Housing: Building Your Own House While Earning Little


Building your own house has a way of reducing pressure and stress from your life.
Majority of our monthly expenses go into housing/rent.

Building a house in Nigeria seems like a dream that can only be achieved by the rich; in a way it may be true but if you have a little earning then you will need a lot of disciple to save money, plan very well and to hire the right people to do the work for you to be able to build your own house.

The purpose of this article is to demystify the cost of building a house in Nigeria as much as possible. We will be discussing on the various steps to take in building your own house.
A lot of people who would like to build their own home are many times deterred because they are earning very little salaries.

Ensure you have a land:
It is always advisable to involve a lawyer in the process of buying a land. Prices of land varies depending on the location of the land, the locations on the outskirts of the city are cheaper than those in central part of the city.

Depending on your current income level, you can pick a land from the low cost areas and when your financial level increases you can always get another one in the central area of the city you live in.

A plot of land (15m x 30m that is 50ft by 100ft) is enough to accommodate a 3bedroom bungalow.

Get a decent design from a professional:
I would strongly recommend that you work with professionals in drafting your building plan, costing of the project and in the construction process of the building. There are many advantages you gain from working with professionals, a badly designed would means a future renovation that would cost you more than what you are trying to save now by engaging the services of non-professionals.

You can always contact me for advice and how to proceed in acquiring sound professionals for your project.

For a 3 bedroom bungalow, here are the few elements that can be found in it.
• Living room
• Dining room
• 3 bedrooms
• 3 toilets
• Kitchen
• Store (optional)

Cost for the foundation (sub-structure) works:
The construction of a building is not a sprint race but it can be referred to as a relay race, you don’t need to have all the money required to complete the work before starting. You can start by buying the materials needed for the very stage of the construction work that you are about to start.

For the foundation work [that is from the foundation footing to damp-proof course (DPC)], we are going to list out the materials and their costs. Note that the prices are just a rough estimate so the current prices should be verified before starting your construction. The prices for the materials and labour may differ from location to location.

• Buy two 20 tons tipper of granite @ N60,000 = N120,000.
• Buy five 20 tons tipper of sharp sand @ N20,000 = N100,000
• 150 bags of cement @ N2500 = N375,000
• 1000 blocks @ N150 = N150,000
• Labour = N150,000

Estimated total cost for the foundation works is #895,000.
You may not need to have all the money before you can start, you can start by first buying the materials and after that you can start the construction.
Cost for the super-structure works:

This is the next stage you start planning for once you have finished the foundation works, the super-structure is typically the work above the foundation.

• You will need roughly about 3000 blocks (3m high) @ #150 = N450,000
• You will need to buy roughly about fifteen trips of sharp sand @ N20,000 = N300,000
• 50 bags of cement @ N2500 = N125,000
• Labour = N150,000

Estimated total cost for the super-structure works is #1,025,000.

Cost for the roofing works:
This is the next stage
• Roof truss = N450,000 (including workmanship)
• Roof sheet = N300,000 (long span roofing sheet)
• ceiling = N200,000

Estimated total cost for the roofing works is #950,000.

Cost for the finishing works:

This is one of the most expensive stages of construction but with proper planning, you can easily carry out the process.

• plastering (includes cements, sand and labour) = N450,000
• Floor tiles (includes tiles, cements, sand and labour) = N300,000
• Painting (includes paint and labour) = N300,000
• Doors (it could be less or more depending on the type/make) = N250,000
• windows (it could be less or more depending on the type/make) =N250,000
• Electrical works = N250,000
• Plumbing works = N100,000

Estimated total cost for the finishing works is #1,900,000.

Now the total rough estimate for building a 3bedroom bungalow will be approximately five million naira. Please note that all this figures are rough estimates but for proper consultation on the exact cost of building your dream home and all the construction processes then you can always contact us.

In conclusion, it is possible to build your dream house no matter the level of your income, all you need to do is first to acquire a land and then break down the project into small manageable unit, and after that you can start saving for each one of the stages without worrying about the whole project.

Olodu keonyedi – is a trained engineer and by passion and personal development a public/motivational speaker, a business coach and human capacity developer, he has a B.Eng degree in Civil Engineering from the University of Nigeria Nsukka, he is a member of Nigeria Society of Engineer and a COREN registered Engineer.

Email: olodukeonyedi@gmail.com Tel: 08037489704, www.instagram.com/sir_keon.

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