This is Christina’s house in Jakarta. We did some modifications and general fixing up so we could put it on the market. I was going to do what work I was capable of, but it made no sense because labor is so inexpensive here. We got to guys to work for 150,000 IDR each per day. 300,000 IDR is $22.50 and they worked 8 hrs each: 7:30A to 4:30P with 1 hr. for lunch.
The men worked fast and knew what they were doing, especially with cement. It’s a good because the construction here is different—it’s not framed but brick and mortar covered with cement. The finished cement is as smooth as any drywall. The wood for construction here is hardwood. It’s not the balsa-like stuff at home depot.
We replaced 2 doors and frames, and put in another. Twin windows were replaced in the master bedroom—all were Kamper (Champhor), one of the 4,000 species of hardwood found here. The window frame alone weighed at least 100lbs. To install, they knock a hole in the cement covered brick wall and set the window on the bottom of the hole and level it with shims. They leave about 1 or 2″ around the sides and top. After cementing around the frame, they hung the windows with hinges on top and then put a finish on the frame. The double hardwood windows w/frame was $150. The doors were $75 each.
The water system is simple and clever. A water pump keeps a huge tank on the top of the house filled with maybe 100 gallons of water. Gravity does the rest. There is no hot water in most houses here but it isn’t necessary. The sun keeps the water tank warm