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Building on a Shoestring Budget PDF Print E-mail
Tuesday, 12 February 2008

Owner Builder CottageDr. Johan Dippenaar, one of our readers, sent me these amazing pics of a little cottage he built on his smallholding at a cost of R500.00 per sq. metre - this was about three years ago - but it just goes to show with some ingenuity and lots of scouting around for good prices and great ideas, you can build something really pretty and very functional at a fraction of the cost.

Johan's tips:

We make our own blocks - not difficult. You can buy the moulds.

Owner BuilderWe make our own lintels - pack blocks in a row, line the space with damp
course, put enough wire length wise for reinforcement [about 6 lengths],
pour concrete in and leave for a few days to dry.

We don't plaster, joints just to be smoothed with a sponge or block brush.

No skirting or cornices, they just add to the price!

Paint with Cemcrete, you probably never have to paint again. We used
Cemcrete inside too.

Owner BuilderCeilings as on the picture from a supplier who supplies crates to the car
trade, very cheap, about 18 mm thick pressed wood, acts as an insulation too,
so you will not be needing that.

Small kitchen counter with shutter board, with 2 layers of good varnish.

No bath, just a shower, it's cheaper. And use plastic shower curtains!

If any of our other readers have great tips to add to this, please let us know, owner builders are always looking for ways to keep the costs down.

Last Updated ( Tuesday, 12 February 2008 )
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