166mtrs 5 weeks 1 dead roofer??

Any story related to building in the LOS, whether everything turned out hunky dory or not!

Moderators: MGV12, BKKBILL, fredlk

166mtrs 5 weeks 1 dead roofer??

Postby geordie » Tue Jan 20, 2009 5:31 pm

hello all the header is true but you will have to wait
The project was to build a bungalow for mum in law to thai standard but obviously upgraded to habitable for holidays .
The build was a forced issue but a worthwhile project to see if the horror stories were true before building my own home in thailand
the plot is in the town of khaen khro and has a traditional thai style house on timber legs for the upstairs the down stairs was built with rendered cinder block
In reality having holidayed there for several years the house by thai standards was quite habitable other than a cople of small problems
Problem 1 was the father in law with three sons lost the battle with the termites and stopped spraying
Having said that the house is still substantially solid and could have readily been repaired
having carried out remedial work before replacing floor joists ect it was not a major job
and i estinated about two weeks for three men
The second more serious problem was the 15" water in the house several months of the year which was not so easy to cure.
this was as a result of the neigbours taking advantage of the two metre boundry wall we built and raising their land by 1.5 meters and building nice new houses(NOTE THIS POINT)
Thus a dcision was made to raise the land and buil a bungalow
How dificult could that be :?: :?:
my comments may be wrong but never deliberately
If it aint broke, dont fix it
User avatar
geordie
 
Posts: 3867
Joined: Sun Oct 12, 2008 4:39 am

Re: 166mtrs 5 weeks 1 dead roofer??

Postby geordie » Wed Jan 21, 2009 2:56 pm

The pressure started around August 2008 with a phone call to mum who explained that dad would not come down stairs due to the 18" of water in the living room and was panicing that they would drown in their sleep I suppose this was possible the house has been getting the same amount of water in it for years I did find it strange that the man was scared of a bit of water having been a rice farmer all his life Nevertheless the hints / pressure began
Part of the problem was the two meter high wall i paid for was retaining the water nicely this in fact was a result of theft The money and materials left to install drainage trenches as part of the wall project disapeared her brothers finished the wall disposed of the pipes and stone bought for the drainage so creating a seasonal paddling pool This i found a tad disheartening and was starting to feel the urine was being extracted
A couple of small projects to date had been
Refurnish the kitchen thai style units
A western style shower room with hot water and a sink
Replaced 1/3 of the floor joists due to termite damage
had tiles laid in the kitchen over uneven concret floors this included the showers
Repainted the house inside and out
Stripped the house bare and cleaned it /and contents
replaced half the furniture
all of these projects were undertaken whilst on holiday usually around and including christmass
One thing that became obvious was that other than work I had done nothing was done in the way of maintainance between visits
Another lesson learned was if the job in hand did not get finished before we left it would not be finished this in spite of leaving money and materials several time.Anything surplus in the way of materials would be transferred to the farm which i see as a sort of recycling centre because when you request its return you are greeted with sorry i do not speak martian and do not understand what you are talking about When you force the issue her brother would then disapear for 3-4 hour return drunk with the well rehearsed an familiar speech NO HAVE
It was pretty mutch the same story with money it would be a negotiated price to finish the money would be left with mum plus she would be given her allowance plus a few quid the wife woul stashed away from the farrang none of which would be spent where it should be
We bought a bufalo it died we bought pork the price dropped it cost money to keep it we paid for rice to be planted and got weeds (asking seval times why i pay for rice to be put in rice to be cut what happens to the rice afterwards nobody can give me an answer and on every ocasion i visit the wifes land its wall to wall weeds because the rice had no water)
in fact it looks lik a nature reserve amidst all the other paddy fields
Anyway now you hav the background as to why i decided to with the help of this forum go for a self build in Thailand
my comments may be wrong but never deliberately
If it aint broke, dont fix it
User avatar
geordie
 
Posts: 3867
Joined: Sun Oct 12, 2008 4:39 am

Re: 166mtrs 5 weeks 1 dead roofer??

