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How to Build a Great Guest House

Guest houses have become extremely popular in recent years. A guest house, also called casita or mother-in-law quarters, can be a wonderful way to provide living space for an adult child, aging parent, personal workspace office or studio, or even for rental income. Before embarking on your journey, you’ll want to take several factors into consideration.

Purpose

The purpose your guest house will serve plays a huge part in the planning of it. If it is being built for a parent who is getting older, you may want to consider making sure there are ramps and no stairs. If it’s to rent out, you probably want to ensure access to parking that doesn’t interfere with your own parking setup. In the event your guest house will be strictly for guests, you’ll want to accommodate that aspect. Thoroughly thinking through what purpose the house will serve will save you many hassles and headaches later on. Learn more at ChestnutFlooring.

Space

Cities have zoning codes you must adhere to. Some won’t allow you to build all the way out to your property line. Knowing the restrictions before you draw up the blueprint is imperative otherwise, they’ll be overrode by the authorities and you’ll have to start over from scratch.

Style

Before you get too far in your house plans, you should decide what style of a home you want. Since it will be an unattached extension of the home you already have on the property, you’ll want it to at least blend nicely with the aesthetics of your main house. The way you’ll build a rustic cottage is different than if you are going mid-century modern. Keep in mind the materials you use and the shape of the home when trying to achieve a certain look and feel. If you are going to have wood flooring, you’ll want to incorporate your style even in the wood you choose such as having lighter, glossier wood for a minimalistic air and weathered wood for a more rustic approach.  

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Budget

Set a budget and stick to it as best you can. Know the market and the prices thereof. Find out what materials are going for and the current price of labor. The average cost of a 600-square-foot guest home runs between $45,000 and $60,000. Be sure to get more than one quote from a construction company in order to find the best price but make sure the one you go with isn’t less expensive because they cut corners. Do whatever work you can on your own to save and when possible, find materials, like flooring or cabinets, on sale. Be prepared for surprises and occasional setbacks. Expecting the unexpected will keep you from being floored if something does happen. 

In the End

If you have done the math and are well-prepared, building your guest house should go smoothly. You’ll be able to put the house into use in due time and reap the rewards of having a fully functioning guest house that will service its purpose for years to come. 

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