It is possible to achieve a great home design on a low budget. To achieve this, you have to invest a lot in architectural design. A good example is Allan Donovan’s house in Kitengela, which is designed with a West African concept on a flat roof with lockers on the parapet wall.
Another example is Hacienda Eco City Development in Mombasa, which is also designed coincidentally to a West African / Islamic architectural concept with a flat roof and lockers on the parapet.
The Presidential State Lodge in Sagana, Nyeri is also a magnificent piece of architecture that has used architectural design to achieve greatness without necessarily using very expensive materials. It is a simple rectangular house with hipped roofs and low aluminum casement windows.
Technology uses also affect the budget. Newer, lighter roofing materials, such as stone-faced steel shingles, save the amount of wood trusses used to support the roof.
The choice of the type of foundation will also affect costs. Farms like Jericho in the Eastlands area were built on a raft-like foundation that is very cheap to install. The ground floor slab rests on small beams that are placed on the ground so that no excavations or foundation walls are made.
On the superstructure walls, within the Nairobi area, masonry stone is readily available so it is not expensive. A cost-effective way to achieve elegance is to have the stones dressed by hand in a pattern to your liking. Hand-carved stones bring out the character of your home and will save you in terms of maintenance, as they require practically no maintenance at all.
Manufactured houses are slowly coming to the Kenyan market. These houses are the solution for affordable housing in developed economies like the United States, China and Europe and it is a matter of time until they find their niche in Kenya.
In conclusion, architectural design and the use of proper technology can greatly reduce the cost of building your home.