How to avoid potential disasters when building your home without a GC…

and possible consequences when you choose to DIY


Why hire an architect, designer or builder when you know what you want, and you know how to do it (or have some friends who are willing to help)?  Go ahead and start building!!!

Please don’t, for your own sake.  Are you aware of the local and national building codes?  Are you or your friends versed in civil, structural, mechanical, or electrical engineering?  Will you feel confident that you won’t be electrocuted because your home is not properly grounded?  How do you feel about paying out a large settlement to a friend who is hurt on your property?  If you are comfortable with any of these situations, you have more guts than anyone I know.

Please DO – Go through the proper channels and have your building inspected by the proper authorities (see permit point below) and built by the experts!

Building without a permit might sound like a great way to avoid delays in starting construction.  Plus you get the added bonus of not needing those pesky inspections that are holding back your moving into your dream home.  DON’T DO IT!!!  Building departments not only adhere to most local and national codes, but some may have their own requirements to hire contractors and subcontractors that are licensed and insured within the municipality (and state licensed in some cases).  Unless you want a big fat STOP WORK ORDER, we suggest playing by the rules for your own protection.  Permitting and inspections go hand in hand with doing things right (as noted in the above section).


  • Sourcing materials from multiple locations may end up with different lots (tile or flooring may not match even though the manufacturer is the same)
  • Tiles may lay uneven, have bad cuts, or large grout joints. In shower situations, leaking may occur if all proper steps are not completed
  • Ordering cabinetry from a big box store without a designer can leave you with cabinetry that does not fit (especially if the framing and drywall is not plumb and square)
  • Framing is not properly designed for loads on flooring or roof. This is not only an architectural issue, but a structural one that is unsafe!
  • Fixtures may not line up with electrical or plumbing in walls and floors leading to bad or awkward layouts. Ordering foreign fixtures online may have different connections that are incompatible with the S.

Amanda Regelin, Sr. Project Manager (Residential and Commercial Divisions)

Please feel free to contact us at or 219-488-2400 for more useful tips, and don’t forget to view our latest projects at and


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