Thursday, March 15, 2012

#Kerala House Construction-Replies to your queries



Anonymous   has left a new comment on your post "Answers to your queries #Architecture":

I would like to build a Home around 2000-2200 SQ ft in Trivandrum in 5 cents, would you please recommend me a Builder & Designer and what would be the cost per Sq Ft ...?need your assistant

My reply

Such posting of comments in blogs without revealing your identity or email  cannot get you a reply from me as it will not be practically feasible for me to reply to comments in all blogs

So those who want replies from me please write your queries/comments/suggestions to

How can any one recommend or suggest a builder? There is not even two builders/contractors following same construction practices or procedures.When you try to find a contractor who quotes “lowest square feet cost” for construction ,contractor in turn try to  build your house with lowest labour charges and lowest material content to increase his profit

Contactor/Builder has only one objective in building your house: Get maximum profit.Quality of construction is simply for the talk making you believe that his quality of work is the best.You simply believe him and consider yourself as smart for getting the “best quality construction” at lowest cost! But the builder/contractor is definitely more knowledgeable about construction than you.He knows how to misguide you who knows very little about construction

Just try to put a good Architect or Engineer and tell the contractor to do construction as per drawings and instructions of your consultant.Then watch the fun.Contractor/builder will demand a higher cost if you introduce a person who knows about construction in between.



Ramnath   has left a new comment on your post "Elevation for three bed house":

I have a 8 cent plot that is rectangular. i am planning a house in the range of 35 lacs , anyone having a plan/elevation for a single storied house please email it to

My reply

8 cents is only area of land.It does not give any idea about dimensions of each of four sides.Also we have no idea of the position of roads near plot.To consider Vasthu aspects,directions also has to be considered.

So how can you simply take plan and Elevation of somebody else for your house? I simply do not understand why people talk like this.



Anonymous   has left a new comment on your post "Replies to your queries#Architecture":

I am an NRI Mechanical Engineer like to build a 2500-2800 sq. ft. house in Cochin and on the look out for 8 cents of land (which is my budget) and identified few plots.
Appreciate if you could let me know the best possible size of plot in 8 cents to have a good architect designed house
I understand that the house can be designed to suite the plot but prefer to buy a plot where in design can be flexible

My reply

If I tell  a particular length and width of plot,will anybody sell you a plot of same dimension in Kerala that too in Cochin? Impossible.

If you have to identify a plot best suited to you ,take an expert who knows about Structural Engineering,Architecture,Vasthu and Kerala Building rules to the plot or plots you have identified and get his comments/advice before finalising the plot.



Hello Mr. Thomas,

I am a frequent visitor of your blogs, Nice experience. I want know about Parabolic roof design, now a days people are doing this, I want know more about this how this design and how its covering with glass advantages & disadvantages. Hope you will reply

My reply

It is not my intention to educate people about every terminology that come in House design/Construction.For getting such details,you have various sources.If you cannot find proper sources for getting more info,you can try googling.



Anonymous   has left a new comment on your post "Flooring for house-options":

How much it cost to get 3200sgft granite installed.,any idea ?

My reply

First of all Granite laying for floors is fast becoming outdated like marble flooring.There are much more better,cheaper alternatives which are more trendy and environment friendly

Getting labour for building construction is becoming difficult as days pass.There is no such thing as a universally accepted standard granite laying charges.Again each of the labour contractor does the work in different manner.So you cannot compare charges of one with charges of another.Your Architect for the work will be able to guide you on this.



Menon has left a new comment on your post "Queries and replies-House design,construction ,rem...":

I am a retiree in Cochin residing in Chittoor Road. I have two houses separated hardly by 5-10 ft. I am interested in joining the terraces together and have a terrace garden and retreat with a small bed room, bath and kitchen on one so that It can be self contained also. I need someone to conceptualize the idea so that I can look at the possibilities. Can you do it please? or can you recommend someone please?

My reply

For any modification/remodeling/renovation work,I will have to visit the site and study all aspects related to modification you are thinking of.First of all it has to be checked whether the modification is feasible at all.

Without any doubt it can be said that modification will be much more costly than building new and no one can safely estimate cost involved as you will be working on a building about which you know practically nothing.As you break and cut in to old building parts it may present you new problems to be solved.

