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What Do I Need to Do Before I Can Break Ground?

Before you break ground you will need to address soft costs. Soft costs are the costs incurred before the first shovel hits the ground or the first nail is hammered. This includes the design and plans which may also include consultant fees. For a custom design, plans will need to be created from scratch by a draftsman or architect. However, purchasing pre-designed plans saves thousands of dollars by eliminating this costly phase and going straight into the permitting phase of the process. Also included in soft costs are consultant fees such as civil engineers for steep lots, title 24 energy consultants and structural engineers. These vary based on jurisdiction. Permit fees are also included in soft costs. The cost of building materials, labor and construction management are all included in the hard costs. These are the costs to actually construct the accessory structure once a building permit has been obtained. Soft costs can be between 5 and 10 percent of your total budget.

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