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Old 07-11-2018, 05:59 PM   #31
FasYankee
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Ok, here goes:

The best way when building a house is to hire a GC and get plans set. Have a contract. The contract will have allowances. Each allowance will be for seperate sections of the building process and they align with what most people do is get a construction loan. So say you have $30k allowance for the foundation. The bank will come out, inspect the foundation and then release the $30k to the builder. Now what we found to be most advantageous is to ďtake awayĒ some of the allowances from the builder and as such you donít end up borrowing that portion of the construction loan from the bank. For instance I bartered @$65k worth of signs for a cabinet companies new building/offices and took that away from the builder. The cabinets were delivered to the site and I installed them. So I saved $65k minus the cost of materials for the signs (@$20k) and my time. So figure $45k. Now I understand not everyone has a business and I really did just luck out that the cabinet co needed signs. But hereís what anyone (whose handy and has the time) can do.

Get a Direct Buy membership. Iím not kidding. For someone whose not planning on building or doing a MAJOR house renovation it doesnít make any sense but to build a house or do major reovation jobs itís a no brainer. Hereís how it works:

When I joined I think the membership was like $4500, one time with an annual $90 administrative fee. Iím pretty sure itís gone up but what youíll save is ridiculous. The way direct buy works is youíre buying directly from the manufacturer (hence the name) and it cuts out distributor and retail markup which can be up to 70%. They literally have everything you will need to build and furnish an entire home with the exception of lumber/sheetrock/wiring. You can get tile, carpet, shingles, siding, windows, doors, countertops, cabinets, furniture, appliances, stereos, fireplaces, lighting, faucets, toilets, sinks, vanities, literally everything......curtains.....what lever you can think of they got it. Our first order from them was the vinyl siding and after comparing the pricing of the absolute cheapest vinyl siding that Home Depot had and the top of the line that direct buy had weíd saved like 3x the cost of the membership. During the renovation/addition to our current house we literally saved $100k if not more. I really was skeptical but after the siding I bought all kinds of stuff, tile, granite counters, all the kitchen cabinets, all the bathroom stuff (tubs, showers, vanities).

So anyway, after the deck is built and the structure goes up you systematically take away portions of the build process from the GC (heís not going to be happy and will probably hate you after you do so). And then you do all the stuff yourself. Carpet I would not recommend doing, but you can find a guy to install it cheap (labor only) and you get the carpet at a major discount, tile is easy, hanging cabinets is easy, trim work....eh, I find it easy but some people may not, finish plumbing is easy, finish electric is easy (installing lights/fans/shit like that) and again instead of paying a triple markup fo the materials youíre saving a shit ton of money. The only caveat is you have to have the time and the skill. If you donít have the time or canít commit to losing sleep and lots of it youíre not going to be able to pull it off. If you can commit the time then I canít see any other way to save that much cash. Oh and you can buy tools at direct buy too.....so if you run into something that needs a new tool then thatís a bonus too! Everyone likes tools!
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Old 07-11-2018, 06:11 PM   #32
FasYankee
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Oh and another thing. The stuff isn’t AT direct buy, the place is like a library, there’s books upon books of manufacturer listings. So if you know what you want it’s easy you look it up and put in your order. Some of the stuff they have examples in the showroom but it’s not like it’s full of appliances or anything. If you want to shop for hands on experience you just go look at stuff at a big box store, write down the make/model and then go order it. Delivery is extra but I had a truck & big landscape trailer so some stuff I picked up, other stuff like the cabinets and all the windows/doors I had delivered. And they don’t carry garbage either. Everything is either mainstream brand name or top shelf stuff that lots of people have never heard of (my windows were MFG in Canada and have a way higher R rating than anything you can get from Harvey/Anderson/whoever offered here in the US—-they’re triple paned argon filled sashes)....they have those giant refrigerators....Viking or Nordic or whatever....shit like that.
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Old 07-12-2018, 08:27 AM   #33
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Originally Posted by FasYankee View Post
Ok, here goes:

The best way when building a house is to hire a GC and get plans set. Have a contract. The contract will have allowances. Each allowance will be for seperate sections of the building process and they align with what most people do is get a construction loan. So say you have $30k allowance for the foundation. The bank will come out, inspect the foundation and then release the $30k to the builder. Now what we found to be most advantageous is to ďtake awayĒ some of the allowances from the builder and as such you donít end up borrowing that portion of the construction loan from the bank. For instance I bartered @$65k worth of signs for a cabinet companies new building/offices and took that away from the builder. The cabinets were delivered to the site and I installed them. So I saved $65k minus the cost of materials for the signs (@$20k) and my time. So figure $45k. Now I understand not everyone has a business and I really did just luck out that the cabinet co needed signs. But hereís what anyone (whose handy and has the time) can do.