Postby jazzman » Wed Jan 21, 2009 10:43 pm

Low scale rice farming is usually a family affair an done on a subsistence basis. There are very few costs involved. We have several rai of rice and own the village rice mill.
We usually have 10 - 15 pigs,the food is expensive, but for the first time in three years we have made a profit on the Q4 yield: 20,000 baht (which is quite a lot of money for a rural Thai family.)
How to build a $20,000 / £14,000 house and a $???? MOTEL Updated 21 March 09 - with BOQ and costs
Don't let this happen in YOUR house.
jazzman
 
Posts: 2161
Joined: Wed Dec 06, 2006 9:11 pm
Location: Thailand

Re: 166mtrs 5 weeks 1 dead roofer??

Postby geordie » Wed Jan 21, 2009 11:24 pm

i have no idea what the costs are but my wife owns a 12 rai nature reserve which for five year i would dutifully transfer £300 to put the rice in £300 to cut the rice 3 years ago i recognized where i was and went to veiw said nature reserve in amongst lots of paddy field which had obviously cut rice unfortunately her land suffers from drought when everything around floods however the old farm again twelve rai seems to produce rice anually given that the old farm of twelve rai has three less mouths to feed and the family no longer supply a restarant the rice issue has bugged me throughout my eight year of mariage and i still have no idea where the money goes given two sisters in england suposedly sending equal amounts plus a sister in thailand with a resident japenese husband the way i see it they have more disposable income than me ????iwould be interested in the costs and yeild of twelv rai though
my comments may be wrong but never deliberately
If it aint broke, dont fix it
User avatar
geordie
 
Posts: 3867
Joined: Sun Oct 12, 2008 4:39 am

Re: 166mtrs 5 weeks 1 dead roofer??

Postby Rick B » Thu Jan 22, 2009 1:22 pm

Sounds to me, Geordie, that you are dealing with a family smarter than you may give them credit for. If you gave them GBP 600 to grow and cut rice, that's about THB 30,000, which is probably more than they could have earned from harvesting the rice. I give them credit for recognizing that fact and conserving all the energy required to grow and harvest rice. Most Thai people that I know will accept any gift you give them, even if they really don't want it. They would not risk hurting your feelings by telling you that they don't want your gifts, your money or your helping hands. Perhaps, IMHO, you should ask the family what they need or want, before you give them any unrequested handouts, no matter how nice YOU think you are being.
Rick B
 
Posts: 202
Joined: Mon Apr 03, 2006 9:37 pm
Location: Sam Chuk, Suphanburi

Re: 166mtrs 5 weeks 1 dead roofer??

Postby geordie » Thu Jan 22, 2009 10:03 pm

Rick B wrote:Sounds to me, Geordie, that you are dealing with a family smarter than you may give them credit for. If you gave them GBP 600 to grow and cut rice, that's about THB 30,000, which is probably more than they could have earned from harvesting the rice.


you should ask the family what they need or want, before you give them any unrequested handouts, .

I think you have the wrong impresion here the money was requested / the rice was for my wifes farm and i thought it would give them some income and it did £600 ? anually for several years as with the buffalow and the pork the money was wasted how smart is it to eat the golden goose £600 is about what i spend on cigarettes a month so not really a big deal what is a big deal is that they thought they were putting one over on me the even bigger deal is that my wife loyal to her family assisted in this but thanks for raising the point as it was why i decide that the request for £4500 to send to mum to go towars a new house was yet another scam
The thought in my head was that this is a deposit and i will be paying for an unfinished house for the next ten years as the builder was guaranteed to run off with the money at least three times and the new builder wants more money mum has no floor no roof wall not finished all the usual bol--ks
and so i took the drastic but only logical step go to Thailand and build the house myself not the usual choice of what to do on holiday but by cutting out the middlemen (her family ) i receconed i could save several thousand pounds
my comments may be wrong but never deliberately
If it aint broke, dont fix it
User avatar
geordie
 
Posts: 3867
Joined: Sun Oct 12, 2008 4:39 am

Re: 166mtrs 5 weeks 1 dead roofer??

