5 tips on how to avoid busting your budget when building your home

Written by 
Bill Tsouvalas
Bill Tsouvalas is the managing director and a key company spokesperson at Savvy. As a personal finance expert, he often shares his insights on a range of topics, being featured on leading news outlets including News Corp publications such as the Daily Telegraph and Herald Sun, Fairfax Media publications such as the Australian Financial Review, the Seven Network and more. Bill has over 15 years of experience working in the finance industry and founded Savvy in 2010 with a vision to provide affordable and accessible finance options to all Australians. He has built Savvy from a small asset finance brokerage into a financial comparison website which now attracts close to 2 million Aussies per year and was included in the BRW’s Fast 100 in 2015 as one of the fastest-growing companies in the country. He’s passionate about helping Australians make financially savvy decisions and reviews content across the brand to ensure its accuracy. You can follow Bill on LinkedIn.
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, updated on June 6th, 2023       

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You may have the blueprint of your dream home stamped in your mind and the desire to build something that fits your style and needs, but when it comes to building a home the last thing that you want is for your budget to go bust midway through the project. Here are five tips that can help you build your home and avoid busting your budget.

1. Get a professional builder

Unless if you are a qualified builder yourself that has been in the industry for years, it’s advisable to get a professional builder who has a proven track record of building successful projects. Not only will they be able to give you a more accurate time frame and cost that will be involved when it comes to completing your project, but it can also save you on facing a huge price tag in unexpected costs. Always remember to compare various quotes to find the best deal rate for a professional builder.

2. Have the site you plan on building on assessed

The cost of building a house vary on many factors such as; where you plan on building your house, the material that’s needed, how big you plan on making your property and more. To build a basic project home can cost you anything between $620 – $780 square metre and for a custom built house you could fork out anything between $1,500 – $3,000 per square metre.

Before you build, you may need to call in a land surveyor who will help you assess if the land that you plan on building your house on will be suitable or will it need special treatment to make building property possible. This can help you create a realistic budget that will help buffer such expenses.

3. Get your architect and builder to work together

To protect your budget from going bust, it is essential that your architect and builder are on the same page. These are two people who will play an integral role when it comes to building your dream home. However, your builder and architect have different ways of viewing the building of estimating the costs of building a house because their eyes are trained to see costs according to their specialisations. Getting both great minds in one room can ensure that you do not underestimate the cost of building your dream house and that all aspects are covered.

4. Build what you can afford

It is no fun building a champagne taste house on a beer budget. Even if you are able to take out a home loan to cover your taste for the finer things, it is essential to assess if you will be able to afford your home in the long run. According to Macro Business, more than 966,000 Australian households have mortgage stress. Biting off more than you can choose can eventually lead to you a debt spiral.

5. Other expenses

Other additional expenses that come with custom designing your home are the cost of materials, hiring labour and a project manager to name a few. Also, consider the time frame in which it will take to complete the building of your home. The longer it takes the costlier it will become. Therefore, it is vital to hire someone who will have an accurate time frame and sticks to it.

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