Building a Roundhouse in New Zealand

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Our roundhouse design is complete! Designed as an alternative solution to New Zealand code, although designed to code (the joy of bureaucracy) which took around 8 months, longer than anticipated. The adage to always allow extra time & money when building is certainly true, in our case delays were not because of a complicated design, in fact this design is rather simple, rather finding the right consultants proved to be the challenge as we were up against folk used to calculating square boxes.

However with persistence and good advice we found a talented local draughtsman and engineer whom had figured out the basic calculations within 5 minutes of speaking with him. A joint sigh of relief from both of us as our initial engineering consultation quote almost put an end to our project.

In the end taking time to find the right people proved to be about $12000.00 saving. We were most impressed that the engineer was no nonsense and his engineering was hand drawn and equations hand written. Quite something in this age of technology. From this experience we have learned that there will always be folk that are willing and motivated to step outside the box, it may require a little more time and research to find them, but it is well worth it.

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Thus far a grand sum of $20,000 spent before we even break ground. This includes the draughtsman, three engineer reports – structural, wastewater & geotech. Also $4000 for the council consent process

Currently these upfront costs are required to design a home that is considered an alternative to current code. It offers low impact & sustainable solutions, such as alternatives to building with materials that off gas, however these costs can certainly stifle creativity. And can be a real challange for those that don’t have deep pockets whom want to build in a similiar way. However when factored into the entire cost of the project we anticipate that the initial upfront costs to design a solutions focused home, will balance out with an estimated savings of 30% in the build costs but also in the essential ongoing costs associated with day to day living & wastewater management. With the added bonus of living in home that is healthy and of our creation.

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