Postby geordie » Fri Jan 23, 2009 6:17 am

September disapeared with lots of discusions arguments on diy or a thai builder
As far as i was concerned a thai builder was a last resort past experience had already shown reliabilty was an issue
Add that to the taxation system imposed by her family things looked bleak
And then support arrived in the form of coolthaihouse
Given that in my youth i worked as a labourer to several trades i had a reasonable knowledge of construction and had worked several years as a handyman working various trades
This graduated to me restoring a french farmhouse and a few house extensions
The latest build was for my son doubling the size of his house here in uk for half the cost of a builders quote
So now i had to learn about costs and methods for building in thailand not an issue once i stumbled on the forum
The wife took a bit of convincing but her main concern SEEMED to be her dad panicking
So tickets were booked and various shetches were drawn
At this point i discovered the family had an elasticated tape measure as the property kept changing size
A final layout was decided on various prices were discussed now came the task of getting rid of the old house which as stated earlier was basically sound
Given that we had a farm nearby and her family had a farm nearby we decided to recycle the house
All pretty straightforward stuff so far ???
So now begins the fun part i mean what could go wrong
my comments may be wrong but never deliberately
If it aint broke, dont fix it
User avatar
geordie
 
Posts: 3867
Joined: Sun Oct 12, 2008 4:39 am

Re: 166mtrs 5 weeks 1 dead roofer??

Postby jazzman » Fri Jan 23, 2009 3:30 pm

geordie wrote:
Rick B wrote:Sounds to me, Geordie, that you are dealing with a family smarter than you may give them credit for. If you gave them GBP 600 to grow and cut rice, that's about THB 30,000, which is probably more than they could have earned from harvesting the rice.

Rice farming labour per rai:

    Planting rice: 8 - 9 people, one day
    Harvesting rice: approx 10 people, one day
    Tilling the ground: 1 person, one day

Family labour: FREE - always.
Extra labour: 120 baht per day (only needed if your extended family isn't big enough.

Cost of milling: we charge only 5 baht per sack. We have a capacity of about 25 - 30 bags a day. Cost of electricity: 900 baht per mnth. Cost of machine-minding: Free (family).
Sale of our rice (milled, low quality, sold from the back door): 22 - 28 baht per Kg. (shop price 30 - 38)
How to build a $20,000 / £14,000 house and a $???? MOTEL Updated 21 March 09 - with BOQ and costs
Don't let this happen in YOUR house.
jazzman
 
Posts: 2161
Joined: Wed Dec 06, 2006 9:11 pm
Location: Thailand

Re: 166mtrs 5 weeks 1 dead roofer??

Postby geordie » Sat Jan 24, 2009 2:22 pm

thanks jman pretty mutch confirms the nature reserve scam when i stopped the money for that and suggested we allow somebody to use the land for a pepercorn rent you should have heard the screams All because they hate the idea that someone might do a bit better than them personally i would rather let someone use it free than see the land wasted But it apears that like everything else its look at me i can afford to allow this land to waste because i have other income basically they resist any attempt to better their lives if it involve more effort than spending hard cash>Any attempt at setting them up with a buisness that involved them putting in some effort is doomed at the outset a they would not put in any effort B its guarenteed to show no return (ATE THE GOLDEN GOOSE SYNDROME)numerous efforts have shown this and every request for a handout has resulted in a bigger handout next time
my comments may be wrong but never deliberately
If it aint broke, dont fix it
User avatar
geordie
 
Posts: 3867
Joined: Sun Oct 12, 2008 4:39 am

Re: 166mtrs 5 weeks 1 dead roofer??

Postby jazzman » Sat Jan 24, 2009 2:54 pm

Yes, absolutely. I initially had the same problems with my wife's family. My inlaws are young and in the prime of life, but when I married my wife they just simply stopped working, let the rice mill almost fall into disrepair, and let the pig business riun down to nothing, and some of the paddy fields were laid to waste. It's all sorted out now with a minimum of financial injection on my part; mainly by just refusing to make cash handouts for the lazy buggers.
They are now working full time, and the fields, the mill, and the pigs are beginning to show a small profit.
How to build a $20,000 / £14,000 house and a $???? MOTEL Updated 21 March 09 - with BOQ and costs
Don't let this happen in YOUR house.
jazzman
 
Posts: 2161
Joined: Wed Dec 06, 2006 9:11 pm
Location: Thailand

Re: 166mtrs 5 weeks 1 dead roofer??

