By Karen Moores
Deanne Dawe (pictured), the owner of Tidy Solutions, offers custom house plans and interior design from her offices in Bay Roberts and St. John’s, N.L. As a lover of design (she studied at Humber College and College of the North Atlantic), she had her heart set on building her dream home; as a new business owner managing the needs of a growing business, she knew she couldn’t go over budget. Her goal: building a dream home on less than $250,000, including the cost of land. Though it isn’t finished yet, her dream home is well on its way to reality. Here’s how she’s doing it.
Dawe’s design expertise enables her to select less expensive options without changing the size or layout of her dream home. As illustrated, she chose a gable style roof instead of a hip style roof, which would typically cost 30-to-50 per cent more. Though the house outline is a basic square (a simple and inexpensive shape to build), Dawe is infusing it with warmth, style and street appeal by incorporating two peaks and overhang on each end of the house. Dawe notes that, “Keeping the foundation of the house square and in increments of two inches is easier for the formers and foundation crew, saving time and labour costs.”
Keeping to the $250,000 budget was partially possible due to the cost of land: Dawe researched land costs and taxation levels before electing to build in Bay Roberts, just 40 minutes from the capital city of St. John’s. On the main floor, she’s cutting costs by incorporating a corner pantry (as pictured in the main floor plans), which will reduce the amount of cabinetry required. This cut $8,000 from her cabinet pricing. Another money-saving tip: she’s subcontracting various aspects of the build and avoiding expensive turnkey fees. Dawe and her family are also doing their own dry walling, plastering and painting—freeing up $10,000 for other aspects of the build.