A lot of resources are being lost in the real estate sector because of a lack of knowledge.  There are just too many people who think all they need to do when they want to build a house is to purchase a piece of land, mold blocks, and hire labourers! You will hear them ask questions like “how many blocks will I need to build a 3-bedroom bungalow? Is it cheaper/better to mold blocks or buy? How much will it cost to dig a well so the labourers can have water for their work?” These are good questions if you are building in a rural area but for urban areas, they are not the questions you should be asking at the beginning.

You should be asking questions such as:

  • Is it safe to purchase this land?
  • Will I have any issues with the government if I purchase this land?
  • Will I be able to get a good title?
  • Is this land outside the minimum setback of the closest public utilities?
  • Will I be granted a building permit for a 3-storey building here?
  • Will the cost of the foundation be too high because of the terrain/topography that it may be better to look for land elsewhere?
  • In this location, can I start building immediately after purchase?

These are questions that professionals can answer for you. And it is after you are satisfied with the answers that you should start worrying about blocks! This year alone I have seen someone who was denied a building permit (setback issue–power line), another one was given a demolition notice (setback issue-canal) and the last one was asked to stop construction work with immediate effect (8 mini-flats with no parking space).

Asking the right questions before embarking on a building project will save you precious time and money.