Postby geordie » Sat Jan 24, 2009 3:09 pm

SORRY IF IT LOOKS LIKE I AM OFF TOPIC BUT THE HISTORY ABOVE WAS RELEVANT
Back to the build now a decision had been made to go ahead i got a number for a crane company in thailand and called a really nice lady who suggested a figure of between £250 and £500 pounds to lift the house
The price difference was because her company was on the Pattaya side of Bangkok she seemed not keen to send a crane to chayaphum but for the higher sum was prepared to do so however being unususally helpful she gave me two dead numbers for more local companys
sugesting the may only £250-£300 for the same job
The idea of the crane was to lift the old house minus its stilts and transport it to one of the farms
This idea had a few problems one of which being who was to benifit from this windfall house as her two sisters also own farms?/land and her Brothers live in shacks nobody wanted the other to gain personally i did not want the damm thing and saw it as no more than a nusance but on the farm it would give mum/dad somewhere to live while the build was taking place
While i was still going through thailand yello pages the decision was taken out of my hands
with a phone call and those heartwarming words MUM HAVE MAN MOVE HOUSE £300
Further questions reavealed mun had found someone (profesional)to move the house way to the rear of the plot thus ending the argument of ownership and resolving where they would live during the build
I was overjoyed this meant that for £300 he would move the house extend the power extend
the telephone and put the crapper temporarily in what used to be my motorbike shed at the back of the plot what an easy solution and he does this everyday for aliving so what could go wrong
Imediately the cash was transferred so that when we arrived we would have a clear area to build in and the sketches were finalized to scale showing the old house at the rear and the new at the front at last somthing positive
How could I be so stupid
my comments may be wrong but never deliberately
If it aint broke, dont fix it
User avatar
geordie
 
Posts: 3867
Joined: Sun Oct 12, 2008 4:39 am

Re: 166mtrs 5 weeks 1 dead roofer??

Postby geordie » Sun Jan 25, 2009 2:24 am

Image
Image
Image
Image


as you can see from the photo:s the hpuse by thai standards is not bad the etan tractor in the drive was a project all the timber was replaced by myself as termites had been busy I must have done a good job of it because on the next visit it had been sold
The main problem was that when the house was built there was a dirt road and when the road was made it ended up higher than the house
Another of the photo,s shows the driveway being repaired as the pipe had collapsed at this point there was still drainage that could cope to the right of the property as at the time there was an open ditch later the ditch had a pipe installed at road level putting it above the floor level
As we all know water does not easily run uphill this was the kiss of death for the downstairs which began to flood regularly a problem that became worse over time as the neighbours built up their land forcing more water onto the road whitch as usual ran downhill
The front wall of the property had been built by the family but the sides and back were finished by builders at my expense
This effectivly retained water quite well as the materials and money left for drainage became another thailand mystery
my comments may be wrong but never deliberately
If it aint broke, dont fix it
User avatar
geordie
 
Posts: 3867
Joined: Sun Oct 12, 2008 4:39 am

Re: 166mtrs 5 weeks 1 dead roofer??

