My Sorta Finished House

My Sorta Finished House

This is my finished-looking house. That is, there is a lot more to do but the street view looks pretty much complete. There are lots of photos of the construction along the way in this gallery. It was a one-story house with a flat roof build for a second floor. As there were cracks in that roof it was either fix it of build the second floor. So, I built it. The upstairs part is a deck in front, office, two bedrooms and a bathroom. The double front railing is because part of the deck is designed to be a space for potted plants.

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He lies, that's really Dora's house. ;-)

Guest Room?

Miskito Alan asks "Is there any desiginated guest room for him and "Carmen"?


Esteli & fyl's New House

Many comments have been posted recently regarding the costs of Ncaraguan real estate. I believe that real estate prices are still a function of "supply and demand". The amount of money that a willing seller will sell and a willing buyer will buy is the "market price" all over the world.

Phil bought a "fixer-upper" (for lack of a better term) in Esteli and has remodeled the original bottom floor and he has added a second floor on top of the original cement roof. Many additional pictures of this construction are available on the "NicaLiving" photo section under "fyl".

Live in an area for a year and listen and learn real estate market values and then make a selection or rent until you find the house that you want at the price that you want to pay. __________________________________________________________________

nice crib!

Man after my own heart. I am finishing up an old house here [1873], my second rehab project in 15 years. This one will be rented to HUD which here locally is paying $459 for a one bedroom [this is a duplex,2 one bdr. units] Direct deposit, and have someone to manage the whole thing while i'm gone. Yours shows ALOT of hard work done. Hats off to you. So do you have building inspectors to deal with, red tape and the like that complicates the system here? Just curious.

500 sqft addition

I added a 500 sqft addition to my home in Managua, No permits, No inspectors. Life is good!

No Inspections?


INSIDE Managua, and you don't need permits? AMAZING!

Here in Oregon, I live 15 miles outside of a small town on a rolling 5 acres of sage brush and oak. I could have built here 18 years ago, but missed my chance, because I was building a house next door. Now they only laugh at me when I go into the planning desk. However, Oregon recently passed Measure 37, giving us landowners of old our rights back. I was waiting on the courthouse doorstep the first day I could apply for my waiver. I got it approved on February 16, 2005 and immediately applied for a building permit. I'm still waiting on it, but am told it will go through.

However, my dad, with 40 acres (and lots of other folks did this too), waited to see whether this thing would really work out. Once a few of us made it thru the tunnel, they applied. A couple of weeks ago a judge up in Salem declared Measure 37 unconstitutional. The approval process for Measure 37 was halted. I have 12 clients now whose applications are on hold. Could be two weeks, two years, or NEVER.

Oregon is SCREWED when it comes to land use laws. If I do get my permit, I can count on $6000 of permit fees and other hoops to jump through.

But Oregon is screwed when it comes to lots of stuff. Why am I still here? Oh ya, legally I cannot sell my crap yet.

Ah to be in the promised land of Nica! Where you can build a house (or HAVE it built!) for the price of a PERMIT cycle in the US. Did I mention I already have $5000 into the process? The more I think of it, the less I want to develop this land.


What's a building inspector?

Ok, they exist but in a very different way. First, I am in the city. In the campo, just don't expect anything from the government in the way of controls.

I got a permit to do the addition. You pay based on the number of square meters you are adding. That's it. You don't show them plans or anything--just pick a number and pay. I forget what it cost but it was no biggie. Maybe $100.

They will likely come out "to inspect" once. They did in my case. They told me that I could not have windows on the side of the house that was on the property line. I know this. Everyone told me that I was going to have to wall up that side of the house.

Well, there aren't windows. There is a walkway that is open to the side. I told the people working on the house that. They said, "I don't think that was what they mean. You have to wall it in." My response was "later".

All done. Side is open. They never came back to see if I changed anything. If they do I will tell them that I will be filling it in but don't have the money right now. But, the chance of them ever looking again is right around zero.

On the electrical, I did it all myself. It is probably the only private house in Esteli where at least the electrical for the top floor meets the U.S.-based National Electrical Code. But, that was just me doing it right. Zero permit or inspection about that.

"Izod John" - Serious Please

Miskito Alan says that with you drawing "dumpster houses" and "slaughter houses" and "airplanes" and spending all of your time on "NicaLiving" and the "Airplane whaterever Site"; have you ever drawn a picture of a house?

This is reminding me of the "Flight of the Phoenix" where the escape plane was designed by the "model-airplane drawer of pictures".


Your home

Esthetically there is nothing wrong with your home. It is quite lovely and the poles look natural. If a person wants Corinthian columns, move to Greece.


Where did you buy the materials for your house as I will be building a new home near San Carlos and will need to look for construction supplies.

If you were in Estelí ...

If you were in Estelí you wouldn't be asking. Estelí is the "supply city" for this entire region. That means there are lots of hardware stores, autoparts stores and construction supply places.

The materials come from an assortment of them. For example, I was looking for some strange electrical supplies. When to the little place I usually go to. He checked with another place around the corner and then gave me directions to a third place that did have the parts.

If you are doing typical construction, you need bricks, rebar and cement. It is a no-brainer to find this. The only thing that was brought from Managua was the roofing and that was ordered locally.

One more question

Typically how much does the cement, concrete blocks and Bricks Cost?

Viva la Raca-taca!

Cement I know

I have cement receipts. Looks like 89 cordobas/bag. Have never bought real cement blocks and don't nave the info on the decorative ones you see in the picture.. Bricks must be cheap--they seem to be made in everyone's back yard.

Ok, an update. I just got the receipt for the bricks. 1000 bricks (I probably needed 500 and these are the worst looking bricks I have ever seen) for C$900. The amusement (I guess) is that I bought them from an auto repair shop. I am guessing it has a lot to do with Sylvia Torres Rugama deciding that Jose Manuel Torrez R. needed some money. Groan.

Big place

Are those Garage doors on the side, part of your property as well? I would like to see the house once you have all the plants coming off of that front section. Just curious have you thought about beefing up those two pipe looking columns in the front?


Yes, they are. The whole lot, house and doors, is 12 varas. That makes the house maybe 9--not as big as it seems. It is so tall because I wanted a single slope of the Nicalit roof for the front part of the house and half the deck. You need a 12 degree slope. Because of where the support columns are downstairs, most of that roof is on the front side.

There are three pipes. That area is only maybe a meter wide and we added two inches of concrete with a serious rebar mesh on top of what was there so I think it is fine.

just an idea

I was refering to the fact that those pipes LOOK weak even though they dont need to be big and bulky, it might look a lot better if they built some type of broad column around it, even if its only for appearance and not for structure.