In Summary
  • Some dreams outlive others because of their potential to change our lives.
  • One of those dreams is owning a home. If you are looking for inspiration, this plan gives you ideas and practical tips to follow in order to turn your dream into a reality.

Most of us dream of building the ultimate house when we hit it big. The reality however, is that if we wait for this time to begin, we will live for the rest of our lives in that dream or worse, give up.
Simon Peter Kazibwe, an architect, says the surest way to build your dream home is to start now. “Contact an architect and put your dream on paper. Once you have committed yourself to the plan, you will be motivated to save or find ingenuous ways of raising the money you need to turn your dream into a reality,” Kazibwe tips.

He describes this five bedroom house as one of his favourite dream homes preferred by the newly rich, usually men in their early to late 40s. “These are men who get that one incredible deal that changes their fortunes and want to invest the money into something tangible as they wait for the next big deal,” says Kazibwe.
This double storied house with a swimming pool fits comfortably on a 150x200 metre plot and is budgeted at Shs250m outside Kampala and Shs300m while using ordinary materials.

Special features
The living quarters are all on the first floor while the second floor is reserved for the bedrooms. The house has three distinct, spacious living rooms, two inside and one on the outside. It has two indoor kitchens and a barbecue area on the patio. There is also a games room, an exercise room and a home office that can be accessed from the outside. To complete the whole affluent feel at the back of the house is an ordinary-sized swimming pool.

Getting started
“Before committing to a plan, have a particular budget in your mind. This will assist experts to come up with a design that will turn your dream into a reality. Remember your budget is what experts will use to make you a design. So, be practical and honest with yourself and your team about what your budget is,” Kazibwe advises.

This house offers the perfect solution to a dream home and allows you to make a tangible investment. COURTSEY PHOTO

To be on the safe side, Ken Amunsimiire, a member of the architect community, recommends engaging a quantity surveyor to get the costs accurately. “A smaller budget can lead to failure to complete the project, which can cause emotional distress. A bigger budget on the other hand may seem too unattainable and thus discouraging. A quantity surveyor will not only give accurate costs but will advise on whether to scale down on size or change materials,” Amunsimiire says.

Follow procedure
Amunsimiire further advises the homeowner to go through the right channels. “You are building a dream home to last for generations. You need to make sure that nothing happens to undo your grand investment. So, get your plan approved by local statutory authorities before construction begins,” cautions Amunsimiire.
You will also need to get certified plumbing and electrical experts to provide approved plans because according to Amunsimiire, these two usually present challenges when done poorly.

Lastly, he cautions against skimping on the planning process. This is the only chance the homeowner has to make any changes in floor plans, materials and design. “Once building starts, changes become expensive. “Once building decisions are made, they are difficult to undo. So, take your time when planning the house, and avoid jumping into the building stage before you are ready.”

How to save up
Have a budget. Any financial goals begin and end with your monthly family budget. It’s important to be both honest and realistic about your spending habits and then stick with your fixed plan as much as possible.
Don’t withdraw savings. The simplest way to avoid this is to create a dedicated bank account just for your housing fund, and then quarantine it from any spending.

Plan courtesy of Simon Peter Kazibwe, an architect with Royal Architects and Engineers.