This is a book about the human spirit as much as hindsight. Marvellous ways to buy, rent, hire, or create your way to a beautiful home are everywhere. Home owning ideas are everywhere; in the media, in magazines, to the places you visit, to the people who are in your world. Having the determination to do something is in everyone. Everyone wants to build own home with thoughts of winter wood fires, lounging in luxury, summer BBQs etc.. The joys of house building can inspire but enthusiasm without experience is a recipe for chaos. I got anything and everything done - eventually - but bulldozering your way through life with a determination reserved only for the SAS is not always a recipe for success.
Unless of course you're in the SAS. My never give in attitude got me in deep trouble with everyone from suppliers, neighbours, police, council and many more on many occasions but also saved me in my other building escapades when dicing with banks, accidents, explosions and fires.
This is my story. I’m an average Joe not backed by the typical Grand Design TV show contestant with the casual £500k to throw around. Or the smug entrepreneur with mere millions lying around for a pet building project. I had a modest and almost recklessly tiny budget backed by a teacher’s salary. The teacher’s salary alone meant raising my family in the bedroom of my parents’ home was a very real possibility unless I did something home wise sooner rather than later. My solution was to build my very own house and short cut my way to the ideal home for decades to come. This is a story of an ordinary man in the street, relentlessly marching towards his own financial armageddon and with a lot to learn. This is the story how my life got turned upside down.
Where do we start our story together...?
Its 4 years since I embarked on the biggest threat of my life to my financial security and mental health. The scars are only just healing and my penfriend at the bank has only just stopped writing letters. This is the true tale of the house built by Dave - that's me. And how building my own home bulldozed my finances and played Twister with my sanity. The story will follow the project from planning permission to first occupation of my home and how the project to build my home fell regularly, and with a certain inevitability, into every pitfall available. From regular police visits, council investigations, panic at the bank, meddling neighbours, suppliers who think a deadline is a start line, burning furniture and to the accidental ability to create significant gas explosions, the self-build new experiences were eye opening.
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