How to Build a House – Part 1

The building of a house in no way is an easy task. The work is extremely hard and the conditions are terrible. with that in mind if you are a do it your self type of person and still insist on building your own house then I am prepared to walk you through this procedure. For all intense purposes we will let the professionals install your footing and foundation. This is something that if you mess up you can not tear apart without absorbing a significant amount of money.

Let us get started with building, you are looking at your foundation. You should see anchor bolts or straps depending, first you will want to take a brick and scrape the foundation off. Yes! This is a major step, one thing you will need to remember is that preparation is 95% of the game. Now that you have your foundation clean take all of the nuts and washers and put them in a safe place until we need them. You will need to pull a diagonal measurement from corner to corner, in respect squaring up the foundation. try to divide the house into sections that are square if you have a lot of offsets.

Lets take a look at our lumber pile! You will be installing either 2×6 salt treated or 2×8 salt treated depending on the foundation and local codes for your area. The first thing that you will want to do is to look at the lumber get rid of the warped,crooked and bowed pieces. Save them we will use them through out the house while building. Replace the bad lumber either call for more or send someone to get it you will need it.

Well now we have our lumber straight and our foundation clean. Lets get to work, get the roll Styrofoam for insulation and a barrier. You will need this, roll it along the wall and stick over the anchor bolts. Next let us pull a measurement start on the straightest longest wall of the foundation. Measure over until you get to the desired length that you are working with. So if you have 12 foot material pull over 144 inches and make sure that 144 inches DOES NOT FALL OUT ON A VENT. There are alot of rules so just hang in there, you do not want a piece of lumber breaking on a vent. Now when you get to a corner you want to overlap the opposite of what the foundation is doing. For example if you are on the back wall and at thee corner looking up the side wall. If the side wall continues out to the back then you will want the sill plate that you are installing to overlap. If the back wall is continuing through to the side then you will want the side wall sill plate to overlap. Always trying to interlock all corners for a higher strength and a better structure.

Now that we have our sill plate down on the foundation get out your chalk box and tape measure. Go to every corner and measure in 1 5/8 inch. You will then take your chalk line and pop a line from i mark to the next around the entire foundation. Now lets take a look at those girders setting in the middle of the foundation. You are probably using 2×10 or 2×12 either way the method is the same. Measuring from the pier block against the foundation wall to the length of material you are using again lets say 12 foot. You will want the lumber to be cut so that the break is in the center of the pier block. Doing this all the way across, now you have the first part of three parts the girder is usually 3 boards thick equaling 4 1/2 inches. The second part to this you will want to start by getting a 12 foot piece of girder material. Laying it down on the first piece you will want to center the second piece so that half of the board is to the right and half to the left of the break on the first part. You will then repeat step 1 and 2 for your 3rd part and now you have your girder built.

This is intended to help you with the building process of your house or project. This is not intended to apply to all states as all states are different. the guidelines laid out are set forth and used in the residential construction industry. It is recommended that any person not familiar with construction hire someone that is to help them.

Suggested tips:
1) Always keep your materials dry.
2) Look at all lumber do not use lumber that is warped,twisted,bowed more than 1/4 inch and material that has a crown of more than 1/8 inch.
3) Install all crowns up on girders and floor joist.
4) Install all crowns to the exterior on walls.
5) ALWAYS WORK SAFE. If in doubt ask someone.

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