comfort when the bloody thing falls down.

  18. #18
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    I have a mate who relied on a family friend to build his house. He didnt even lay proper foundations and the property is consequently unsafe/unfit to reside in.

    The builder also ran off with almost 500,000 baht which he advanced the guy.

    Allowing unskilled natives to simply make things up as they go along is ok if you have a great deal of time and money to waste.

    If you havent then best take the sound advice offered in previous posts

    I wish you well BB.

  19. #19
    anonymous ant
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    Quote Originally Posted by can123 View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by Bettyboo View Post

    We have not left any land to settle, so we will need to dig down - now, this is an area I'm a bit worried about... The dad says that the ground is very strong (he says it's like digging through stone), so they only need to drive down pillings to half a metre. Is this right?
    No, it is not right. The good thing is that you appear to have sound ground on which to build. You should have foundations nearer one metre deep so as to be certain that the house will be sound. Some extra work in digging the hard soil will be worthwhile.

    In another post you mention buildings "sideways" and this is very sensible especially given the large area of the site. I have studied a little because I had considered building a house in Thailand myself and I didn't want to be ripped off by paying for an inferior build.

    As a common sense example : In the UK a garden wall, 42 inches high, would ordinarily sit on footings which were the same depth as your father in law says is suitable for a house ( bungalow ). It stands to reason that single storey dwellings in the UK usually have footings which are just over a metre deep. A house built in Thailand should be the same. If you screw up the foundation, it will be a disaster.
    Your house will look nice even with with no footings at all but this will be no comfort when the bloody thing falls down.
    different soil conditions require different kinds of foundations.
    seems to me the thais only know one way to build (the thai way)
    for some houses they build, the footings are just right.
    others are way under engineered and often over engineered- there is virtually no deviation or allowance made for soil conditions, so one could pay for a shitload of rebar which is not required in one instance, or use far too little in another.
    my pet gripe is about the way they mix their concrete, and i would strongly recommend the use of one of the readymix companies, who will send a truckload of correctly mixed concrete which conforms to the specified strength required for the job and DO NOT let any of the workers (gwai in thai, for those not familiar with thai construction terms), mix ANY more water into the mix at all.

    without the correct foundation, and even if they do an excellent job on the rest of the house, you have shit on your hands.

  20. #20
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    I'd like to give Tsicar a green, but am out of ammo, so if somebody else could do it for me...

    Yes, lots of good points.

    I have seen his houses (he lives in one) and they are okay for Thais, pretty much as suggested, at length, above.

    I am similar to Tsicar insomuchas I don't really respect the local population... No offense Thailand...

    However, I don't overly give a fuk. I will not be spending out my final days there... Actually, it's at least partially an escape plan. The family have given me much over the years, including money when I needed it, and I've given very little back. Once the missus is happily settled in her home for the rest of her days then I, well, I can do as I please, conscience appeased.

    However, however, that doesn't mean that money needs to be thrown away. So, there are two sides here:

    1) the missus, who learnt from her dad, will not be wasting 1 baht. No local anybody will be overcharging. If there's something they both do well it's look after money. When the missus is at the market and finds the cheapest stall, searches under every pile to find the best bargain, she still demands a discount... The dad is similar.

    2) I clearly do need to be on guard. I will keep the money in my bank account, and we'll set up a staged plan that can be managed closely with regard to costs and time; I'll make sure I'm on top of it.

    3) did I say 2? Quality of workmanship. Some very good points above. How about I bring in some 'experts' such as homepro to do the wiring, and I take care to be very specific with the quality requirements (i.e. my standards)?

    These are exactly the comments I need gents, thank you and keep them up.

    It looks like I'm gonna have to get more involved than I thought... I don't really wanna be doing much onsite management, but careful plans and outlines of quality of goods and just who is capable of doing any particular job...

    So, I'm gonna read through a fair few building threads, and get a spreadsheet and staged plan in place. I suppose step 1 is the foundations. So:

    Step 1 - foundations.

    Digging down half a metre. Okay or not? The land is in Nakhon Nayok. How many piles for this size, do ya reckon? Are the concrete bars/pillars that are already constructed offsite okay?

  21. #21
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    Quote Originally Posted by can123
    No, it is not right. The good thing is that you appear to have sound ground on which to build. You should have foundations nearer one metre deep so as to be certain that the house will be sound. Some extra work in digging the hard soil will be worthwhile.
    Yes, I though a metre too...

    Quote Originally Posted by Mr Lick
    I wish you well BB.
    You've all scared me now!

    Quote Originally Posted by tsicar
    my pet gripe is about the way they mix their concrete, and i would strongly recommend the use of one of the readymix companies, who will send a truckload of correctly mixed concrete which conforms to the specified strength required for the job and DO NOT let any of the workers (gwai in thai, for those not familiar with thai construction terms), mix ANY more water into the mix at all.
    Good idea - on my list.

    Quote Originally Posted by tsicar
    without the correct foundation, and even if they do an excellent job on the rest of the house, you have shit on your hands.
    Very true. I think he knows this because he has already mentioned about not hurrying, taking care with the concrete.