Unless you have so much sentimental reasons to retain the old building by  modifying and not simply bothered about cost involved,do not attempt remodeling.Try to design and build a new building instead of trying to work with old building.Lot of people have a mistaken notion that modifying is cheaper.It is not so.

Sunday, March 11, 2012

#Kerala House Construction-Replies to your queries

Vasthu Compliance


Naveen   has left a new comment on your post "Vasthu compliance":

I am planning to dig a bore well in North East.Happened to hear the bore well should not cut the diagonal line connecting NE to SW. It can be on either side of the line in North East corner.
Already a well exists in South East but goes dry during last two Summers. Hope there is no dosham in closing the well.

My Reply

If such queries are sent as email to my email id other than simply typing in blog as comment,I could have replied faster by email reply

Well at South East is not good as per Vasthu.So you can close it without any second thought about it

House at Trivandrum



I am Sudheer hails from Trivandrum, Kerala.Me an IT person now in Saudi Arabia. I used to visit your blog and from that I inspired to write to you..

Actually I owned a plot one month back at Vembayam on the way to Trivandrum. It is 7 cent and having measurement of 16.5m* 17.5m.eastern side have road. Like others, me also have dream home in mind. Maximum space utilization,low cost, maximum outer area(courtyard),3 bed room, three toilets(One can be common),prayer room are my demands. Since financial situation is not stable for me now. With the help of one home designing software I draw a plan and area got is 1800 Sq.ft. If you don’t mind I will send the outline of plot and my drawn plan to you for a final decision making. I know that it may have defects and an architect can advice on that. Is it possible to hold the cost within 15 lakhs? can I get  support from you at site at Trivandrum if we proceed. So please give me a reply if you are interested then I will proceed with you……..

Sudheer M

My reply

Cost of building a house  cannot be calculated or even guessed by knowing possible square feet area of house being  planned.Contractors with eye on profit alone plan construction in a manner reducing both labour and material and they simply are not bothered even about structural stability of the building.

Those who prepare Plan and Elevation of the house never ever make the client understand that plan of the house is the most important critical drawing for a house construction.Even the client think that providing an attractive looking Elevation is the only work an Architect is supposed to do.Of course Architect should have creative talent.But he is not just another painter to create a good painting.Drawing an Attractive looking Elevation is rather easy.Just by getting that picture,your concrete mason cannot do anything.He has to be guided,instructed by an Architect.Some times,he may not even have the expertise to do whatever is drawn

With the present cost indications which are likely to go up in the next one year or more you may take to complete construction,You cannot expect a three bed house to be completed in just Rs.15 lakhs.Some cost reduction is possible if you are willing to give a free hand to your Architect instead of considering him as some one who will make some modifications in your plan

I need to visit the site,understand your requirements well before starting to design your house.While preparing a plan in Kerala conditions an Architect considers at least the following:

1. Information provided by you on your needs, desires and hopes for the house.

2. Vasthu aspects

3. Traditional Kerala Architecture features

4. Modern architecture features

5. Structural engineering aspects to reduce cost of construction

6. Kerala Building Rules

7. Features of site and surroundings

Do you think you have expertise and experience to do this?



Hi Sir,

I have  1.96  cents of land in Palakkad municipality   Total extent as per submitted plan 8.75 (East - West) 9.10 (north - South) building permit sanctioned  providing 1.8 from the west 100cm from the north, 90 cm from the south, exemption to the east (NOC).  On measurement 8.40 (East - West) 9.10 (north - South). constructed the ground floor providing 1.80m from the west, 60cm from the south and 60cm from the north.  Southern neighbour complained to the local authority that 90 cm distance from my boundary not provided.  Can I continue the construction work as done? In order to get over from this crisis kindly give me your valuable suggestions and legal assistance

My reply

As per relaxed Building rule provisions for plots less than 3 cents,minimum clearance required for sides is 90 cm.If you have provided less than 90 cm at sides,it is violating building rules

Only option possible is to get concurrence from owner of property in that side for abutment

Please consult concerned Building inspector of local authority to get more information



Dear Mr. Thomas,

As discussed, we have funded an orphanage in Kannur, Kerala.We believe that the project has been overvalued and we are paying excessive amount to the contractors.

We would like to know if you can undertake a survey for the valuation of this project.

Please let us know your charges and we shall forward you the required details.

