Re: [C-L] Common house design, rooms, and room sizes?
From: R Philip Dowds (
Date: Tue, 10 Feb 2015 05:21:47 -0800 (PST)
What you “save” by postponing finishing some spaces you are likely to spend on 
the “extras” of splitting your job into small pieces.

For people with time, energy and skills, self-finishing an interior can be a 
way to save cash and share in a rewarding group achievement.  But let’s face 
it:  The cost of finishing up a rough interior is only a small percentage of 
total project costs, which inevitably include land, design and engineering, 
permitting and legal instruments, site development, foundation, superstructure 
and weatherizing envelope.  Most communities and projects will not find 
self-finishing to be the difference between go and no go.

And if your unfinished common house stays unfinished for several years, this 
can be a real drag on both your enjoyment and the continuing marketing effort.


PS:  I will say again: If you are looking for economical construction and 
long-term operations, shun single families and duplexes.  Instead, put everyone 
into two or three multi-family structures.  This is absolutely guaranteed to 
save on site development and building construction costs.  But … will it 
support a lifestyle you can accept?

> On Feb 9, 2015, at 9:00 AM, Peter Goldstein <peterhansgoldstein [at] 
>> wrote:
> There is some appeal in the idea of roughing in extra space that we could
> finish after the fact. If anyone has tried this idea:
> - Does it save a lot of money up front?
> - How did you finance finishing it later on?
> - General feelings?
> - Peter

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