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Okay, so I decided to waste some time at work and sketch up a proposal for our future house in Silay. It will be around 160 sq meters, plus a carport and an outdoor covered area. I wanted a fairly simple design which is easy to build. Three beds upstairs, plus a spare one downstairs. I've done away with the ensuite bathroom to the master bedroom, and gone with a single one upstairs (plus a small one downstairs). Noticed how I've placed all the plumbing one side of the building? I've added a roof extension for the outdoor area and carport so that the place doesn't look too much like a brick;) Later we'll add some landscaping to soften the look further.

 

One thing I was going to change, was to split the living area (sala) in half; one half becoming the entertainment room. One other thing I'll change, will be to bring all the windows up near to the ceiling level, so that I don't need additional lintels above them.

 

Anyway, we are in the process of finding a basic architect to flesh out the idea.

 

Andrew

 

SilayHouseElevation.jpgSilayHouseEndViewA.jpgSilayHouseEndViewB.jpgSilayHouseFirstFloorplan.jpgSilayHouseSecondFloorplan.jpg

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Previously I talked about our (wife and two kids) plans of moving back to the Philippines. We lived there seven years ago (for 3 years). This time around have been planning on buying some land in Sila

make sure its where you want to live forever as selling a house here is almost impossible

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What did you use to draw those sketches?

 

I used AutoCad. I'm making sure the architect is also on AutoCad, and that way I can easily update/correct his drawings.

 

Andrew

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Hi Andrew, you don't see much in the way of lintels here, so I wouldn't worry about any extra costs, because the weight of the structure is on the post and beams the only weight load above the window is generally two courses of block, so lintels are cast in situ using some re bar, some rough form work and concrete,I've never seen a pre-stressed concrete,catnic or RSJ used as a lintel for doors or windows, generally the building work is basic, I would put some thought into your electrical lay out, weather you want to run a separate 110v system, or do want to consider a back up generator that has its own skeleton wiring system. water, water pressure and water capture should be considered, if you have good constant water pressure to your place, thats good but if your pressure fails during peak periods or like us during brown outs, consider a water tank and a gravity feed to your house, if you have the yard space some squat tanks can be fed direct from your guttering and plumbed direct to lower floor CRs sinks etc can also be pumped to main tank if required.

 

if you wont be attached to a town waste system, allow space for you septic tank and soak away in the yard, give the location some thought as any future plans to extend or add new structures can be effected by a badly located septic tank,

 

John

 

John

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Hi Andrew, you don't see much in the way of lintels here, so I wouldn't worry about any extra costs, because the weight of the structure is on the post and beams the only weight load above the window is generally two courses of block, so lintels are cast in situ using some re bar, some rough form work and concrete,I've never seen a pre-stressed concrete,catnic or RSJ used as a lintel for doors or windows, generally the building work is basic, I would put some thought into your electrical lay out, weather you want to run a separate 110v system, or do want to consider a back up generator that has its own skeleton wiring system. water, water pressure and water capture should be considered, if you have good constant water pressure to your place, thats good but if your pressure fails during peak periods or like us during brown outs, consider a water tank and a gravity feed to your house, if you have the yard space some squat tanks can be fed direct from your guttering and plumbed direct to lower floor CRs sinks etc can also be pumped to main tank if required.

 

if you wont be attached to a town waste system, allow space for you septic tank and soak away in the yard, give the location some thought as any future plans to extend or add new structures can be effected by a badly located septic tank,

 

John

 

John

 

Thanks for the excellent advice, John! I remember when we were having our previous house built, the builder added lintels above each of the windows, which I agree was a bit unnecessary (not sure why I didn't question it at the time). We'll only be running 220vac, but I'll have a backup generator. So I guess we'll need a double throw switch? The water pressure isn't too bad. But as we have a second story and I like plenty of pressure, I'll probably go with a standard tank on the ground and a small pressure tank fed via a pump.

