Monday, September 30, 2013

House Construction Pearl Lagoon Style

Pat removing wood supports for the base of the wall
Building the family home is a family affair here in Pearl Lagoon. There are no construction companies or architects to call on to help you design, layout and construct your house. Every family member (and any friends you can recruit) have a share in the construction.

There is nowhere local in Pearl Lagoon to purchase bricks for the walls - so you have to make them yourself! So... even before you layout the design of the house the family is usually already preparing tonnes of bricks. Once you have enough bricks prepared the property is cleared and the foundation outlines are sighted, dug and cemented with re-bar. Some homes only have cement walls halfway to the roof with the remainder wood. This is a far less expensive way of building. Other homes have bricks all the way up to the roof.  You will find very few buildings have a second floor.

You will notice in the following pictures that there is very little in the way of PPE worn on the building lot - there are no "work boots" to be seen. Surprisingly, there are very few accidents on these construction sites - there are more injuries that happen at the local bars each week.

 Since we have been here in Pearl Lagoon we have assisted with a couple of "house building" projects. With the Padilla family home we helped with the foundation and laying some of the first layer of bricks.

Preparing to mix cement

Everyone is helping out

Waiting for the cement

Digging so the foundation boards can be put in place

Taking a rest after moving all the bricks

Sticking bricks

Making sure the brick is level

Filling cracks

Filling Cracks

This is the house we are helping with this week. The Blake family has managed to bring it this far by themselves, but now the rush is one to get it finished and have the family move in by the middle of October. Only part of the house will be completed now. The porch, front entrance and third bedroom will be finished at a later date.

Since this picture was taken a few weeks ago the iron bars for the windows have been installed as well as the front and back metal doors.

Preparing the struts.

Removing the dirt in the "tool room"

Welding the struts

Pat taking a break

Putting the struts in place

Taking a rest in the "garden"
 We will post updates as these homes progress.