Postby geordie » Sun Jan 25, 2009 4:17 pm

December the seventh was our departure date the house move was booked for the first and the family were busy booking up the local farm boys for the build
Then it went wrong i should have took it as an omen that the airport was ocupied by protestors Being a smart arse i predicted the use of utapo airport to aleviate the problem and reasured freinds and family that the new airport would be back in use in time for me to fly out
In fact i was hoping that the pound would climb against the bht because of the problems
I was half right the protestors looked like they had grown roots and the wife decided with the family that because of the protest and the poor exchange rate we would put off the build untill may unfortunately mum had jumped the gun and the house was on the move but i got to relax for 24 hours then the news that the protestors were leaving brought a sense of relief in so mutch as we would still be able to go there
Unfortunately after two days of phone calls to our agent we were told that the flight we were on had been cancelled in actual fact i got the information directly from EVA AIR before he did/ so mutch for the agent who i will hapily name as a do not use ever// pm me
Then a phone call from a friend telling me that the flight had been reinstated led me to ring the agent and ask were our seats secured again he was still in the dark and seemed to be having great dificulty contacting the ailine strange becacause when i rang them after a short delay they advised me that subject to confirmation the seats were still available but my agent would need to advise them
And so it was that on thursday the fifth we found out that we would in fact be going a sort of fearful relief set in what else would go wrong
I did not have long to wait because i have a nut allergy combined with asma friday morning when i was suposed to be last minuite shopping packing getting rid of th dogs ect i was in fact at my doctors trying to get her to sign the medical form EVA had faxed to me this was done and faxed back to them only to be followed by a phone call explaining that a page was missing yet another trip to a totally unamused doctor and the form was sent however the form had to be forwarded to taipai and they would call with an answer
And so it was i fond myself on the way to heathrow still not knowing if i was to be allowed on the plane???
I did get on
Sun 8th at last we arrive in bangkok all hyped up with no time to waste
Spent the night with my sister in law went for somthing to eat had first trip to Hospital for a nebulizer foo
d was contaminated with nuts and i have an allergy great start
At last we get in the car and after a four hour drive arrive in khaen kro to start the build
To say i was shocked by what greeted me was an understatement
The house move had not turned out quite as anticipated in fact the house had moved back on the plot by the length of the house only and now had concrete legs
The power telephone and water were not reconected
The temporary toilet was walk behind the water tanks and if you want a dump pop next door
About 80-100 trucks of dirt had been tipped into the garden to raise it sothe place resembled a moonscape
Poor old mum in law was underneath the house in the middle of this cooking on one of the clay barbecues that they love
Acsess to the house was via a ladder Thailand style made from old lumps of wood nailed together
all her posesions that were downstairs were stacked in the back of the plot where the house was suposed to be
All things considered the only way it could have got worse was if the house had fell over during the move
My wife took all this in her stride greeted mum and sat down amidst the sh-t to eat i didnt bother they had no valium which would have been more in keeping with what i needed
my comments may be wrong but never deliberately
If it aint broke, dont fix it
User avatar
geordie
 
Posts: 3867
Joined: Sun Oct 12, 2008 4:39 am

Re: 166mtrs 5 weeks 1 dead roofer??

Postby geordie » Mon Jan 26, 2009 6:43 am

Image
Image
Image
Image

I supose the only good news of the day was that dago with the blue shirt next to me in the photo had been busy recruting some labour for the project He arrived at about 2pm to see what was planned
It cheered me up no end to see him as he had done work for me in the past the only reservation i had was the three guys he brought with him looked like they were out of an old folks home
Anyway posibly because what they saw disturbed them posibly for the money the set too imediately leveling an area for mum in law to sit this was enclosed with corrugated iron sheets allowing her to use her gas burner without it blowing out the electriciian arrived and rigged an extention lead direct from the metre
None of this rocket science what i could not understand was why it was not done already
This lead to a long discusion with my wife as to why the soil had been tipped there and i was told that KHUN pa did not like the idea of a void under the floor and had insisted that the dirt be tipped there
The next question was what had happened with the house move and why was it in the wrong location and basically what had happened to the money sent to pay for it
My suspicion was and still is the money was not all given to the guy who moved the house
then came the bomshell that her sister had loaned them £700 or bht35000 to pay for the dirt fill I pointed out that for the sort of money so far spent we had better walk away now as it is obviously more expensive to build in thailand than it is in england
When things had calmed down a bit i then tried to explain the problems they had caused with their actions so far and she admitted the money had not been all spent on the house
WHAT A SUPRISE
What she could not and still will not do is tell me what happened to the money The other small problem was that not only were we faced withh digging out by hand 15"-18" of dirt that they had tipped too high we would now have to dig through the fill to find solid ground
all water of a ducks back for an inteligent woman she can be stupid at times but what really takes the pee is the way she defends her family every time
And so on Wedensday the tenth we actually started the build by removing several tons of surplus soil to the front of the houe for disposal
the aim being to give us room/ clearance under the old house for a ceiling of at least 2.7 mtrs
This meant that the floor level of the new house had been raised by one metre
The electrician returned on the wed&thu making safe the old wiring which was dangling all over and reconected the house to the mains he also restored the telephone
Precast colums were ordered and prices were sought for various materials In the meanwhile i was wandering around trying to figure out how to make a silk purse out of a sows ear as my original plans /shedule were well out the window
my comments may be wrong but never deliberately
If it aint broke, dont fix it
User avatar
geordie
 
Posts: 3867
Joined: Sun Oct 12, 2008 4:39 am

Re: 166mtrs 5 weeks 1 dead roofer??

