Wednesday, October 3, 2012

Free Consultation,4/10/12



Dear Thomas,
I have seen some of your valuable comments about construction in your blog. I am the editor of It is my pleasure to put your articles on my website if you are willing to provide. It can be on weekly basis.

My reply

Naturally I cannot share my articles free of charges to any one and I do not want to give copy rights for my writings to any one.I have put your communication here so that my readers can be aware of your e magazine.

Slope Concrete roof or slope fabricated roof above flat concrete roof


I am planning to build a single floor house with slope tiled roof.I am  thinking of two option one is to make slope RCC roof and to lay clay tiles on the slope roof. Second option is to make single floor flat roof house and to make fabricated slope roof structure and to lay tiles on that. can you please explain advantage and disadvantage of the both including economy and reliability.


Senior Engineer

Indian Oil Corporation LTD.(Orissa)

My reply

If you can get concrete masons capable of doing slope concrete roof well,that option will be better

But usually it will be difficult to get such expert concrete workers.Then only option will be to go for second option of doing flat concrete roof and fabricated steel slope roof on top of it,even though it will be more costly

Checking Plan of house prepared


Dear Sir,

I happened to view your blogs, thank you for the very good information . Please find the attached pdf file of my house plan. I am requesting for your suggestions

My reply

After going through plan forwarded by you for Evaluation following are my comments:

Vasthu aspects:

1. For a North facing house, Car porch should come at east or at middle of the front portion. Your car porch comes at west

2. Common toilet is coming at South West corner of house. Harmful

Architectural aspects:

1. Living room size insufficient. Sitting area after leaving passage will be only 265 x 350

2. Toilet length,300 too much for a width of 164.It will also increase your cost without giving proportionate benefits in space utilization

3. Toilets doors opening directly to bed room space in the case of both bed rooms will reduce effective space utilization for bed rooms

4. Inclined stair case will increase cost of construction and also it may cause slippage while climbing down stairs especially for elderly

5. Sit out size too big for that living room

6. No front steps from north side. It will cause inconvenience for anyone entering house

7. Stair area not properly ventilated causing darker space in stair area. Stair should not have been placed close to outer wall

8. From Kitchen, there should have been a door direct to Dining space. There is only an arch opening to stair area from Kitchen

9. Shelves inside walls are not present day trend. It will also increase cost

10. Kitchen sink, Fridge and Gas stove should form three corners of a rectangle for easier movement inside Kitchen.

11. Common toilet length 250 too much for a width of 150.180 is sufficient

Structural Engineering:

1. Dining, Stair area to be redesigned to reduce reinforcement cost of roof slab

Comments based on general feed back

Few notable facts which I happened to notice during interactions with different customers are given below:

Square feet cost of construction

People generally think that there is a “square feet cost of construction”  for house construction irrespective of design,soil conditions,site conditions,location,material used.

It is a factual error.Any one will know actual square feet cost of construction only after completion of house construction.Cost of construction of every house will be different as input cost varies rapidly with time,location,design and many other factors contributing to cost

Contractors who take up work do not follow same engineering standards or quality standards.In fact most of the contractors do not bother to get services of  qualified and experienced professionals for design,detailed drawings,instructions at site and guidance for work.In fact taking such services will reduce their profit margin not only by fees to be paid to professional but also for using proper materials as per engineering standards

I will not blame any of these house construction contractors for not availing and following professional assistance and guidance.They are basically in the business of house construction to make profit.Profit is essential for them to continue with the service they provide(survival) and for growth of their business.

They are forced to give a false square feet cost by simply assuming unknown input costs of construction as their customers insist on getting a “square feet cost”.If their assumptions go right and if they are able to get comfortable profit within that rate given,both owner of house and contractor will be happy.If the contractor is forced to reduce “rate” to get business he will try to manage to get profit by compromising on quality of construction while hiding it with sweet talks to owner of house.

Preferably owner of house should get experienced professional assistance in design of the house,drawings and instructions for each stage of construction till completion of the fact an experienced professional can guide you to save cost of construction without compromising on quality of construction.But contractor may demand a different “rate” if you inform him on involvement of a professional.

Can any one who knows Auto CAD drawing prepare plan of your house?

Plan of your house to be built has to be designed by the best professional you can get with maximum exposure to house design and construction.Just by undergoing a professional course in a college no one become a good professional as our education system do not produce professionals with expertise.

A trained professional get exposed to design and construction of house with site exposure and acquire knowledge with each new work.If such an experienced person design your house,you can get better value for your money and better facilities for your house.He can also ensure that every bit of space available to you in the plot is utilised in the most appropriate manner.

Experienced professional also can design plan of your house in such a manner to get good Elevation.Lots of people think that all that an Architect can do is to give a good looking Elevation for any plan prepared by any one.Elevation of the house depends upon plan of the house.Plan will have to be designed in a manner to get a good Elevation and any plan prepared by any one can not have a good Elevation.

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