 

Andrew

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Thanks for the excellent advice, John! I remember when we were having our previous house built, the builder added lintels above each of the windows, which I agree was a bit unnecessary (not sure why I didn't question it at the time). We'll only be running 220vac, but I'll have a backup generator. So I guess we'll need a double throw switch? The water pressure isn't too bad. But as we have a second story and I like plenty of pressure, I'll probably go with a standard tank on the ground and a small pressure tank fed via a pump.

 

Andrew

Hi Andrew,

Assuming that your budget allows, your roofed external area and car port could be constructed post and beam style and strong enough to take another floor, ideally finished with a concrete floor but not necessarily, then add your hip / flat roof as per plans, if in the future you want to expand or remodel you can expand out onto those levels

 

Ok back to work

 

John

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  • 1 month later...

Okay, so I decided to waste some time at work and sketch up a proposal for our future house in Silay. It will be around 160 sq meters, plus a carport and an outdoor covered area. I wanted a fairly simple design which is easy to build. Three beds upstairs, plus a spare one downstairs. I've done away with the ensuite bathroom to the master bedroom, and gone with a single one upstairs (plus a small one downstairs). Noticed how I've placed all the plumbing one side of the building? I've added a roof extension for the outdoor area and carport so that the place doesn't look too much like a brick;) Later we'll add some landscaping to soften the look further.

 

One thing I was going to change, was to split the living area (sala) in half; one half becoming the entertainment room. One other thing I'll change, will be to bring all the windows up near to the ceiling level, so that I don't need additional lintels above them.

 

Anyway, we are in the process of finding a basic architect to flesh out the idea.

 

Andrew

 

SilayHouseElevation.jpgSilayHouseEndViewA.jpgSilayHouseEndViewB.jpgSilayHouseFirstFloorplan.jpgSilayHouseSecondFloorplan.jpg

 

Hello Andrew...I think the living room and the master bedroom should face north...and or add some shade device...as in covered terrace...2 story?

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  • 2 weeks later...
SkyMan

Hey Andrew, at first I was going to tell you your design was horrible because I once lived in a house with only 1 bathroom along with my wife and 2 year old and I won't do anything crazy like that again. But then I looked closer and is that a CR next to the laundry? Hope it has at least a toilet and sink.

 

Is the laundry room large enough? It looks like a machine could go in there and maybe a wash tub but it doesn't look like there's room for drying or folding, especially with 2 doors. I would consider removing the outside door from the laundry room because it will be difficult to get through that room to the outside anyway except for the person doing the laundry because they need to get to the outside to hang the laundry. I would put that door next to the laundry in the place you have left for the ref. Putting the ref nearer the stove (and I'm assuming that's a breakfast bar?) would save a lot of steps. I think that's the sink drawn next to where you had the ref? I would put the sink next to the stove facing the living room so the person washing up can converse with the rest of the people in the house while washing and with sink, stove, ref, and some counter space in the same area it is very efficient. If the bar is raised above counter level the sink and possible dirty dishes are hidden from view of anyone walking into the house.

 

I would consider removing that wall between the Dining and Living rooms. Me, personally, I like an open area and without the wall you can do more with arrangements and you aren't so limited on furniture size. But I know some people like to have a specific area for this and for that. I generally consider a formal Dining room to be a waste of space. Also, without the wall the person in the kitchen is more able to be a part of the family while they are watching TV or whatever. Something may be required there for load baring but I would make it a post if required.

 

Not sure how tall you are or how steep your steps are but I think I'd hit my head going up.

 

I would put the door to the upstairs toilet in the room with the sink and (2?) showers. I'd rather not use the toilet and then have to go through 2 doors to wash my hands. Also, you could do away with the toilet room altogether, put the toilet in place of the 2nd shower and move the bathroom over to expand the 3rd bedroom. The 2nd bedroom could also be expanded a similar amount out of the front of the house to give the facade more interest.

