Project Checklist

A comprehensive checklist for planning your am‑cor Project

It's important to know the steps involved in constructing your project. The following checklists will help you manage construction of your am-cor Kit, from start to finish.

Detail Checklist

This is a detailed step-by-step version of the Project Checklist. We can help at each stage of your project; please Link - contact us with questions/comments.

  1. Basic Project Planning Sequence
    • Determine your Needs
      • Write a list of priorities, a sample might be:
        1. Disaster resistance: Hurricane, earthquake, tornado, flood, and fire resistance
        2. Size of family, who will be living in the dwelling
        3. Privacy issues: where are separations made, Mother-in-Law suite, rental unit, teenager or college room, etc.
        4. Long term investment strategy: How long will you keep the house? How much can you afford to heat/cool & maintain the structure?
      • Devise a construction program based on needs
        1. Number of rooms and types of rooms
          • Bedrooms
          • Baths
          • Closets
          • Living room / kitchen / family (separate or together)
          • Dining (separate or open to kitchen)
        2. Overall size of house
          • long term living & budget plans
          • future expansion (the am-cor System makes outwards/upwards expansion easy!)
      • House type based on size
        • Single or double story
        • Basement
        • Live-in attic / loft
        • Porches, verandas, garages
      • Choose your land, or where to build on your land
        • Land restrictions
          • Setbacks
          • Local laws / ordinances
          • Covenants (HOA restrictions on materials, style, or size)
        • Land features & values
          • Sloped site
          • Wooded areas
          • Views
          • Solar aperture
          • Access
          • Utility locations
      • Based on these needs:
        • Choose a standard Kit
        • Customize:
          • one of our standard plans
          • a plan based on your sketches
          • a plan from your architect / designer
    • Construction Budget
      • How big is your construction investment?
        • Divide your budget by the area of your sketch or standard plan to obtain a unit construction rate
        • Example:
          • Your budget = US $90,000
          • Your Kit = 1000 sq.ft.
          • $90,000 / 1000 sq.ft. = $90/sq.ft.
        • Compare this rate with standard construction cost in your region
          • “Hit the ground”, and contact some local builders / contractors
          • Need a baseline figure? We can help!
        • Consult the am-cor Kit QuickBudget for comparison
      • DIY sweat equity will lower out of pocket expenses
        • How much are you capable of doing?
        • How much do you have time to do?
        • How much are you willing to learn?
      • If you plan to manage your own construction:
        • Project management can be a full time job
          • Will you be able to make time?
          • Will you have help?
          • Can you find a source of professional advice?
        • What will subcontractors cost?
          • Show them your sketch or standard plan to get estimates
          • Always get multiple estimates!
          • We can estimate on shell construction, if you’re in the continental USA/CA
        • Always allow for contingencies & unforeseen circumstances
    • Construction Schedule
      • Gantt charts
        • On a computer or written by hand
        • A really, really good idea!
      • When do you want to start construction?
      • What is your goal completion date?
      • How much time will you allow for construction?
  2. Order your am-cor Kit
    1. Choose your a Kit
      1. Contact am-cor inc. and speak to an am-cor Kit representative
        1. Discuss your plans and needs
        2. Develop your budget & schedule
        3. Standard Kit or Custom?
        4. Easy design changes
          1. external style
          2. layout
          3. doors / windows, etc.
      2. Site plan & site planning assistance
        1. Ask about our Design Options (see below)
    2. Kit Options
      1. Contact us to discuss the best for your project
      2. Renewable Energy Options
        1. Solar Electric/Photovoltaic Panels
        2. Solar Hot Water Panels
        3. Solar Radiant Floor Heating
      3. Insulation Options
        1. Thermal break material
        2. Insulation board
        3. Spray Foam Kits
      4. Opening Options
        1. Fiberglass low-e doors and windows
        2. Hurricane resistant glass
        3. Be sure to discuss the type & size of doors and windows you plan to use with your am-cor Kit representative
      5. Design Options
        1. Site planning & site design
        2. Building design
          1. from scratch
          2. modification of existing designs
        3. Architectural & engineering services
        4. Project Management
      6. Assembly Options
        1. am-cor Kit assembly estimate (depends on project size/location)
