At QTF Homes we love working with our clients and their families to help design and build beautiful timber frame homes. It is one of the reasons why we strive to help self builders achieve their dreams and we understand for any new builder (apart from the fortunate few) a set budget is required to achieve this. A budget will be set to correlate with the size of the house you wish to build, taking into consideration building costs, annual running costs and rates to name a few to ensure you are financially able to build and run your dream home.

To help you achieve this we have put together a self build money saving guide which will offer you some insight into areas which can help you save on the cost of building your dream home:

Build a two-story

The two most expensive parts of any house are the foundation and the roof. When you build two stories, you can double the floor area while halving the costly square footage of the foundation and the roof.

QTF Homes Top Tip for affordable build: For a timber frame build you can foundations are simplified and more cost effective because internal walls are not load bearing therefore less concrete is required within the foundation in comparison to a traditional block build.

Think inside the box:

Although timber frames offer the ability for complex designs, the least expensive homes are simple rectangles and squares.

QTF Homes Top Tip for affordable build: You can add curb appeal with great colors and a few attractive architectural flourishes, such as great front porch.

Keep the roof simple:

Complex roof lines not only add significant cost, but the risk of future leaks. A simple, not too steep roof will protect your investment over time.

QTF Homes Top Tip for affordable build: Choosing Tiles for your roof are much more affordable than slate and we recommend you price around.

Schedule your build with a completion date

Working to a completion date and sticking to it will help you to ensure your work to within your budget. Timber frame builders are 30% faster than conventional method and they can be erected within three to five days after being delivered to site. This provides buildings the opportunity to save on construction and operation costs as they are quicker to build, reducing hours of labour hence reducing costs.

QTF Homes Top Tip for affordable build: Know how long your construction workers will be on-site to work labour costs into your budget. Electricians – no tracking require, Plumbers – no tracking required, Bricklayers – 50% less work required. Joiners – all panels/structures are accurately made in the factory and therefore easier and quicker to construct together

The following guides and tips are internal building areas to think about in the early stages to ensure you are building a more affordable home!

Centralize the plumbing: Make sure to plan your heavy plumbing areas, including kitchen, laundry room, and bathrooms in close proximity to each other, reducing the cost of running costly plumbing pipes all over the house.

QTF Homes Top Tip for affordable build: Get your architect to alter your plans or speak to them at design stage – it cuts out a lot of experience costs if they are not needed.

Heating costs

At the moment the average home heating, fuel and electricity bills costs are between £800.00- £950.00 per annum, but a timber-frame house costs are estimated at £270.00 a year to heat due to the nature of the material and installation.

QTF Homes Top Tip for affordable build: Help improve your energy costs, think about installing a wood-burning stove and back boiler which will help with heating your home and water saving you more on heat costs.

Spend more on insulation

A well sealed and insulated house will not only save energy in the long run, it will save you money today by reducing the amount you must spend on larger heating and air-conditioning equipment and while efficient thermal insulation is undoubtedly the key elements in preventing heat loss within a home, problem areas exist at the joints where surfaces such as walls, roofs, windows and doors meet. By achieving the A3 BER ratings , a timber frame build from QTF Homes will save you money on your long term heating costs. Reducing oil and heating costs year on year. We do this by ensuring the joints are airtight to prevent all draughts that may enter the structure.

QTF Homes Top Tip for affordable build: Find out how much you need and buy the insulation in bulk, its surprising how much you can save here.

Mix and match

Don’t limit your appliance and fixture choices to one brand. It’s perfectly okay to combine brands to buy best-deal appliances and fixtures.

QTF Homes Top Tip for affordable build: Shop online! Look for online outlet stores and affordable online stores – we have heard great things about Victoria Plum online bathroom and plumbing store.

Ditch the Chimney

Chimneys are not generally needed these days (unless you really want an open fire). They are expensive to build and, because they stick out from the side wall, can significantly reduce the internal floor area of your house (especially if you are building on a narrow plot). By doing without one you can save £2-8,000.

QTF Homes Top Tip for affordable build: You can install a wood burning stove in properties without a chimney. Stovax has designed a twin-wall flue pipe system – the Stovax Professional XQ, range – which allows rooms without chimneys to enjoy the benefits of a wood burning stove.

Utilise the attic space

By making use of the attic you can increase your usable floor area and value by up to 40% at minimal extra cost. Attic trusses will actually cost £1-3,000 more than standard trusses, but in this case it’s worth it.

QTF Homes Top Tip for affordable build: By installing your attic trusses you can convert your upstairs attic at a later stage when you are requiring additional space or your family grows in size.

Keep landscaping simple

Turf the gardens: Turf starts at around £1.20/m2 and each ‘sod’ has its own bit of topsoil on the back of it. To turf all your garden areas, just level, rake to remove stones then roll — and get the turf ordered. An average garden area can be transformed for less than £500.

QTF Homes Top Tip for affordable build: Pathways and even your driveway can be finished in gravel to give a very pleasing finish. There are many types and colours to choose from and you can mix and match to create some nice effects.

We hope you have found our self build money saver guide helpful and would love to speak to you about your upcoming project here at QTF Homes. To see more reasons why you should choose to build your home using a timber frame kit see our benefits page here and for questions visit our Frequency asked questions page FAQ or email with any questions. We provide free quotes on request, please send Raymond you house plans for a quote today.