Need cheap or free construction materials? Go to a demolished housing development.

By Xin Lu on 7 May 2009 (Updated 18 August 2011) 4 comments
Photo: Wrecking Ball

Amidst the financial crisis, many home builders around the country have run out of financing.  Last week a bank decided to completely level 16 completed and partially built homes in Victorville, California because the builder defaulted on the project.  While this is unfortunate, some bargain hunters were able to pick up some extremely cheap construction materials and home fixtures.

In the LA Times report about the Victorville demolition, the bank sent a representative to keep away the vandals and sell things to bargain hunters.   Some passerbys were were able to salvage a granite counter for $40 and dual-pane windows for $20 a piece from the model homes.  Another person was able to score a trailer full of 2-by-4s for $40.  These materials and fixtures are supposed to be used for personal projects only, but they are definitely excellent deals considering that everything is practically brand new.

Another demolition of townhomes is scheduled in eastern Murrieta in California on May 15th and there is probably something there that is worth saving.     These demolitions seem like a complete waste of time and effort, but it is understandable that  lenders and developers are cutting their losses on homes that may not even sell when completed

If you live in an area with an overabundance of housing developments,  then you should definitely keep an eye open for these demolitions if you are thinking of doing some home improvement.  There may just be a nice designer counter and sink that you can get for $20.
 

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K

Actually, an even BETTER place to get cheap construction materials is Habitat for Humanity's Restore. It's all the donated construction materials they don't use on their homes, plus more! All of your money goes to building more Habitat Homes, and everything there is dirt cheap. Here's a link to their US locations: http://www.habitat.org/cd/env/restore.aspx

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wildgift

It seems so wrong, that we're fighting wars in Iraq and Afghanistan over oil, and our homeless population is growing, and now these developers demolish new homes.

Guest's picture
C2

Wow...I can't believe Murrieta is actually being talked about! :) Yeah, I live there and I've seen those unfinished townhomes. It's not many, but it looks so depressing. There are finished, occupied homes around it and I can't imagine being one of those who have to look out their window and see that stuff. Everything looks so aged, even the chain link fence that's supposed to keep people out. Honestly, I'm surprised that the structures are still standing. I'm sure someone could probably set fire to them, and no one would really care. I mean, obviously someone would, but I'm just saying. That's sad.

Guest's picture

Harsh! Good tips though, thanks for the blog!