Changing Our Time Line For Retirement and Building Our House.


This is a picture of our drive way that we had to have three loads of gravel put down so we could get our concrete poured in our pole barn.

This is a picture of our drive way that we had to have three loads of gravel put down so we could get our concrete poured in our pole barn.

As some of you may have already noticed that my time line for my retirement count down that I have to the right on my site has changed to December 31, 2015. We have also pushed back the date 7 months from when we are going to start to build our log home from Aug. 31 2015 to April 2016. There was several reason why I have changed the time line but there was a main reason and that is what I will explain here.

The main reason why we have changed the start date of our new home was because I am acting as our general contractor and even though we plan on doing most of the work ourselves there are some things that we will not be doing so I have been getting bids for those. Things like the basement, heating and cooling, septic system, and to build the roof with rafters, sheeting and roofing material. Even though we are capable of doing our own roof I thought I would hire some company to do it with us planning to start building so late in the year to make sure we would get it weather tight before winter would set in. The two bids I had sent out came back at around 30,000 and I felt that was at least 10,000 more than what they should have been. We are trying to keep cost down and we are not willing to pay over 20,000 more for something we feel we can do ourselves, so we have decided to wait now until the following spring in April of 2016 to start our log home so we can do it  ourselves. The materials are only about 10,000 at the most so we will save a significant amount of money. Since we won’t be building the house until April I didn’t want to be bored and sitting around the house with nothing to do so I thought I would work until Dec. 31, 2015 and this would give us a chance to save up more money.

Believe me when I tell you I am a little bummed that we won’t be starting the house this year, but my wife and I talked about it and we feel it is the right thing to do.


About Gordon Milligan

I am a retired conductor for a commuter railroad in Chicago IL, I now live in and have bought a 40 acre farm in South Central Iowa that I have built from the ground up. My wife and I are trying to raise and grow most of my own food using sustainible and organic methods. I have a blog that journals my journey to becoming a farmer.
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13 Responses to Changing Our Time Line For Retirement and Building Our House.

  1. Zephyr Hill says:

    Oh man, Gordon, I’m so bummed for you! It sounds like a wise decision, but one of those you would rather not have had to make. That’s okay, though, I’ll keep counting the days with you–just a little longer!

  2. Jewels says:

    It’s so hard to wait, especially when the time is getting so close. Hang in there Gordon…

  3. Langela says:

    Were the bids for all that work? Our barn cost around $7k to put up and tin. Basements usually cost around 10k, septics about 7k, hvac about 7k. Being that you are only having a roof put on and not an entire building, 30k may be a bit much, but I’m not sure if 20k is doable. Just a thought. Are any of the bids from Amish? I’d also let them know what the other bids are for and see who will beat the price.

  4. The two bids I did get back were from two different Amish companies. The one that did our pole barn for 8,500 was the highest bid at 31,000 I am thinking how can you build a whole building for that but can’t put a roof on for less than 31,000. Anyway I have priced out the material for the roof with 2×12’s, plywood and tin for the roof just like whats on the pole barn and it comes out just under 10k. We have had several bids for the basement and they both come out around 20k with excavation and everything. Septic is estimated to be from 8 to 10k and hvac is the same at 8 to 10k. If you know of any companies that you can suggest for those items would be appreciated. Thanks Langela.

    • on the HVAC.. suggest high SEER mini split systems .. I have found 24000btu (two ton units cheap.. 1200 to 1500 each.. when I say high seer.. that is 20+ which means they are super efficient
      Looking at your pictures I would actually forgo them since you have already thought about putting in earth tube.. I would do a combination of closed loop and open loop
      The biggest reason is that you will not have much energy use even when compared to the most efficient mechanical systems.

  5. Bill says:

    I pushed my date back a couple of times too. I definitely understand.

    But it eventually happened (less than a year past my original plan) and with the benefit of a few years behind me now, I’m glad I did it. You probably will be too.

  6. Thanks for letting me know that Bill, its nice to know I am not that only one who has had to change his time line . By the way I Love the picture of you and your pig,

  7. Jon says:

    Adapt and overcome? Great to see the updates.

  8. Carol says:

    Gordon: It will be here before you know it, hang in there. Just think you won’t have to another winter on Metra, you will have a new job. It will be worth waiting for.

  9. Thanks for your encouraging words Carol and you are right, I will not have to do another January or February at Metra again Yahoo.

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