In recent years people have chosen to extend their home in order to create more space, rather than to move. This is partly due to the difficulty many homeowners have faced when applying for a mortgage and also the cost of moving compared to carrying out building work.
However, before you decide that extending your home is right for you and your family it’s worth considering the following:
Reason for extending your home
Are you looking for more room in which to spend time as a family? You could be looking for more downstairs space such as a larger kitchen or an extra sitting room, or even a child’s playroom. Alternatively, it could be that you need another bedroom or home office. Be clear in your mind what you need the extra space for, and how your home would best work for you and your family.
If cost is the main reason that you are choosing to extend rather than to move, your available budget is possibly the most important consideration. You need to know exactly what your budget is, and what you will get for your money.
Get several quotes from builders, as they will also be able to give you ideas on what is achievable within your budget. Make sure you factor in any planning fees, architect fees, VAT and also a contingency amount should you come across any unexpected expenses.
It could take a long time to get planning permission, find the right builder and then ensure that they have availability and the time to carry out the work. Think about how quickly you need the additional space, for example if you are expecting another child you will need to have the work completed before your child arrives. You will also need to factor in family events such as holidays, Christmas and other occasions where you will need full use of your home. The key is to plan ahead as far as possible.
Understand the planning rules
You may need planning permission for certain work carried out on your home such as an extension or loft conversion, so check the local planning regulations and requirements before deciding whether you should proceed with the building work. Your local council or a trustworthy building company will be able to help you.
Do you live in a listed building?
If you live in a listed building or within a conservation area, there could be controls that will limit any building works or alterations that you can carry out. Check with your local council or talk to your architect, as they will be able to help you.
Will you need an architect?
Larger home improvement works require the services of an expert who understands in-depth the impact of any alternations to your property. An architect will be able to draw up plans and will know whether you also need a structural engineer.
Will you disrupt other homes in the area?
You will need to find out if any building works will impact the homes next to your or any adjoining buildings. Your plans may impact on both their property and the lives of your neighbours whilst any building work is carried out. Keep your neighbours informed and ask them if they have any objections.
Find a good builder
Most large-scale building projects require a qualified and experienced builder. Try and get recommendations from friends, family or online forums. Make sure they have the relevant experience and if possible try and get a look first-hand at their previous work.
Contact Archway Plumbing today if you would like advice on a building project that you are considering undertaking for your home.