Villas in Kochi

Building on The Coast

September 3, 2019

Do you have a plan to build a beach home? Here are a few tips to get started.

When you purchase a property, the elevation certificate must be evaluated. Some properties require the first-floor elevation (the height from the ground level to the top of your first living level) to be 12′, 13′, 14′ feet or higher. This added height to the foundation level will add cost to your project.

Make sure your property doesn’t come under the flood zone. The issue with coastal properties is most of them fall into flood zones. Building homes close to the body of water is a large part of the allure of coastal living. However, you need to know how this may affect the cost of your building project. To be specific, building in a V Zone is the most expensive. V Zones are typically oceanfront, or near to oceanfront, properties.  A zoned properties carry some of the same code requirements, but will not cost as much as a V Zone.

Many coastal communities avoid the creation of “corridors of darkness” caused by an excessive number of tall structures. The height restrictions will have a huge impact on the design that you choose for your property.  Just be sure to do the calculations before you purchase your plan.

When choosing a design, please be careful. For example, don’t build a mountain chalet if you are moving to an island. Build a home that looks just right on your lot. There are dozens of coastal architectural options to choose from, so pick something with style.

Choosing an experienced builder is an important factor while you plan your coastal home. Margins are higher for homes in “specialty” categories and you’ll find that even the small builders may decide to give the coast a go. Don’t do that! Choosing a builder who has experience in your coastal market offers you a risk-free atmosphere and living.

You may or may not import the most expensive tile from Italy or buy absolute top-of-the-line windows. this is your choice based on budget.  But avoid compromising the quality of materials that are exposed to the elements. This would include the roofing material, the quality of the window you choose, the grade of paint, the decking material and the type of ceiling fans you install. If you try to get by with lesser materials, you’ll lose the saving you realized by having to replace them inside of less than 3 years.

Eliminating the “frilly” trim-work shown on your set of plans is one other thing you should note. Save money and time by simplifying the design for the fascia boards, balustrades, gable trusses, cornice work, under-eave brace supports, eyebrow dormers, etc. Compromises are OK, but be careful not to eliminate too much. Often, it could be this that gives the design its coastal look and feel.

An outdoor kitchen is always good when you live near the coast. One of the joys of living on the coast (lake, ocean or river) is being outside. Make it a point to build it easy and affordable too.  Why not expand your living space to include the great outdoors?

We have built many coastal flats and apartments in Kochi for the NRIs. With the light of knowledge, we always suggest considering all these factors while building your coastal home!

Last but not least, beautify your property with landscaping.  Go green and enjoy a peaceful and green atmosphere.  Adding landscaping, whether it’s formal or casual in design, will make your house instantly feel like a home with love!