Be trendy. Buy a warehouse, convert part of it into residential accommodation and rent out the rest. That way you get a roof over your head and income. Many businesses like the security of having someone living on the property.
Buy the shell and finish the interior yourself on a pay as you go basis. This means you avoid having to pay interest on money you didn’t have when the house was built.
If building your own home or renovating, why not buy an old barn or building for demolition? Buy the whole building for a song, the some of the materials on your own house, and sell what you can’t use. (Be aware that some building work must be done – or at least supervised – by a registered builder.)
If buying a section why not buy in the country? Sometimes 10 acres costs less than a ¼ acre in town. It also gives you the freedom to grow your own food and run livestock. Look particular for properties with standing timber that may be milled for building materials. A reader writes that they built a house from trees on their property, and saved about 2/3rds the normal price.
Live in a garage for a while. With very little modification a two-car garage makes a cozy little bungalow at negligible cost. And where you are able to build the house (without borrowing) you will have a sleep-out for the kids or guests.
Why not buy an existing home for removal and resite it onto a section? Sometimes you can buy old houses for a steal, but do carefully check out the relocation costs, but beware – sometimes this costs as much as the house itself and these types of projects have lots of hidden costs lurking in nooks and crannies (like in the ceiling and behind the cladding).
– Oily Rag Ed’