You Buy the Building Materials!


I have read your book from cover to cover and most of your website. I am
still somewhat confused about purchasing supplies.

Your book suggests that the owner-builder should purchase most supplies with the exception of plumbing. Another book on this topic says that the electrician should purchase his own material.

Do you have any general rules on this topic? I
would think that a subcontractor needs to make a certain profit per time
period of labor and would charge more for labor if he doesn't get any markup
on material.

The other problem would be a sub complaining about
"substandard" material and claim that problems are caused by the material
rather than the labor or want more money because of an efficiency problem
with using the owner-builder supplied material. Thanks for any sage advice.


Hey Kerry,

Reread page 60, “Electrical Bid, HVAC, & page 64; chap 7, or check my page “Building Material Suppliers” on where you'll see a list of what I suggest you buy.

What's a subcontractor going to complain about; bad concrete, brick, windows, etc., just because he didn't buy them?

When you check a subcontractor’s references his "it's not my fault, I didn’t buy that” trait should "pop up" and you can find someone else.

Plumbing, HVAC, Electrical materials definitely should be supplied by subcontractor if for no other reason it’s the only way you will get warranty work done.

Thanks for your interest and for writing.