  22. #22
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    I've already dealt with the depth of foundations, see above. Have you ever seen footings in the UK which were only half a metre deep ? Almost certainly not, garden walls, yes, houses, no.

    My biggest fear of Thai buildings is the electricity supply and grounding. Before I move to Thailand I will ensure that I understand all the theory necessary so as to have a safe house. I'm hopeless at actually doing DIY myself as my hands are wonky. I just want to be sure that the guy who is doing the work knows that I know what should be done !

    I haven't checked but, if there isn't already a thread dealing with things like fuse boxes/circuit breakers in Thailand, I think there should be one. I think one should consider buying the boxes in the UK. Other posters with real practical experience might like to advise further.

  23. #23
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    ^ electricity? sorted!

    This'll make you laugh:

    So I mentioned to the missus "We're gonna have to take care with the electricity, pay a bit more and get an expert."

    She said: "Don't worry, my dad's brother has worked for the government electricty board for 20 years, he can do it..."




    Yes, it has started. Too late to abort the plan???

  24. #24
    anonymous ant
    tsicar's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Bettyboo View Post
    I'd like to give Tsicar a green, but am out of ammo, so if somebody else could do it for me...

    Yes, lots of good points.

    I have seen his houses (he lives in one) and they are okay for Thais, pretty much as suggested, at length, above.

    I am similar to Tsicar insomuchas I don't really respect the local population... No offense Thailand...

    However, I don't overly give a fuk. I will not be spending out my final days there... Actually, it's at least partially an escape plan. The family have given me much over the years, including money when I needed it, and I've given very little back. Once the missus is happily settled in her home for the rest of her days then I, well, I can do as I please, conscience appeased.

    However, however, that doesn't mean that money needs to be thrown away. So, there are two sides here:

    1) the missus, who learnt from her dad, will not be wasting 1 baht. No local anybody will be overcharging. If there's something they both do well it's look after money. When the missus is at the market and finds the cheapest stall, searches under every pile to find the best bargain, she still demands a discount... The dad is similar.

    2) I clearly do need to be on guard. I will keep the money in my bank account, and we'll set up a staged plan that can be managed closely with regard to costs and time; I'll make sure I'm on top of it.

    3) did I say 2? Quality of workmanship. Some very good points above. How about I bring in some 'experts' such as homepro to do the wiring, and I take care to be very specific with the quality requirements (i.e. my standards)?

    These are exactly the comments I need gents, thank you and keep them up.

    It looks like I'm gonna have to get more involved than I thought... I don't really wanna be doing much onsite management, but careful plans and outlines of quality of goods and just who is capable of doing any particular job...

    So, I'm gonna read through a fair few building threads, and get a spreadsheet and staged plan in place. I suppose step 1 is the foundations. So:

    Step 1 - foundations.

    Digging down half a metre. Okay or not? The land is in Nakhon Nayok. How many piles for this size, do ya reckon? Are the concrete bars/pillars that are already constructed offsite okay?

    the thai founds are ok for normal soil conditions.
    if on clay,-pilings or for a single story: my favourite, cheap and efficient: a concrete raft foundatoin- (look it up on the net)

    or you could get away with no rebar at all: just a metre deep trench, 600mm wide, and fill with 30mpa concrete 600mm deep if you have good hard stable ground.
    DO use the local concrete truck, though- if you take into account the savings on labour and the peace of mind- it works out about the same price as buying the materials and getting the thais to mix it. same goes for the floorslab, although the gwai will complain loudly about not being allowed to add tons of water to the mix.

    concrete pillars are available and in different lengths and thicknesses.
    use steel threaded through the preformed holes every couple of courses instead of the silly nails into the pillar or both if you feel like it.

    if you go double storey, best is to go suspended wooden floor instead of concrete if you are worried about the foundations.-could even work out cheaper than going "sideways!)
    use the red gum they sell at 20 times the thickness of the flooring planks for the intervals between the joists eg. 20mm thick planks x 20= 400mm between joists.
    or use plywood like i did- much cheaper and looks great if done accurately and then varnished.

    also look up timberframe construction.
    a great, quick way to build.
    wooden frames line inside with gypsum board and outside with that fibreboard stuff and paint, line between with insulation and plumbing and wiring easy to fit in the wall gap. you don't need a serious foundation either.


    unfortunately it is gonna be very difficult to get any thai to deviate from the thai norm tho, so you would have to supervise and fight with them on a daily basis.

    .

  25. #25
    Thailand Expat
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    I have thought a great deal about a house in Thailand and am coming to the conclusion that I should buy a "second hand house" which has been standing for a minimum period of five years without showing any signs of major structural faults. I think that there would be too much aggravation by building my own and I could not trust a "new build".

    Years ago, it used to be said that only fools bought new cars and it was better to buy an older one which had been had been tested and had all its inherent faults repaired. I appreciate that the motor industry has made dramatic progress and this thinking does not apply to cars now. I think, however, that it is appropriate for Thai houses.

    This way of thinking does not help you much in your proposed new build, I'm afraid. My best advice is to ensure that the building process is not done in a rush. As long as your house has "a good pair of boots and a suitable umbrella" in the form of sound foundations and a stable roof, the rest of the building can be put right later.

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