Get a Direct Buy membership. Iím not kidding. For someone whose not planning on building or doing a MAJOR house renovation it doesnít make any sense but to build a house or do major reovation jobs itís a no brainer. Hereís how it works:

When I joined I think the membership was like $4500, one time with an annual $90 administrative fee. Iím pretty sure itís gone up but what youíll save is ridiculous. The way direct buy works is youíre buying directly from the manufacturer (hence the name) and it cuts out distributor and retail markup which can be up to 70%. They literally have everything you will need to build and furnish an entire home with the exception of lumber/sheetrock/wiring. You can get tile, carpet, shingles, siding, windows, doors, countertops, cabinets, furniture, appliances, stereos, fireplaces, lighting, faucets, toilets, sinks, vanities, literally everything......curtains.....what lever you can think of they got it. Our first order from them was the vinyl siding and after comparing the pricing of the absolute cheapest vinyl siding that Home Depot had and the top of the line that direct buy had weíd saved like 3x the cost of the membership. During the renovation/addition to our current house we literally saved $100k if not more. I really was skeptical but after the siding I bought all kinds of stuff, tile, granite counters, all the kitchen cabinets, all the bathroom stuff (tubs, showers, vanities).

So anyway, after the deck is built and the structure goes up you systematically take away portions of the build process from the GC (heís not going to be happy and will probably hate you after you do so). And then you do all the stuff yourself. Carpet I would not recommend doing, but you can find a guy to install it cheap (labor only) and you get the carpet at a major discount, tile is easy, hanging cabinets is easy, trim work....eh, I find it easy but some people may not, finish plumbing is easy, finish electric is easy (installing lights/fans/shit like that) and again instead of paying a triple markup fo the materials youíre saving a shit ton of money. The only caveat is you have to have the time and the skill. If you donít have the time or canít commit to losing sleep and lots of it youíre not going to be able to pull it off. If you can commit the time then I canít see any other way to save that much cash. Oh and you can buy tools at direct buy too.....so if you run into something that needs a new tool then thatís a bonus too! Everyone likes tools!
Agreed, you have to be able to do stuff yourself. If you can't, you will be buried.

I'm surprised to see Direct buy being recommended. Direct buy is/was a scam and was shut down several years ago. I'm glad to see that it actually worked out for you. I don't think they exist anymore with that ridiculous buy in price and weird pricing structure that they forced onto people.
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Old 07-12-2018, 11:40 AM   #34
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Agreed, you have to be able to do stuff yourself. If you can't, you will be buried.

I'm surprised to see Direct buy being recommended. Direct buy is/was a scam and was shut down several years ago. I'm glad to see that it actually worked out for you. I don't think they exist anymore with that ridiculous buy in price and weird pricing structure that they forced onto people.
Maybe youíre thinking of something else? Theyíre still there. Iíll have to admit I was super skeptical at first because of the buy in price and the presentation was ďscam-ishĒ, like the fact that you went to the presentation and if you didnít buy in that day then you couldnít return. Tracey was referred to the place by a co worker though and she swore that it was worth it so I bit on it. Like I said before, it doesnít make any sense whatsoever to get involved in it if youíre a homeowner whose going to do a floor this year, maybe upgrade the bathroom next year, maybe re-do the kitchen after the kids go to school.......itís for someone who needs a lot of stuff over a short period of time. And not one time did we have a problem with ordering, delivery or return......the only issue we ever had was they offered a kitchen design and this lady that worked there was completely inept.....seriously not sure if she knew which end of the tape measure to use. We were supposed to have a periscope vent over our stove and she fucked up the measurements so when the countertop guy (through direct buy) came to measure the cabinets for the counter top he told us it wasnít going to fit. I already had the periscope vent in my possession for a while. I called them and explained what happened, they bought back the vent from me no questions asked......

I think what happens when people say ďoh thatís a scamĒ is they buy in and then just donít use it.....which, well, is their fault. Like I wouldnít buy into a country club....looks like a scam....pay money to walk around on someoneís grass with a stick? Fucking ridiculous!
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Old 07-12-2018, 01:12 PM   #35
SkinnyR
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Maybe youíre thinking of something else? Theyíre still there. Iíll have to admit I was super skeptical at first because of the buy in price and the presentation was ďscam-ishĒ, like the fact that you went to the presentation and if you didnít buy in that day then you couldnít return. Tracey was referred to the place by a co worker though and she swore that it was worth it so I bit on it. Like I said before, it doesnít make any sense whatsoever to get involved in it if youíre a homeowner whose going to do a floor this year, maybe upgrade the bathroom next year, maybe re-do the kitchen after the kids go to school.......itís for someone who needs a lot of stuff over a short period of time. And not one time did we have a problem with ordering, delivery or return......the only issue we ever had was they offered a kitchen design and this lady that worked there was completely inept.....seriously not sure if she knew which end of the tape measure to use. We were supposed to have a periscope vent over our stove and she fucked up the measurements so when the countertop guy (through direct buy) came to measure the cabinets for the counter top he told us it wasnít going to fit. I already had the periscope vent in my possession for a while. I called them and explained what happened, they bought back the vent from me no questions asked......

