Small House, Earthblock, Costs, Owen

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Here is a rough estimate for the earth blocks. I drew a square 18’x18’ with interior CEB walls to divide the living, kitchen, bath and bedroom, plus a covered entry. I didn’t deduct blocks for windows and doors because they’ll go towards the 3’ high entry and balcony walls.

Total number of blocks = 1,660
Estimated cost per block = 20 cents (price in India might be lower than Thailand)
Total cost of blocks = $332

Note how we’ve eliminated grout and vertical rebar. Walls are short and reinforce each other. The bond beam ties them all together. The simple grid means there’s very little cutting of blocks except at doors and windows where we make half blocks.

Estimated labor at $4/day for 2 workers and $2/day for 2 workers for one day to set CEBs: $48 labor

  • Total labor on house for 7 days x $48 labor = $336
  • Plumbing, electrical, ceiling fan, shelves are very simple and so won’t cost much. $100
  • Cabinets are low fired brick covered with tile = $100
  • Floor is colored concrete $200 (extra if we use tile)
  • Doors, windows, security grates = $300 (guess)
  • Septic tank $50
  • Concrete roof: $150
  • Stairs $50
  • Paint $25
  • Roof framing $400
  • Roofing $100
  • Grade beam and trench $50
  • Deliveries $100
  • Subtotal: $1,625
  • Total cost of materials and labor: $2,293
  • Land 20 km from town? $1,000
  • Taxes and closing costs? $200
  • Grand total approx. $3,500
  • Selling price of USD $4,500 leaves $1,000 for profit.