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Build a house yourself: How much work is possible?

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Building the dream house with your own hands - it not only feels good, but can also save costs. But watch out: Being your own builder is not something for everyone.

Build a house completely yourself

There is something romantic about the idea: you build your house with your own hands, put stone on stone yourself and experience first hand how it grows in height, how the shell becomes a home. However, the reality is a little more complex. Building a house entirely on your own is essential a lot of knowledge ahead. They have to be able to or learn everything from the basement to the roof. That costs a lot of time - and in some areas it is not enough just to read the knowledge.
The years of experience a craftsman has in laying pipes is difficult to acquire. Even if you try: Some jobs, for example the electrical installation, can be dangerous. If you make a mistake here, you are putting yourself and others at risk. Such a mistake is not necessarily immediately apparent. A leaking heating pipe can go undetected for a while, but the repair is then all the more expensive. In contrast to a craftsman's service, in this case you bear the repair costs - you do not have a warranty claim for self-construction. While you generally have lower costs when building a house yourself, problems like this can quickly drive the price up.
Incidentally, you cannot build a house in Germany entirely by yourself. At least during the planning and the building application it is necessary to have a Consult an architect or civil engineer. Only these specialists have a building permit, without which you cannot submit a building application. A structural engineer is also often necessary.

Bring in your own work

When it comes to the question of whether you can build your own house, there is no clear yes or no. If you are technically skilled, there is nothing wrong with performing certain services yourself instead of hiring an expert. These own contributions can be taken into account in the construction financing and make them cheaper. One speaks in this context of the "Muscle mortgage“.
However, builders often overestimate their own work. Often, not only is there a lack of basic skills, but they also often estimate too little time for the work. They forget that they may take longer than a skilled craftsman. Remember that you need to do the work in addition to your other day-to-day duties. Can you manage to be regularly on the construction site in addition to work, family life and free time? If you have a stressful phase at work or if you are ill for a long time, the progress of the construction project is in jeopardy. Problems can arise, especially when your own work is interlinked with the activities of professional craftsmen. If you cannot keep up with your tasks, the specialists will not be able to meet their deadlines, and house construction will be delayed.
So if you want to do your own work, think carefully about which ones you will take on and how much time you plan to do. You should do some work generally left to the professionals. This includes, for example, electrical installations, laying pipes and covering the roof. Other tasks, depending on your personal skills, are more likely to be taken on yourself.

Own work for less experienced craftsmen

  • Painting and wallpapering
  • Lay floors, e.g. B. Laminate, parquet, carpet or PVC and tiles
  • Drywall
  • build a garden
  • Remove the roof

Own work for experienced craftsmen

  • Working on the shell
  • Install windows and doors
  • Build stairs
  • Plastering
  • Install sanitary facilities

Don't forget the right insurance when doing trades

Building the house yourself - whether completely or partially - is also associated with dangers. Whether kicking a nail or falling off a ladder - many traps lurk on the construction site. What you should definitely pay attention to when building a house yourself is your security and that of your helpers. A private accident insurance supports you as the client financially in the worst-case scenario. If your spouse or partner helps, this should also be privately covered. If relatives, friends or neighbors support you, you must also insure them against accidents at work on your construction site. To do this, report them to the Trade Association of the Construction Industry (BG Bau) and pay a small contribution for each helper's hour.
If you are helping to build the house yourself, you cannot afford to fail. Certain personal contributions have to be finished before the professionals can get down to work. It is even more critical when the client dies. In this case, an income is lost or the surviving partner no longer has time to build a house because he or she has to look after the children. So it is often not possible to continue doing your own work. The result: house construction is delayed or more expensive than expected. You should therefore take out term life insurance in good time. This supports your relatives financially if something should happen to you. Choose a sufficiently high sum insured so that enough leeway remains so that planned in-house work can be carried out by professionals.

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