scuttlebramblebee

Material cost increases and m2 estimates

Recommended Posts

Hello. Apologies for this far-from-novel question - I can’t find it directly answered anywhere. I’m aware costs have shot up lately due to covid/brexit, but I’m seeing (in self-build groups) people asking if £1200 per metre is possible for total build costs, and others shutting down the idea as ridiculous, saying it’s more likely £2k-3k. This is disheartening to me with aspirations of beginning a build in the next year or so - but also baffling - so these people are spending ~£300k on a 100m2 house, plus land costs?! Who are these people? I struggle to understand how this would even make financial sense, as in many places a house of that size would not be worth the ~£400k it would presumably have cost with land, and that’s leaving aside the fact people say self-building is supposed to save (30%?) on equivalent pre-built house cost. 

 

I’m looking to build a well-insulated rectangular 1.5 storey of max 120m2 (I had planned for basement, but heard this can be expensive in Scotland), no marble bathrooms, designer kitchens or massive glazed entrances, no dormer windows or other sticky out bits, but using natural plasters and reclaimed things where possible without compromising on u values. I am not a builder and will need to pay tradespeople, but do have a builder in the family who may be able to help a bit. 

 

Based in in rural central belt of Scotland. If anyone could shed any light on what I might need to do to get the costs down, it’d be much appreciated. Thanks very much! 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

So much depends on the site, groundworks, utilities connections etc. as well as finishes.

 

If you can get the right contractor and your site is not too complex I think you can build a good standard house in Scotland for £1,700m2 without touching a nail gun. Plus cost of plot.

 

I would be surprised if you can do it for less than that without doing a chunk of work yourself.

 

Edited by Ralph

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I empathise with your concerns as I'm in the process of buying a plot for my 2nd self build (see my previous post for details).  I'm currently considering removing the attached garage, which is perpendicular to the main structure, in order to help the budget.  I'm budgeting for  £1400 psm including fees, prelims & landscaping -  self-managing but not labouring.  Build will be timber frame, facing walls in brick, upvc windows & concrete roof tiles - so nothing fancy.  Mains gas available near edge of plot along with other services.  So I feel it's doable but time will tell!

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Price per m2 is a rough guide at best and it can be heavily weighted by finish ie 2 exact same houses of 100m2 and someone puts in a 10k kitchen and someone puts in a 50k kitchen there you have a £400 per m2 difference alone. It's also relative to how much work you're going to do yourself. 

I am building a 320m2 house in northern Ireland and expect to be in it minus landscaping at circa £650per m2 after my future brother in law completing a similar sized house for circa £550 per m2 last year.

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

It is still possible to keep under a 1000 m2 As already stated 

Ground conditions availability of services 

Keeping professional fees down 

and of course Do as much of the Labour yourself 

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
53 minutes ago, scuttlebramblebee said:

.... If anyone could shed any light on what I might need to do to get the costs down, it’d be much appreciated. Thanks very much! 

 

Some of the answers you obtain will be measured in cost per square meter. 

You might like to take this thread into account when reading the answers.

 

Oh, how rude of me:      welcome 😁

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
1 hour ago, Ralph said:

So much depends on the site, groundworks, utilities connections etc. as well as finishes.

 

If you can get the right contractor and your site is not too complex I think you can build a good standard house in Scotland for £1,700m2 without touching a nail gun. Plus cost of plot.

 

I would be surprised if you can do it for less than that without doing a chunk of work yourself.

 

Ralph - thanks for your help. I'm learning that groundworks/service connections etc seem to be a huge cost factor. I've come across a few plots at the right price with groundworks already completed and/or services on-site, and one with no possibility of connecting to mains services.. They tend to be in the middle of nowhere though. I guess the costs of attempting to go fully off-grid would normally negate any savings from not having to connect?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
1 hour ago, ToughButterCup said:

 

Some of the answers you obtain will be measured in cost per square meter. 

You might like to take this thread into account when reading the answers.

 

Oh, how rude of me:      welcome 😁

Thank you! Good to hear it's not always as simple as m2 calculations make it seem (...or if not good, it is at least interesting). Will follow.

I enjoy the wording of your question in that thread - it makes me want to ponder how geometry in building might be central to our understanding of the universe!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
1 hour ago, nod said:

It is still possible to keep under a 1000 m2 As already stated 

Ground conditions availability of services 

Keeping professional fees down 

and of course Do as much of the Labour yourself 

 

Thanks! I love it when people say this!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
2 minutes ago, scuttlebramblebee said:

Thanks! I love it when people say this!

Thanks 

Second one will be under a 1000m2 also 

We have better ground conditions than the first and no Heritage stuff to deal with 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
2 hours ago, shuff27 said:

I empathise with your concerns as I'm in the process of buying a plot for my 2nd self build (see my previous post for details).  I'm currently considering removing the attached garage, which is perpendicular to the main structure, in order to help the budget.  I'm budgeting for  £1400 psm including fees, prelims & landscaping -  self-managing but not labouring.  Build will be timber frame, facing walls in brick, upvc windows & concrete roof tiles - so nothing fancy.  Mains gas available near edge of plot along with other services.  So I feel it's doable but time will tell!

Best of luck - please keep us updated on how it goes and whether you manage to stick to that kind of cost.

Garage removal...sounds good! I find it difficult to get excited about garages or the cost they seem to add. But then again, I do not have a car.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
16 minutes ago, scuttlebramblebee said:

Best of luck - please keep us updated on how it goes and whether you manage to stick to that kind of cost.

Garage removal...sounds good! I find it difficult to get excited about garages or the cost they seem to add. But then again, I do not have a car.

 

We have 2 cars - in 40 years of car and home ownership I have never kept a car in a garage 🤔

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
1 hour ago, scuttlebramblebee said:

I guess the costs of attempting to go fully off-grid would normally negate any savings from not having to connect

Some people on here have gone for things like water bore holes because the price is less than connecting to mains £10k was a figure that comes to mind. Getting a sewage treatment plant is not too bad and a lot on here have them.

I think the real problem is power. Even supplementary solar can take a long time to recoup costs. 

Some of the issues we hit:

We have a water main running through our plot and it still cost £4k just to connect because it's a massive pipe and  high pressure, 15bar or something. We have trenching on top of that.

Electricity started out at £16k because they tried to get us to pay for a new pole and transformer. We argues that right down.

Some on here have had massive connection costs.

With groundworks we found an old river bed that test digs had missed. It would have added £50k to the foundation costs to build there so we moved the house and garage over a bit.

Still glad I started all this though!

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
2 hours ago, Ralph said:

Some people on here have gone for things like water bore holes because the price is less than connecting to mains £10k was a figure that comes to mind. Getting a sewage treatment plant is not too bad and a lot on here have them.

 Thats me...

I brought power from three fields away and had to have my own transformer- £18k. 

I'm also 400m from mains water. That would have been 30-50k to bring down a B road, so opted for a borehole (getting drilled next month) at a cost of 10-15k all said and done.

 

I have treatment ant too and will discharge into my own burn. 

These options made the plot viable for me. 

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

scuttlebramblebee, just be aware that many (perhaps most/all) of the people here who are building for less than £1K per m2 have done a significant amount of work themselves, have previous experience of self-build, have friends/family in the trade or built their house/bought their products before the recent increase in prices due to brexit/covid.

 

There is a huge difference on m2 costs between having those things to bring to your build and handing over a wad of cash to a main contractor to build a house for you. Where you are in the country can also change things significantly too (eg, NI is/was regarded as cheaper). The style of house (even if the same size) can change costs significantly too.

Edited by AliMcLeod
  • Thanks 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now