30 Aug 2011

Trade Secrets – Money Saving Tips for Home Builders

Posted by bcsands

building suppliesWhen you’re building or renovating your own home, money is an issue – there is never enough of it!

By getting familiar with your local building supply yard and using a few tricks of the trade that most builders are familiar with, you might be able to save some of that precious money and still have a beautiful new home.

Buy building supplies in bulk

Perhaps the most obvious way to save money! This is exactly the same principle as in the supermarket – most building supply yards will discount for larger quantities.

At the same time, think about the size of the trucks your yard uses to deliver. Would it be cheaper for you to get 6 tonnes of product delivered on one truck on the same day, rather than two 3 tonne trucks a week apart? Take care when it comes to product if you’re ordering a bulk delivery, though, not all products benefit from waiting weeks before they are used, which brings us to our next tip…

Timing is everything

Clever scheduling is a big money saver for the home builder. Most trades start work at 7am in the morning, so make sure your product is delivered as early as possible so they can get started. You don’t want your tradies sitting around waiting for product – and you don’t want your product sitting around waiting for tradies, while getting washed away by the rain or used as a toilet facility by the local cat community.

Look at the overall scheduling for your project as well. Keep all the different trades involved in your project in constant communication – excavator/steel fixer/concreter/bricklayer – everybody. Knowing what stage you are, and what comes next at any given time and communicating that to your team will help you complete the project in time and for the lowest possible cost.

Love your building products supplier

Get to know the company that you will be using for your building supplies. You need to know their range, their truck sizes and their pricing structure. Ask a few companies for quotes before you choose one – and do try to choose just one to work with. You will get to know them and they will get to know you and your needs. They may offer a discount if you promise to get all your supplies from them and/or react more quickly when you need supplies.

On-site money-saving tricks

If you are building a two-storey property, you would be astonished at the labour costs involved in carrying products to the upper storey – or in hiring a site crane to do this for you. Kill two birds with one stone by asking to have products delivered in bulk bags by a crane truck with a long enough reach to lift them on to your upper floor. The slightly higher costs in packaging product in this way will soon be offset by the savings on any other method of getting the product up there.

If possible, avoid an expensive concrete pump truck by using small concrete trucks known as MiniMix trucks. These trucks carry over 1m3 of pre-mixed concrete and are small enough to fit under car ports and can usually wend their way between the piles of bricks and debris that tend to litter sites to pour the concrete in the right place.

Get something for nothing

Many building supply yards carry a recycled filling product that is suitable for use as cheap filler. Essentially it’s waste – broken bricks and concrete and other debris. The good thing is – it’s either very low-cost or even free (if you pick it up – yards will charge for delivery). Some yards may even sort and size the product into 20mm minus or 40mm minus, for example. The downside is that this is not a quality product (what did you expect for free?!) and will contain foreign matter such as dirt, broken glass, wood and plastic.

Save money with our tips on building supplies and then relax in your new home!


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