When we bought property in Honduras, my husband (Doug) and I focused on undeveloped property for two reasons: cost and opportunity to build what we want. But being part-timers means that we’re taking our sweet time to build, so changes are incremental.
Less than half of our 1.75-acre property is cleared of brush. We kept many native trees, and have added even more: acacia, avocado, cedro, coconut, lime, mahogany and palm. We’ve also planted croton, ginger and hibiscus. The rest of the property is full of trees and brush, but we’re leaving it as is for now. Once cleared, you’ve got to work to keep it cleared—not an easy task when you’re out of the country much of the time.
The foundation for our house is nearly done. With 30 9-foot cement posts, it’s taken a group effort to complete. Then we can start framing the house. During much of the construction, we’ll use our makeshift dock—just some boards over stick posts. It’s strong enough to walk on and carry sacks of cement or piles of wood. But eventually, we’ll need to have a beefier dock. It’s essentially our driveway because no roads lead to our house and most islanders travel by boat.
We’re not doing this all ourselves. Out main builder is a friend who lives in a nearby town, and has constructed his own house as well as the home of a couple of friends—where we stay when we’re on the island. Having someone you trust on the project is not only helpful, but also necessary. An amazing number of things can go wrong, especially if you’re not there paying attention to every little step.