Owner Build DIY?

Tegguy

Well-known member
Oct 27, 2019
197
Winter Garden FL
Just curious for those of you who have done the owner build what portions of it did you choose to do yourself? Trying to find places that I can possibly cut cost without impacting quality and I don't know the good areas. I know each person will be different due to skill sets and stuff.
 

wilkj1

Gold Supporter
Bronze Supporter
Nov 27, 2017
175
okc/okla
what ya plan on building ? what skills do you feel comfortable with ? landscaping using a small bobcat to back fill or haul off dirt helping with plumbing to pool i dont mess with code stuff tho doing pool deck is a way i saved (i have been in structural concrete/ flat work for 40 years tho) i still had shell and plaster done by pros
 

Tegguy

Well-known member
Oct 27, 2019
197
Winter Garden FL
what ya plan on building ? what skills do you feel comfortable with ? landscaping using a small bobcat to back fill or haul off dirt helping with plumbing to pool i dont mess with code stuff tho doing pool deck is a way i saved (i have been in structural concrete/ flat work for 40 years tho) i still had shell and plaster done by pros
Well that's a good question. I consider my self a jack of all trades type of person and have no problem trying stuff. I was thinking about doing the backfill but it's a cost vs savings thing and I have someone who said around $500 for the backfill and pre-grade and it would cost me about that to rent the equipment. I am going to offer to help the plumber/electrician/ and tile person to see if I can shave some money off by helping them.

I was thinking about trying to do part of the electrical work myself (I already have to run the conduit from the panel). I was thinking about doing the footer/retaining (turndown wall) but I'm having conflicting information on that and don't know if it should be concrete block on top of a footer or do a full poured wall.
 

Tegguy

Well-known member
Oct 27, 2019
197
Winter Garden FL
Sorry forgot to answer the other part of your question. Here is a pic of the pool and patio the summer kitchen will come later. I have already done the trees and rock along the back fence.
 

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SinCityCJ

Gold Supporter
Nov 6, 2019
95
Las Vegas
Doing an OB, it’s your pool and your project to manage. You select and hire subs as needed, you deal with municipal inspections, permits, spoils & trash, spec and select materials, finishes, equipment, schedule the work and supervise what you pay for. It’s a lot of work. On saving money, once you have selected subs, you can ask if they will work with you on price by offering to do some of the prep work. If you have the skills, then I would say explore the areas you feel confident in completing to save some cash. However, you will need time, Cash, tools and manpower at your disposal. I am an avid diy guy & work as a construction Manager for a GC. I have a decent skill in a variety of fields and both my neighbor and I have construction contacts, so it was pretty easy there. On the flip side, as an OB, you are competing with PBs for subs, so you will almost always take a back seat in terms of scheduling. Once spring hit, everyone got real busy so it added to the lead times. Just plan accordingly.

On the turndown, the designer spec’d cmu for raised beam & deck areas to reduce costs. Our engineer preferred concrete either with the pool or later with steel done initially. We did the math and while block was a little less, it added a build step to the process. We also considered the finish tile connecting to two different surfaces and the issues with expansion, cracking, etc... We opted to shoot the beam and raised walls with the shell and IMO that was the best as once shell was done, its one monolithic block of cement.

We are about wrapping 2 OBs up, both get plaster in a couple days. As a joint project, we did the all the back fill, grading, rough & finish electric, decks, pavers , flat work, finish gas work, and we will build the kitchens, fireplaces, etc... We paid Subs for excavation, steel, plumbing, shell, tile and plaster. I’m ahead about 30% overall of what my PB bids were, and we added some upgrades along the way. That said, it’s a lot of time and money to put in. If I paid myself I would be in the red by hundreds of hours of labor. But we knew that going in.
 

Neto

Well-known member
Jun 10, 2019
233
Puerto Rico
With a lot of research anything is possible. I am in the process of pool build #2 and here are some of the phases. Make sure you find out what permits need to be done where you live, on my pool build #1, there were mostly site, fencing and electrical but where I am now, nothing is needed... Here are some of the phases:

1. Planning (construction plan, design, sourcing materials, etc).
2. Permits
3. Excavation & Haul away (you usually dig 1 foot more deeper than what you want, gunite is 6" and waterline is 6")
4. Rebar
5. Plumbing & Equipment Install
6. Electrical
7. Gunite or Shootcrete
8. Tile and Coping
9. Decking
10. Landscaping / regrading, etc
11. Plaster
 

Desert Dog

Well-known member
Apr 4, 2020
203
Alpine, Ca
A few months ago I finished my second OB pool. What made my life easier the second go around was i found there are people who will handle the plans/permits for you. For a small fee, the came to my house, gathered information, and returned a week later with permit in hand. If you do OB make sure you can be on site for all stages of the build. Your in charge and you will have to make decisions as things can and most likely will arise.

What did I do? Demo, lots of cement demo to existing patio. All the electric work, and drainage. Everything else, sub-contract.