A resourceful Irish couple spent over a year building their dream home before moving in – and they have revealed how they completed the process from design to final result.
Hazel O’Connor is a nurse from Co Laois. She and her partner, Paddy, who works as an electrician are both in their mid-20s.
Neither were interested in renting a home, so they started saving in 2017. They were gifted a piece of land and started work building a house in July 2018.
They continued living with their parents until the home was ready to move into in September 2019.
The couple were fortunate to have a good friend, James, who is an architect who helped them throughout the project with both creating the design and with helping the process of being granted planning permission to go smoothly.
Hazel said that Paddy and her father were also heavily involved and said they were ‘joint project managers’.
Hazel told the Irish Mirror: “I suppose getting a house built is a stressful process – there is a lot of money involved and you want everything to be 100%.
“We went direct labour which is very time consuming, involves a lot of phone calls, organising different trades, materials for each tradesman and knowing what comes next and having it prepared.
“To be fair both Paddy and my Dad were like joint project managers.
“They both worked so hard and ensured everything went smoothly. We also had a lot of friends in each trade so direct labour worked for us but may not be everyone’s cup of tea. We had to rearrange one aspect of the build due to tradesmen cancelling.
Hazel also issued a word of warning about how costs can spiral out of control if you haven’t taken everything into account.
She said: “The hidden costs are the big shock, like what you actually spend before you start to build such as site insurance, water supply, security, council fees – to name a few.”
Hazel went on to describe the process in more detail, from the designing stage to building to the final result.
She added: “We spent time looking at other houses, designs and what would be suitable for our area. Once we knew how we wanted the outside to look like and what we needed and wanted inside our architect helped us to put both together.
“He designed a home that suited what we wanted but ensured it was practical from a construction, functional and planning point of view.
“Very often you can look at the front of a house as well as the internal plans of a house but to get both to come together in a way that works for you can be challenging.
“I think our drawings changed about six times but who cares once you are happy with the final result.”
The couple’s next project will be to create the master bedroom. You can follow Hazel and Paddy’s project updates on their Instagram page.
Take a look at the pictures below.
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