Postby geordie » Tue Jan 27, 2009 3:29 pm

Fortunately the plans /designs i had done myself so no financial loss there and all i had to do in reality was shuffle things around a bit to allow for incorperating an upstairs
The bonus to this was i would save a fortune on roofing
Over the first day the build team was expanded very rapidly with the enhanced rates we were paying
Bottom of the food chain labourers digging mixing carrying BHT 220
medium skills blocks wet work /slow and lumpy BHT 250
GOOD skills blocks wet work fast and reasonable quality BHT 300

wet work included concrete and render in efect the team was four labourers three semis(skilled)two in betweens added to this we had the village idiot who was of no use other than cleaning and one brother salaried used as a gopher
lunch times a couple of them decided they would drink whisky it was explained to them that if they wanted an early day have a drink (uk rules dry site) the drinking stopped imediatly
This policy worked for everyone with the exception of her brother who thought it did not apply to him he got sent to the farm twice and lost his mornings wage
and of course the village idiot who liked a drink for breakfast 5-6 times he got sent home
plus about three days he did not show or legged it knowing he smelt of whisky

To aleviate the temptation to drink we apointed her brother as chef and he would make a bit of lunch for everyone BHT 200-400 daily dependant on what he fed them
around 10 am everyone got a fanta or pepsi or power drink bought for them and same in the afternoon BHT100-150
Evenings 3-4 beers 2whiskys a fanta and pepsi were given to them and every evening i would sit down with them have a glass rebukes and banter were exchanged and everyone went home relaxed knowing that if they had screwed up it was behind them tommorow was a new day and we will try not to do again
I soon learnt not do it again meant untill tommorow////
And then we had the bonus system knowing in advance how flighty the thais are from day one everybody was given the 7 day option
Basically anyone who worked 7 days was given an extra days wage I know this sounds crazy but we had strict time constraints to work to
I had assumed that they would work the 7 days and then take a day off it did not happen we lost in total about three days to sickness and only because i sent them home with the promise that their bonus was safe
The team we started with we finished with and what they lacked in skills they made up for in effort
So the first week flew past with team building and digging the digging was a nightmare and led me to suspect that things had been started a lot earlier than stated a fact verified by the ground conditions
I have had the misfortune to be on the wrong end or a shovel many times and in many soil conditions and would have expectd that the recent fill woud be an easy dig
How wrong i was we ended up bringing in a tractor with a harrow on the back to break the ground it was like iron even with the tractor the penetration was only 1-2 inches if the dozer blade was used on anything not previously ploughed the tractor stopped dead and spun its wheels
The good news was we did not need to compact the soil and the trenches did not fall in
Priority was given to the post holes 1.25x1.5 dp 1 was gratefull for the old foundationd which saved us having to dig deeper also we tied in to the rebar on the old floor i would feel safe with giving a guarentee on the foundations
In total the post holes ate around 12 mtrs cubed at BHT1350 as we stopped the concrete below ground so we could sit the precast posts on top and cast the ground beams aroud them not the cheapest of options but defintely quick and solid
the post holes got there fill on saturday our fourth working day the ground beams were still being dug but it gave a sense or reasurance the back of the house and underneath were now roughly the right height to allow a ceiling the back and front posts holes were dug apart from two for the canopy
Only question what to do with the 25-30 mtrs of surplus soil???
my comments may be wrong but never deliberately
If it aint broke, dont fix it
User avatar
geordie
 
Posts: 3867
Joined: Sun Oct 12, 2008 4:39 am

Next

Return to Your Building Story

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: Bing [Bot], Google Adsense [Bot] and 1 guest