Even though my family built the first house that I lived in, the days of people constructing their own homes sounds like a bygone era. I feel like a successful carpenter if I manage to keep a tiny shelf nailed in the wall. It’s hard to imagine sleeping under a roof assembled by my own hands, though the idea of sustainable and off the grid living does appeal to me. At least one startup, DIY Wood Buildings, sees many reasons why more of us should pick up a hammer again.
DIY Wood Buildings (or Do It Yourself) sells plans and instructions for building simple wood buildings. The DIY building plans are for basic, highly-functional and energy efficient constructions. High quality drawings and step-by-step installation instructions promise that those without professional skills can experience the satisfaction of building a usable structure by hand.
Plans available for purchase currently include a greenhouse, an outdoor Nordic sauna building (which can be adjusted to function instead as a guest house, home office, or “granny annexe”), and even affordable homes. There are three different home kits to choose from, with plans for building carports and barbecue roofs slated to arrive soon.
DIYwoodbuildings.com claims that two people should manage to erect and weatherproof the sauna in as little time as a weekend. Building yourself following the instructions and lists of building materials might save buyers as much as 40% on traditional construction costs.
Available kits include the following items:
- 3D drawings for the foundation, framing, insulation, etc.
- Step-by-step assembly instructions
- Lists of tools and materials required
- Project budgets
DIY Wood Buildings sees itself as an affordable housing solution in several markets throughout the world. At the moment, it’s difficult to both obtain and then pay for a standard mortgage. Land is scarce in many locations, not to mention incredibly expensive. Utility costs show no sign of going down. When these home ownership obstacles are taken into account, a compact and energy efficient timber frame home makes a lot of economic sense.
At the moment, designs and instructions are downloadable. The early stage startup is also hard at work to eventually provide made-to-order kit deliveries and kits for sale at wholesale outlets. CEO and founder Indrek Kuldkepp has been in the wood house business for 14 years. He’s also started two other companies, Ganttic (computer software) and WoodWare systems.
Opportunities for self-starters abound. DIY Wood Buildings looks to grow its team as well create both a sales network and new marketplaces for DIY kits. For the rugged individualists, DIY WB offers off the grid living options. The homes are predesigned for self-sustainable power generators, which helps them achieve energy efficiency where other models prove unfeasible. For more information about DIY Wood Buildings, visit them at DIYWoodBuildings.com.