Saurabh Shah

Internal Audit Manager

Meera Company LLC

My reply

A Site visit by me to the site,assessing work so far done,obtaining relevant details from contractor,checking up your contract terms are all required to verify the facts

Are you willing to pay for the charges involved?



Mathew Isaac has left a new comment on your post "# Kerala Architecture- Replies to client queries":

I have seen a six cent plot having road on three sides of the plot. Do I need to leave 3m from all the three sides???

My Reply

As per KBR if the road do not go beyond 75 M,you have to leave only 2M

Checking up with the concerned local authority office will be better as they will be able to give you clear answer,considering locally relevant issues also

Monday, March 5, 2012

#Kerala House Construction-Replies to your queries


Dear Thomas

I have visited your blogs and websites and found interesting.

I am planning to build a house near Yelahanka, Bangalore. Let me know whether you have a team here in Bangalore from your office who could execute construction of a 30 x 40 plot size. This plot is located in Rajanakunte town limits (next to Prestige Oasis Row Houses and diagonally opposite to Prestige's Angsana Resort). It's 7 kms away from Yelahanka town limits (on the way to Doddaballapur Road).

My reply

Most important part of building a house or any other type of building is to get the most appropriate Plan of the building considering Architectural aspects which ensure proper utilisation of every bit of built up space,deriving maximum utility from every bit of building space,Cost reduction and better external appearance.

A person who has undergone a professional course in Architecture get enough insights to design most appropriately.More than the formal training a true Architect study and experiment a lot while designing and building.Over a period of years he develops his own unique style and approach which keep on getting fine tuned and improvised  as study never ends in the life of a professional

Any one with a bit of drawing training can draw a plan of the building.If you consider such a plan of the building which you may get for a name sake payment  equal or similar to one you can get from an established experienced Architect who has proven his capabilities,it is you who is going to suffer by wastage of lakhs of money in building.As an end user you come to know about deficiencies in design only when the building gets completed.Then it will be too late to do anything by any body.

Difference with you and an established professional is that he can visulaise and see clearly in his mind every minute detail of the building which he visualises using his training and experiences.You can only see the external appearance of what he may draw for you to see.Even that drawing keep on getting improved in his mind as work progresses and he make suitable changes in his mind depending upon varying site inputs.

So even when you build in Bangalore or any where else,a good design is the most important part of building.Let us first get that appropriate design and then think about contract work for the building




We are from Malappuram. we come across some of your nice designs. we plan to construct a house around 1500 sq. ft. could u please send d Elevation for three bed room house designed by u


My reply

See,this is how people think!

” Any one can make plan of house.Only an Architect can do a good Elevation.So get a good Elevation from an Architect.Give it to a local draftsman.He will make a plan!”

See how ignorant our people are on these.Quite often I hear people willing to pay for Elevation ,but not for plan of the house!



Hello sir,

Can we build a 2000sq.ft. house in 4 cents of rectangular plot with all minimum necessities

My reply

Cents is only area of land and it does not give any idea on dimensions of plot on all four sides,which is the information a designer need to design the house.Positions of roads near plot is also important.For Vasthu compliance,information on direction is also required

In general terms without information on dimensions of sides,I can give a vague indication that 4 Bed room house with all normal facilities can be built in a 4 cents land,as I have done so even in 3.5 cents land

Sunday, March 4, 2012

Kerala Architecture and House Construction-Replies to Your queries

What will be Cost of Construction?


Dear Mr.Thomas,

I got your contacts from your website, I am attaching here with my purposed house plan (first floor), I would like to know how much it will cost to build it , the ground floor already built  10 years back(attached the photo), now I need to add a first floor on it

My house situated in Anakkayam Panchayath,Malapuram District

Looking forward to hear from you

My reply

You have already got a Plan and Elevation for the house from some body else.Naturally you would have asked this question to him and he might have given you some answer.To counter check his answer you are simply sending this email to me.

I do not have any magical capability to say cost of construction just by seeing a plan or Elevation of a building.No body will know exactly how much a building will cost till the date of completion of the building.All cost estimates are only assumptions.Nobody knows what will be the cost of materials and labour tomorrow or in months to come.

Apartment and Villa builders sell at almost three times their cost and there is no quality of construction checking by any body.No two contractor do the construction in the same manner.So cost for each will be different.Apart from making profit,practically no contractor bothers about quality of construction or even structural stability of building.There is no government agency to verify and check quality and strength of construction at each stage of construction.If at all such an agency is there,in our corruption country,such an agency will simply turn out to be another government agency for corruption.

