New construction Greater LA area

6 Replies

Hello BP! Does anyone know any builders in the greater LA area or have any experience in new construction in the LA area? I have plans waiting for plan check but am getting wildly varying estimates. Any insights would be greatly appreciated!

Hey @Scott Choppin , thanks for the reply. The project would be in Los Angeles proper in 90047. It would be construction on an ADU on a ~6k square foot lot. I have plans and engineering ready to go, but have held off on official plan check as I can't seem to get a consistent build cost. I'm seeing anything from $150k to $280k and am trying to understand if something closer to ~$100 per square foot would be feasible.

Side note, I actually live in long beach.  Do  you attend any local events in LBC or the South Bay? 

@Michael Ray Aglibot

Good morning. Our build cost is on the low end of the 100 range, but we build ourselves direct to the sub markets, so no markup on the const. costs, nor GC profit in those costs. Last I bid a project (2017) to a GC, one guy was at $140, but we did not have full CD's complete, so that was an educated guess. 

Does your deal work work at $150? Sounds like you are committed to the project (complete plans) so get a bid from the guy at 150 but have him get sub bids and show them to you. Tell him as long as he comes in at 150 then you don't care what his profit/overhead is, but you do want to see real sub bids that support the 150. Your plans are complete, so that's good to get real bids (assuming they are quality plans and design)

Unless you build for your own account, 100 bucks is not feasible.

@Scott Choppin I appreciate the feedback.  My partner and I are now looking at managing the project ourselves as we do have the trade contacts, but our worry is the workload with our full time jobs.  Have you heard/do you advise this route from your experience?

@Michael Ray Aglibot

We build our projects this way, we call it Owner CM with prime subcontractors. This can work if:

1. You have good subs that can complete the work without lots of babysitting. 

2. You have subs that have someone with both construction experience and that can speak decent English. This is not meant to be biased, but you will find it surprisingly hard to discuss fine project details and give important direction over cell phone with someone whose English is not good. If you or your partners speak Spanish, that's valuable. 

2. All subs are correctly licensed and insured.

3. You know the build process and your plans so well that you can explain the plans over the phone without visuals to subs who need guidance from the field. It's much harder to answer questions and give direction remotely over the phone than standing onsite explaining in person. No sub will be effective via email in the field, it's just too hard to be out on site and answer emails from you iPhone. Text can work OK if the subs are checking their phone often, most don't often enough. Generally, you are left with calling them and talking with them via cell phone to coordinate.

4. You and your partner are available to answer questions from subs and inspectors during working hours.

5. You and your partner can keep up with the paperwork part: permits, contracts, inspection requests, inspection changes, invoices, lien releases, insurance certificates, draw requests, accounting, monthly general conditions invoices and payments, etc.

6. You have a great bookkeeper

 ~ Scott