 

The terrace on the Master is a nice feature but most of the people I know that have them never use them. The one exception is someone who had his covered but it really looks a bit odd to me. You'll probably find that you spend more of your outside time on the front porch or in the carport (close to the food and drinks too). If you really want a terrace with a higher view, I'd make the roof of the carport into one and it wouldn't look too bad with a cover there. I would at least cut the MB terrace size by half, leaving room for a couple chairs and a small table for morning coffee but I'd add the extra space to the Master bedroom and some of that would go to closet space.

 

Of course I don't know the dimensions you have in mind so maybe the bedrooms are already big.

 

This is what I would do and our styles and priorities are different so just take these as alternate possibilities to consider.

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Andrew,

 

My suggestion to you would be to browse some of those house plan books in the nearest home improvement store or Barnes and Noble magazine section back in the states and find a house plan that is close to what you are looking for in size and arrangement. Then order the plans (it's cheap and they have already thought of all the details you are likely to forget. I have designed and built houses and it isn't as easy as it looks.

 

The things you don't think about in the beginning will cost you a lot later on. For instance, where you have your stairs coming up from the first floor will either cause a very short ceiling or a sloped floor in your master bedroom. I can't imagine a master bedroom without a master bath. Is there a maid's room in the house? And what is with that two-room bathroom on the second floor with a sink and toilet in one part and a sink, shower and bathtub in the other?

 

Since you are just in the idea stage right now, it might be very beneficial to browse the plan books and order some stock plans. Then you can give them to an architect on Negros and get them exactly the way you want them without much fuss. I think you will be a lot happier that way than if you just try to dream up some plans and then figure out what you are doing as you go.

 

Since the subject of house voltage was brought up, I'm wondering what the advantages are of using either a 120/240 volt system (with a transformer) or just going with the standard 220 volt system they use here. Any advice from those who have built using the two alternatives would be appreciated. I'm pretty much in the same position as Andrew, except I am going to be building in Danao and I already have my plans. I have my land (546 square meters of flate land) purchased in my fiance's name and leased to me (prepaid and receipted), which I did through a good attorney. My next step is to get with some good design/build firms and have them bid the house, but I still haven't decided for sure on the house voltage. I'm not sure where you would buy appliances that use anything other than 220 volts here, so that may be a show stopper on 120/240.

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With that mmuch land...I would build single story...somme day I will be too old to want to walk up the stairs?

also I like to sit out side mmost of the time in the shade...a pool is a must!

 

 

ps...my mm sticks...need computer medic

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SkyMan

Andrew,

 

My suggestion to you would be to browse some of those house plan books in the nearest home improvement store or Barnes and Noble magazine section back in the states and find a house plan that is close to what you are looking for in size and arrangement. Then order the plans (it's cheap and they have already thought of all the details you are likely to forget. I have designed and built houses and it isn't as easy as it looks.

 

The things you don't think about in the beginning will cost you a lot later on. For instance, where you have your stairs coming up from the first floor will either cause a very short ceiling or a sloped floor in your master bedroom. I can't imagine a master bedroom without a master bath. Is there a maid's room in the house? And what is with that two-room bathroom on the second floor with a sink and toilet in one part and a sink, shower and bathtub in the other?

 

Since you are just in the idea stage right now, it might be very beneficial to browse the plan books and order some stock plans. Then you can give them to an architect on Negros and get them exactly the way you want them without much fuss. I think you will be a lot happier that way than if you just try to dream up some plans and then figure out what you are doing as you go.

 

Since the subject of house voltage was brought up, I'm wondering what the advantages are of using either a 120/240 volt system (with a transformer) or just going with the standard 220 volt system they use here. Any advice from those who have built using the two alternatives would be appreciated. I'm pretty much in the same position as Andrew, except I am going to be building in Danao and I already have my plans. I have my land (546 square meters of flate land) purchased in my fiance's name and leased to me (prepaid and receipted), which I did through a good attorney. My next step is to get with some good design/build firms and have them bid the house, but I still haven't decided for sure on the house voltage. I'm not sure where you would buy appliances that use anything other than 220 volts here, so that may be a show stopper on 120/240.

