I have a lot of people ask me…
“How much does a cob home cost?”
“I heard cob homes are really cheap to build. How much does it cost per square foot?”
These are good questions to ask, but they’re very broad and can’t really be answered in a general sense.
The cost of a cob home, just like any type of home, will depend on a whole list of variables.
But I want to focus in on one specific area here…
The notion that cob homes are “dirt cheap” and don’t cost much to build.
Firstly, there are some cob homes that would fall under this category of “dirt cheap”.
But they are either “tiny homes”, usually between 120-200 square feet interior…
Or these “cheap” cob homes are of low standard (in most people’s eyes) and would not really be suitable to the majority of people’s needs and comfort levels.
I’m not here to crush your dreams.
But I want to help set this straight.
Because I’m seeing this misleading message all too often that you can build a cob home for next to nothing, and it will be like your fantasy dwelling in paradise.
Not true. Unfortunately!
I actually think the Natural Building movement is doing a disservice to itself by promoting cob and other natural building methods as extremely low cost.
They can be very low cost in certain circumstances, but that should not be the main promotion point for a natural home.
A home is a home. No matter what its made out of it is going to cost you money.
Your home is a huge life investment.
It’s a place where you live and defines much about your life, health, and well-being.
I personally don’t recommend people to skimp on investing in their home.
On the other hand, I recommend putting as much thought, effort, and finances into the design and building of your home as you’re capable of.
I want to see cob and earthen building materials go to the mainstream.
And if cob and earthen homes really were “dirt cheap” I would promote them that way as well.
But they’re not, and I want people to know the reality.
One more thought I want to note…
The raw materials for cob are cheap: soil, aggregate, straw, and water.
But you also need to factor in the huge amount of labor to process these materials into cob or whatever earthen material you’re using.
And the cob walls are only one portion of the whole building.
There are a myriad of other components to a home that will still cost you money.
So, let’s understand the cost reality, and lets build some amazing cob homes to the best of our abilities!