Labor is one of the large components of home construction costs. In addition, it is hard to find contractors. One of the lowest cost ways to build a home is to build it yourself. For those people with limited construction experience, a kit may be a good option. There are a few companies in the area that offer home kits for do-it-yourselfers, such as Firstday Cottage and Jamaica Cottage Shop. Many of these companies help you through the design process, order and ship the materials to the site, and provide some level of guidance through the building process. Some home kits come with pre-cut lumber, others do not. Some companies will frame it up for you, others will not. It is generally recommended that contractors are hired for certain specialized tasks, such as site work, foundation, and plumbing and electrical work.
There are also variants to this approach. Some companies can provide a shell, allowing you to complete the rest of the work yourself. For example, Huntington Homes has a “modules only” package. Tumbleweed Houses offers a shell, which requires the buyer to complete the rest of a tiny house on wheels themselves. See Figure 6 for an example of a tiny house shell.
Yestermorrow Design/Build School in Vermont offers training to do-it-yourselfers as well as professionals. While they are not a home kit provider, they can teach the skills needed to build a home, whether as a kit or from scratch.