Not sure if there would be too much value in buying plans in the US as they aren't going to be set up for concrete construction. Good idea to pour over design books though, to get lots of ideas.

 

As for power I have been pondering this myself. 110v would allow you to bring US quality appliances over rather than buying the local Chinese junk but then you'd have to bring over everything you needed and if something broke you'd have to have a replacement shipped. And 110 would require a transformer that would use some power whether you were running anything or not. 220 limits you to the local junk or have them brought in from Germany or something. If resale is an issue you might also consider that doing anything nonstandard will probably lower the value. If you do 110v, expect to sell all the appliances with the house or convert the house to 220 before sale.

 

Another option is to run 110 and 220 to all or most outlets so you have the freedom to go either way but you'll have to develop your own method of making sure no one in your house ever goes the wrong way. Perhaps you couid use 4 socket outlets with 2 110 and 2 220 and have a plate screwed into it to cover the 2 sockets you don't want used. Make sure you inform anyone visiting your house in on 110 too. And you still have the problem of using power even when nothing is on.

 

Some suggestions I have come up with on electrical though: Follow US code on the number of outlets. Last time I built something there, there had to be an outlet within 3 ft of each side of a door and every 12 feet of wall space. (I would go 6 ft in the kitchen area. Could be a bit of overkill but I've never heard of any saying they had too many outlets. Some people have commented that my house looks like a foreigner built it. The I show them the living room has only 2 outlets and on one end and the entire kitchen couter only has 1 awkwardly positioned outlet over the sink. Also, I would make sure all outlets are accessible via plastic conduit from the attic. Saves ripping out walls.

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SkyMan

With that mmuch land...I would build single story...somme day I will be too old to want to walk up the stairs?

also I like to sit out side mmost of the time in the shade...a pool is a must!

 

 

ps...my mm sticks...need computer medic

Your mmmm sticks a lot. Most likely something sticky spilled underneath? If it's a desktop keyboard you should be able to pop the key straight out and clean it and under it. If it's a laptop you may be able to work a cue tip with alcohol under it or something.

 

Yes, I prefer no stairs myself. If you have room that's best?

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can't imagine a new home built without a master bath. If you ever do need to sell a master bath is critical.

 

Good luck with your plans and congrats on you land ! Looks like u are getting some great ideas from you posting.

 

Cheers,

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Not sure if there would be too much value in buying plans in the US as they aren't going to be set up for concrete construction. Good idea to pour over design books though, to get lots of ideas.

 

It is in the general layout (it can be reconfigured to reinforced concrete or concrete block by the architect) and in the electrical, plumbing and air conditioning plans that the canned plans are valuable. Most Philippine architects don't seem to pay much attention to the utilities, and a Westerner will be baffled by the lack of outlets in rooms, three-way switches for lights, and lack of grounds or GCFI in the electrical system, p-traps and vent pipes in the sewer lines, pressure control in plumbing (it's mostly gravity-feed here with very little pressure) and lack of central air accommodations (if that is something you want). If you stick to canned house plans with stucco or stucco/masonry exteriors, then the conversion to concrete is pretty straight forward. I wouldn't build anything here using frame construction due to the subterrainian termite issue (they are everywhere).

 

The appliance issue is something I have been looking at too. There are actually quite a few places in Cebu City selling quality 220 volt appliances, but I haven't seen any 120 volt at all. I would hate having the wait for a major appliance to be shipped from overseas and then have to pay for it twice once it hits customs here (the import tariff is pretty steep on stuff like that). Right now, I am leaning toward 220 volt, since the appliances don't become so much an issue. I think I can use a travel transformer to use 120 volt stuff in a 220 volt outlet for the few things I can't find in 220 volt.

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