Cost For New Home Build In Central Texas.

4 Replies

Hello all, I am a young (21 y/o) investor from the Austin area looking to broaden my horizons. I have been buying and selling vacant lots for the past three years, and am finally (after the close of my last 2 properties next month) in a position to build a small investment house. I am looking to build a small 1338 Sq Ft three bed, two bath two story house in the lake way/hudson bend area. I am looking to keep this one pretty simple with stained concrete or tile (whichever is cheaper) with carpet in bedrooms and typical average finish out besides some granite counters. The Slab will only be 30x30 plus a carport, and water is available but will require a septic system.

I know there are many factors such as topography, but I am looking to get an idea of what it may cost to build something like this on a flat lot from some of you experienced investors, and maybe even get some recommendations if any of you use a contractor. I am semi familiar with the process of building, but plan on using a contractor for my first few projects until I am comfortable doing the contracting.

Here are some photos of the plan I have in mind! All advice from experienced builders/investors will be greatly appreciated. puts out a new building cost chart that is the average cost nationwide from survey respondents.  It will be dated information and based on an average house so about 2200 sq ft (price per sq ft is higher for smaller homes) but you can get an idea of the costs of components.  I am sorry your first response is from someone who doesn't know anything :-), but if no one else chimes in you can probably get a decent Idea from one of track build on your lot websites..Tillotson homes?  Or price the cottages at northwood in avery ranch and subtract the lot--you should walk their or some other "cottage" model homes and see if you can find a floorplan you like so you can see your space you're building.  I know someone who hired someone to custom build a Newmark floorplan...she knew exactly what she was  regrets.

You can build for anywhere from about $100/sqft an up.  It also depends on what you include in that amount.  The pre-start costs that are often *sometimes* included in a build and used to sway that number to the negotiators advantage are the following:

  • Plan Sets - $1.25 - $4/sqft
  • Engineering - Framing, Foundation, Water Tap plans
  • Soil testing - $1,500
  • Inspection Fees - $500
  • Energy Audits - $500
  • Water Meter Fee - Depends, $500 - $15,000
  • Tap hook up - Depends, City may do it, or up to $5,000
  • Gas Line hook up - $1,000
  • Utility costs - $600
  • Legal work - surveys -$1,500
  • Builder's Risk insurance - DONT FORGET THIS! - $400
  • Porta Cans - $70/mo
  • Interest Carry Costs - Depends on your note and size
  • Lot Grading, Drainage mitigation - Completely variable

The above list can often be as much as 15% of the entire project cost especially if you need utilities or have sloped lot issues.  So make sure you understand all of those well.

You can get very basic builder grade finishes done for about $90/ft after all of that and the builder fee is usually going to be Cost + some percentage (15%+ in Travis County)

I know of some good fee builders you may want to consider for your first one.  Hit me up privately.

Thanks for the responses guys! I was expecting somewhere in the 100 Per ft range, but have seen some investors on here stating they were building for 70-80 in the Austin area. Im sure at those prices they were contracting themselves, but was curious if it would be able to have a home built with mid quality for 90-100 Per foot inclusive of everything besides the lot.

John, I will definitely keep it in mind and may very well PM you once I am in the process of looking for builders. My last two properties are set to close on the 24th of next month and at that time I will start seriously looking for builders as I would like to break ground by July- September.

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