Two Story Playhouse With Balcony

Two computer engineers with no construction experience use "Online Resources" to create a two story playhouse structure.

This was in year 2012, and technology over the last 20+ years has enabled all of us to do amazing things, learn new traits, and simply speed up everything we do around each other.

Construction projects have also evolved around technology growth. More and more individuals are leaving construction industry to become computer specialists, and software engineers. Completion of this project proved the grounds that computer engineers with no construction experience can use the technologies like search, online videos, and white papers to research, learn, and create materialistic objects, and build a playhouse as pictured above.

My name is Navneet Grewal, and I have been a computer engineer for the last 14 years working on several projects for State of California. I have grown into this technology career as Internet was starting to reach every household back in 1997. I have a Bachelors of Science in Information Technology, and a Masters in Business Administration.

This project was a collaboration between myself and Albert Cisneros. Albert has been an awesome co-worker, family friend, and most importantly, supporter of my crazy ideas for the last 7 years. Albert and I have full time jobs, so this construction project was limited to after work hours between 4pm and 8pm. Both of us put in full days on weekends. 

Overall objective of this project was to prove that a couple of computer geeks can learn construction, and most importantly create a structure without help of any contractors, and still meet city's construction requirements. And, YES we did it.

As requested, here is the parts list in order they were needed in the project.

1. Concrete blocks x 20
2. Treated Lumber (2x4x12) x 5
3. Treated Lumber (2x4x8) x 4
4. Plywood for base (4x8) x 3
5. Lumber (2x4x8) for first floor walls – x 100
6. Lumber (2x4x12) for first floor ceiling – x 2
7. Lumber (2x4x8) for first floor ceiling – x 11
8. Plywood for second story floor (4x8) x 3
9. Lumber (2x4x8) for second floor walls – x 60
10. Waterproofing roll sheet for porch – x 1
11. Aluminum  tape roll to keep sheet together – x 1
12. Plywood for walls, first floor (4x8) – x 11
13. Redwood for porch posts (4x4x8)  - x 3
14. Lumber for above posts ceiling base (2x4x8) – x 6
15. Metal (T) brace to keep posts together with ceiling base – x 6
16. Metal brace for bottom of each porch post – x 3
17. Roof center gable (2x6x8) – x 1
18. Lumber for roof (Center part) (2x4x8) – x 6
19. Metal braces to hold roof onto the second floor roof line – x 16
20. Lumber for left & right side roof (2x4x8) – x 10
21. Lumber for bird blocks (2x4x8) – x 6
22. Plywood for second floor walls (4x8) -  x 9
23. Plywood for roof (4x8) – x 8
24. Redwood Lumber for ladder – (2x4x8) – x 5
25. 30 pounds of 2-in nails for most of the work / lumber work.
26. 10 pounds of exterior wood screws for all metal braces.
27. Facia boards for below roof line (1x6x8) – x 6
28. 60 minute paper roll – x 2
29. 2x2 Windows – x 6
30. Skylight
31. Window seal tape roll for six windows – x 1
32. Weather seal tape for paper 60 minute paper joints – x1
33. Roof water seal paper roll – x 1
34. Roof shingles, boxes – x 12
35. Roof shingles, caps boxes – x 2
36. Metal sheet for water drip by roof shingles – x 50 feet
37. Siding – x 20
38. Door frames – x 2
39. Solid wood doors – x 2
40. Door knobs, lock – x 2
41. Vinyl roll for floors – enough for at least 200 sqft.
42. “L-shape” metal piece to seal vinyl to first floor wall – x 20 ft.
43. Window trim boards (1 x 3 x 8) – x 6
44. House trim boards (1 x 3 x 8 ) – x 30
45. Lumber for porch railing (1 x 3 x 8 )- x 5
46. Metal door jamb for bottom of the doors x 2
47. Footboards (1 x 3 x 8) for exterior above vinyl & walls – 4
48. Front door deck lumber (2x4x8) – x 8
49. Posts for miniature fence pressure treated (4x4x8) cut in half – 4
50. Concrete 80lb bags for posts – x 4
51. Fence boards cut in half – x 50
52. Paint accessories like brushes, rollers, towels, paint tape, etc.
53. 5 gallons of tan paint
54. 2 gallons of white paint



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    14 Discussions


    Reply 1 year ago

    Oops... I meant ask if there are if you could email me a copy. Thanks!


    2 years ago

    This is an awesome house to build, but for me my yards not that big, and it basically is an actual house, just need to add plumbing.


    3 years ago on Introduction

    Did you ever get a chance to make the detailed instructions and diagrams? I would love to build this for my daughter.


    Great job! Could you add some interior shots of your playhouse? I'd love to see how you finished it and how the kids are using it. I myself have built several indoor playhouses and fantasy loft beds in the past for my business. You did a fantastic job. Love the tank too from the Halloween project.

    2 replies

    We decided to keep the interior all natural so far, and it is not finished from inside at this point. There is no insulation or sheet-rock. Maybe if I save up some money, then might be able to finish the interior, but for now enjoy the pictures.


    Unfinished is just fine. Looks like the kids will have fun. The ones I build are only painted a solid color on the interior. No frills inside.

    I have to say I'm more interested in your build for myself. Looks like the right overall approach to build myself a nice little workshop away from the house.


    4 years ago on Introduction

    This is simply AWESOME, and i mean it. I love the design but, and it is a big but. This is not really an instructable. This is what I call a showoffable. Please add more instructions so that other geeks may do the same. I would love to build this but cannot from what you have here. Cite your sources and give some written detail about what you did and costs would be nice. I would really like to some some inside photos also and video walk through. Also where is the steps to get through to the top. I cannot vote for thsi to be a winner right now without more but I will if there is.

    2 replies

    Reply 4 years ago on Introduction

    I have added itemized list of materials to purchase as you request. I will be adding additional step by step diagrams & instructions on wood cuts, sizes, etc in the coming few weeks. - I appreciate your honest feedback. Thanks


    Reply 4 years ago on Introduction

    Thank you for the updated info, and as promised you have my vote. Can't wait to see further updates in the future. I know making an instuctable is not easy, especially after all the work is done. So thank you for your hard work.