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The Good, the Bad and the Ugly of Tiny Homes

tiny homes Sep 16, 2020

The following needs to be said and soon, before people keep wasting good money. I am about to unload on tiny homes, the good, the bad and the ugly. Are you ready?

Here's Good:

  • If it is not mobile, it is not good. The only thing good about a tiny home is that it can or should be mobile. The only real benefit to tiny homes is to get out of dodge with your entire home and be nomadic to find a better place. And if mobility is needed, why not just buy a cheep RV that you can easily resell? Even better, why not buy an Airstream trailer, restore it, and then resell it when done using it for a higher price? Airstream trailers consistently rank the highest in resale and are well designed (mostly aluminum) and they are great restoration projects. They require almost no maintenance and their design still outperforms even the best tiny home I have seen. 

The Bad:

  • Typically, tiny homes are 100 and 400 square feet, not much bigger than a hotel room. While there isn't a set...
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How to Get an Owner Builder Construction Loan


Owner builder loans are for borrowers wanting to build their own home without a general contractor. Banks and credit unions sometimes do not lend to owner builders, especially in low build areas where there is not a lot of construction taking place.

I want to give you my best advice in approaching lenders when it comes to owner building. 

First, get organized. Know what you qualify for first and then know the real cost to build in your area and then know the process.

  • Get qualified
  • Know the real cost per square foot
  • Know the process. 

I have a simple 11-module course that helps you through those three steps. This course includes single-page worksheets that tell you a lot of information, especially how much homes are being built for in your area based on square feet. If you are new to owner building, I would take this course. 

Now, if a bank will not qualify you without a General Contractor on board, here are the best solutions to deal with that. 


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The Secret to Getting Great Bids

Uncategorized Jul 21, 2020

A lot of general contractors are lazy. They use the same sub-contractors over and over. It's too much work to shop around every time they have a new build. This is how good-ole-boy clubs are created. They are created by people who hire the same people over and over. Breaking into that club can be hard. Many general contractors operate inside an informal club. This is the hard core truth. As owner builders, you cannot do this. You need to know the market better than this, which means you need to know the price and quality available in the market in order to make an informed decision. 

There are three things owner builders need to do to get great bids. The first is networking. As a general contractor, I have a website and a presence on a lot of social media. Enter Kelsch Construction on any search engine and you can see me at the top. I am also involved in a lot of business networks locally. The benefit is I have a big footprint and a lot of sub-contractors in many trades are...

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Time Is Running Out

Uncategorized Jun 09, 2020

I have discounted the Self-Managed Package upon the request of many.  This will surely help many get out of the Covid 19 funk and back to work.

Construction employs hundreds of people and it is the quickest way to get an economy started. The more construction that takes place, the better the economy. I live in an area where construction is the number one industry. It has been one of the fasted growing cities in America for the past 25 years. I have seen how powerful construction is to an economy. 

As you break ground, people and their spirits will be lifted. Construction activity has this effect on people, it has a way of getting people excited and even hopeful. Something new being built is activity to look forward to. Many will stop by your construction site to talk and many more will stop by to ask if you need a bid on something or any work done. 

What I am saying is that building is the best way to get to know people. You become a networker. Once a man...

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Let Me Inspire You to Owner Build

Uncategorized May 18, 2020

I get a lot of people telling me, "I am not sure if I can be my own general contractor."

I then ask a very basic question, "are you an American?"

They typically say "Yes."

Ok, then do you know what it means to be an American?

They remain quiet, the email never comes, or they never reply back on facebook or some other social media. So, I am left with needing to remind everyone what it means to be an American. 

A true American begins with asking one simple question, how does that work? Everything we see, whether it's an electric motor or an ice cream maker, a true American asks, "how does that work." They do not ask "what" things are, they ask "how" things work. The difference is huge.

We can build a house with the second question but you can't with the first question. When we ask what things are we leave the answer open for an authority to tell us. The second is all up to us to find out. When we ask how things work our freedom is still ours. When we ask what things...

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The Truth About Budgeting

Uncategorized Apr 03, 2020

The client/builder relationship often starts as an adversarial relationship. The client presses for a per-square foot price and the builder too often gives a low estimate to get the job. We call this bait and switch.

Builders bait the client with a lower price and the client signs the contract without reading the details.

If you want to know why so many hate their builder at the end of the project, it all starts at the beginning in choosing between a cost plus contract verses a fixed price contract. Here are the facts and differences.

Cost Plus

·     Cost plus builders show every invoice and every receipt.

·     The client, not the builder, is in control.

·     Cost plus builders charge from 10-15% on all costs to build the project.

·     Cost plus builders tend to push for padding and contingency in the budget, which means a higher budget at the start.


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Do Not Schedule, Line Out


Scheduling can only happen if you know the steps and the processes involved in tasks and trades. The more you know about what it takes to line out a particular job, the better you can schedule the project. Owner Builders make the mistake of scheduling with their own assumptions about timing to do tasks, skills, and trades. Do not do this. Get to know your sub-contractors. Talk with them, and observe how much they are getting done each day. This will help you line out the rest of the week and month. 

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What is an Owner Builder?

Uncategorized Mar 13, 2020

The following questions should help you understand what an owner builder is.

Does an owner builder need to be licensed?

An owner-builder is is typically exempt from licensure, but there are limitations.

A license is typically not required if:

·     The owner-builder does the work himself or herself or through his or her own employees with wages as their sole compensation and the structure(s) is/are not intended for sale. In some states this be up to two years, other states it is one year.

·     The owner-builder contracts with properly licensed subcontractor(s). This exemption typically applies to the construction of a single-family residential structure and limits the number of structures intended or offered for sale to four or fewer in a calendar year. In other words, an owner builder is limited on how may structures they can build in a calendar year.

·     The owner-builder contracts with a General...

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When Not to Hire a General Contractor

Uncategorized Feb 03, 2020

A general contractor can charge 10% to 23% of the total cost to build in order to manage a new residential construction project. If $300.000 is needed in actual costs to build, this could mean an additional $30,000 to hire a general contractor.

Can you really afford this?

General contractors service one purpose, to save you time. While there are some who work extra hard to save their clients unnecessary costs, their main purpose is to save their clients time they do not have to oversea a construction project.

Therefore, if you do not have the time to manage your own projects, and if you have the money, then by all means hire a general contractor. Kelsch Construction can build a project anywhere in the rocky mountains of Utah.

But for the many of you needing to save precious funds for the actual building of your homes, and if you have the time to be your own contractor, then use our owner builder training to manage a construction project from concept to completion. This is when you...

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