        2. You can use this to help with your budgeting or builder negotiation
    3. Kit Purchase
      1. Overview
        1. The Fee Schedule below is applicable for the majority of cases
        2. If your project has special considerations or is large (multiple buildings, apartment complexes, etc.), contact us to work out the best schedule for you
      2. Kit Price
        1. Kit Price Total = Base Kit + Kit Options
      3. Schedule of Fees
        1. Draw #1
          1. 15% deposit of Kit Price
          2. Architectural & Engineering drawings for your Building Permit
          3. Mobilization Fee
          4. Locks in steel & other material prices
        2. Draw #2
          1. 85% balance of Kit Price
          2. am-cor Kit manufacture
          3. am-cor Field Manual
        3. Shipping
          1. Please contact us for an estimate of shipping to your site
          2. We arrange shipping as a courtesy to our clients, but we are not responsible for shipping! 
  3. Planning
    1. Project Planning
      1. vital to success for both DIY & contracted projects
      2. See Project Planning details under “Preparation to Build” below
    2. Use the am-cor QuickBudget as a starting point
    3. Place a value on each portion of construction:
      1. Site preparation
      2. Foundations
      3. am-cor Kit purchase
      4. am-cor Kit delivery
      5. am-cor Kit assembly
      6. Openings (Doors & Windows)
      7. Dry-in (exterior finishes & roofing)
      8. Insulation
      9. Services (plumbing, electrical, heating & ventilating)
      10. Interiors (drywall, trim, finish floor, cabinets & fittings)
    4. Check if each of these values is reasonable and in-line with costs in your area
      1. Always get multiple estimates
      2. We can help you determine competitive rates
    5. Probable Cost
      1. Create an estimate for the total value of your project
      2. Be sure to add for overheads:
        1. Taxes / fees during construction
        2. Cost of loan
        3. Legal and professional fees
        4. Permit application fees
      3. This Probable Cost will act as a valuable budget guide, and as justification for the loan amount if you plan to seek external financing
    6. Schedule each phase of your project
      1. So you have a monetary picture of your expense amounts, and when they will occur
      2. Gantt charts recommended!
  4. Scheduling
    1. Preparation = $$$
      1. Adjust both schedule and budget if there are unforeseen circumstances
      2. Be prepared for & flexible to necessary changes
      3. Otherwise resist changing the plan or other items unless really necessary
      4. Changes during construction are the primary cause of cost overruns
      5. Make sure you write contracts for all labor tasks as much as possible
      6. Avoid hourly contracts unless the subcontractor gives you a written time estimate
      7. Remember: if you change the the program (design, tasks, etc.) during construction, you are inviting a cost increase in both material and labor
    2. Keep Records
      1. Regularly update a budget spreadsheet for your Project
      2. Keep records of all meetings with laborers and subcontractors
      3. Keep all waybills for material deliveries
      4. Take photos!
  5. Requirements
    1. Inspections
      1. In most areas of the USA & CA, the local building department will inspect your job at certain junctures
        1. Obtain their inspection schedule and inform them when you are ready for inspection of each building stage
        2. Find out what they will want to see on site during inspection
        3. Before moving into your new home, you will need to obtain a Certificate of Occupancy from the local authority; get the list of completion items they check for
        4. Maintain a good relationship with inspectors by being ready for each inspection, keeping the site clean, having the plans on hand, and showing good workmanship
    2. Insurances
      1. Obtain and keep current: Owner-Builder insurance for liability and to protect against loss or damage
    3. Construction
      1. Site security
      2. Electricity/water on site
      3. Adequate site access for delivery vehicles
        1. gravel or paved road
        2. turn around space for large trucks
        3. no tight corners
      4. Sanitary facilities for workers

Summary Checklist

This is a summarized version of the Project Checklist, showing the most important items. See below for a detailed, step-by-step listing.

  1. Get some land
    • Buy it
    • Survey it
    • Get approvals (zoning, health, etc.)
  2. Get your Kit
  3. Prepare your site
    • Foundations & Grading
  4. Assemble your Kit
    • Assemble am-cor Kit: wall, floor, & roof panels
    • Apply amcorite Structural Stucco
  5. Finish out kit
    1. Exterior
      • Roofing
      • Finish coat
    2. Interior
      • Services
      • Finishes
  6. Move in!
    • Occupancy permit

Ready to begin?

Ready for your am-cor Project? Contact us and we'll get started!