I think what happens when people say ďoh thatís a scamĒ is they buy in and then just donít use it.....which, well, is their fault. Like I wouldnít buy into a country club....looks like a scam....pay money to walk around on someoneís grass with a stick? Fucking ridiculous!
I guess they do still exist. There was a Direct Buy here in Rocky Hill next to one of my companies warehouses, it closed a couple of years ago. That is about the time I looked into them. They went bankrupt I guess.

Online search just now shows they restructured to online only;

Membership terms

Starting in 2016, DirectBuy began to shift from its store-based model to a focus on e-commerce.[1][10] Also in 2016, the company expanded beyond home products into electronics, sporting goods, and travel.[14] As of February 2017, DirectBuy has approximately 200,000 members in the US.[2][10] As of January 2018, the annual membership rates have been reduced to about $1,000 for the first year and $300 per year after that, although the company must be contacted to provide the exact rates.[13]
Prior to 2016, membership costs varied by franchise location, typically costing between $4,000 and $7,000 for a standard three-year membership and then around $200 per year for ensuing years.[6][10][15][16] Customers were pressured to decide at the time of the open house visit, before leaving the showroom, whether to join DirectBuy after receiving a presentation of services in which they could purchase home furnishings and other household items "at the same prices that the retailers pay."[17] In return for paying the membership fee, members were able to purchase home furnishing items directly from manufacturers or authorized suppliers.[18] In 2013, the company launched a new website, added trial memberships, and began touting a more transparent, customer-friendly style.[6][19] It also began offering travel deals, launching DirectBuy Travel in 2014.[6]
A 2007 review by Consumer Reports stated, "the lack of price transparency makes it hard to evaluate whether you'll save by joining DirectBuy. But even if you were to save 25 percent on purchases after joining, youíd need to spend more than $20,000 just to recoup your membership fee. DirectBuy might save you money if you're furnishing a house from scratch or doing a major renovation" but "since you can't shop around beforehand, you'll be joining blind."[17][20] Consumer Reports also found that prices for items such as electronics were, in some instances, higher than available from online retailers; the "deep discounts" were found on flooring and high-end furniture.[15][16][17] Despite the high fees, DirectBuy reported that 75% of its customers renewed their memberships in 2009.[21]

An alternative to something like this would be to open an account at a supply house. You will get builders pricing that way, which is much less than what you'd pay for off the shelf Home Depot.
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Old 07-12-2018, 03:42 PM   #36
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This post is probably going to be a little scatter brained, mostly because I'm not great at getting my ideas onto paper.

Alright, so here's the deal. I'd like to find a smallish house (<1,000 sq ft) with like a three car garage or some shit. Basically, I want room to park my car, have room to work on a few bikes, and room for a golf simulator bay (lol) and room for a decent home gym (squat rack, treadmill, etc.)

I spent a solid 4-5 hours last night looking at what's available on the market and what ends up coming back is a bunch of cookie cutter condos.

It's looking like building is going to probably be the way to go. I remember Tony's thread from a while back (New House Journey - Band Of Riders) that had some pretty decent floor plans for what seems like could be an ideal setup.

If I end up building, I think I'll end up buying an acre or two somewhere and then leaving room to build a full house afterward.

I guess the point of the thread.... any suggestions on floor plans? Suggestions for fit and finish?
You basically want Kitt's house in Vermont...
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Old 07-12-2018, 06:23 PM   #37
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You basically want Kitt's house in Vermont...
Haha didn't even think about that. Solid Moto track.
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Old 07-13-2018, 06:12 AM   #38
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Youíre dream house is out there, you just have to be patient. Iím on my second and built my first house, and currently renovating my current house. Building and renovating are very expensive and time consuming.
It cost me $110k to build my first house with me being the GC and doing the actual work, so very low labor costs. Current house I have about $80k into the renovation and only 75% done, again, no actual labor costs other than my time.
I only bought my current place for the land (153 acres) and the 200 year old farm house was an added bonus. Both my first house and current, are less than 1500 sqft.
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Old 07-13-2018, 06:26 AM   #39
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Youíre dream house is out there, you just have to be patient. Iím on my second and built my first house, and currently renovating my current house. Building and renovating are very expensive and time consuming.
It cost me $110k to build my first house with me being the GC and doing the actual work, so very low labor costs. Current house I have about $80k into the renovation and only 75% done, again, no actual labor costs other than my time.
I only bought my current place for the land (153 acres) and the 200 year old farm house was an added bonus. Both my first house and current, are less than 1500 sqft.
If you factor in what your first house would have cost if you had a GC run the whole project, would you still have come out ahead in any meaningful way financially?
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Old 07-13-2018, 08:17 AM   #40
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If you factor in what your first house would have cost if you had a GC run the whole project, would you still have come out ahead in any meaningful way financially?

It cost me $270k to buy the land and build the house. I spent another $25k two years later to build a garage. When I sold it in 2016, I got the high end of comps , $345k. Thereís no way a GC would have been able to do the entire project for $50k, so it would have been a loss if I used a GC.

In my opinion, the only way to at least break even having a new house built, is by finding a GC that builds spec houses, but that is not even close to what youíre looking for.
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