So when you want to build your house with best possible engineering,architecture and quality of construction,if you are not willing to accept compromise on quality of construction,there is no way of predicting exactly how much building will cost.Cost also varies from place to place,with different land levels,soil conditions,design variations etc.

If I can visit site,study site conditions,improve on plan already prepared based on site study,I can prepare an Engineering Estimate using engineering methods.Cost thus arrived is the nearest cost calculation possible and just by looking at a plan I cannot predict or estimate cost of construction.



Dear Sir

I am from Madhya Pradesh .I visited the Kerala in last march and observed a wooden design in almost all houses in porches and balconies. What does it called. I am building my house in Bhopal and use the same thing in the front porch of my house. I visited your site and the houses designed by you also have the same design. Is that wooden material available in Kerala readily are it can be get it be done here by local carpenter.

C K Santani

My reply

It seems what you are referring is “Charupady” mostly made in teak wood.This cannot be made there in Madhya Pradesh using local carpenter as the technology used will be unfamiliar to them.Again this is manufactured to suit site requirements,client preferences etc.

For each house this will have to be specifically designed and manufactured.There is also traditional  Kerala Window which is used to cover entire Balcony open space while giving ventilation and traditional look



Hi Thomas,
A very good day to you,
This is Sanjay with you, me and my wife are presently working in Dubai...
Was browsing through some websites and found your blog.
I own a small plot of 12 cents in Ootty opposite Good Shepherd Intl School & would like to construct a 2 BHK villa-(intent to rent). I have taken an approval from the panchayat a year back for the same.
Wanted to know whether you could look into it if I send you the approved drawings. (do you take construction jobs in Ootty?)
My other property is in Mannar-Alleppey Dist...22 cents with an old house, with 2 "aras" need to keep that intact and construct new house.
need a feedback on both..
 My reply

I have designed and built a 6000 sft house at Ootty for a local Software Engineer couple some time back.Details of this house is available at my blog

I will have to visit site at Ootty,design the house and then only I can comment on possibility and feasibility of directly taking up construction there.Similar is the case with your Mannar property



I would like to build a home in Varkala.
my budget estimate is 20 lakhs.
My plot with an area of 12 cent.
i want  a traditional two storied house plan
with Nadumuttam,Charupadi and four bedroom facilities.
kindly send me the details of such a plan.


My reply

Nalukettu type house has following essential features

1.Nadumuttom at centre of house

2.Poomukham at entrance to house

2.Sit out with Charupady at front and side

Adding these features will naturally cause higher cost for the house.With Rs.20 lakhs it will be practically impossible to have all these features going by present cost of inputs of building construction.As cost of construction is only going up,you need to go for Nalukettu type construction only if you have sufficient funds.

Typical Tharavadu type house


Dear Mr.Thomas,
We are planning to build a  typical Kerala model traditional house,I mean 'Odu' type tiles and 'kaavi' type flooring with modern bedroom and wash rooms..The external outlook has to be of a typical 'tharavad' type house with a traditional Poomukham and a small 'court yard'(Nalukettu) model..We have an existing studio type house which we normally use as a holiday home,when we come down.
The land is in Trissur, 1 acre.The plan is to built a 3 bedroom,hall + dining,kitchen,storage and a car porch.
I would like to know from you, your views on the same and how we can move ahead on this..
My reply

Your dreams about house are fine.As a professional I need data and details not simply dreams.A site visit,detailed study of your requirements are the first requirements to start the project

Can we move step by step?

Cast iron gate and Interlock tiles


Hi Thomas,

I am looking for cast iron sliding gate for my new house location at Alleppey.

Also interlock for external areas.

Are you doing for the same? If you are interested, please let me know so that I  shall send u the details.

My reply

As a professional organisation we need more details to offer our services for supply of cast iron gate and to provide interlock tile laying details.To study the case in detail and to give you offer suitable for your site conditions,we have to visit your site.Naturally we will have to charge you for site visit and related study

Normally people expect the supplier to do site visit at their expenses and give an offer which client may or may not accept.Supplier is supposed to bear the cost as his promotional expenses.But when the supplier has enough business,he may not be willing to spend time and money on such promotional site visits

Are you willing to spend from your side?