Help and Advice
Choosing to extend your home is not a decision to be taken lightly. The added value of extra space can be huge but, if you go for the wrong sort of extension, you could find that it actually detracts from the value of your property. Here are our top five things to think about when choosing to extend your home. Take these into consideration and we think you’ll be well on your way to having the home extension of your dreams.
1. Why do you want an extension?
If you are simply looking to create additional living space then the question you should be asking yourself is can I afford an extension? However if you’re looking to sell your house, then you’ll need to do a bit of homework. First you’ll need to find out the current value of your home, and then you’ll need to get an estimated value of what your home will be worth once the extension is complete. If the added value is greater than the cost of building the extension then it’s full steam ahead. If you are looking to extend your home prior to selling it, you may also find that gaining the planning permission for an extension, without actually completing any building work, is enough to add some value to your home.
2. Where do you want to extend?
Ground floor extensions are much easier to carry out than first floor extensions, for obvious reasons. If you think that a first floor extension is the best way to increase space or add value to your home, you may find that it is more economical in the long run to extend at the ground floor level as well. This will add even more space to your property and help keep your home in proportion to its original design.
3. What rooms do you want your extension to provide?
Whether you are extending the ground or first (or indeed second!) floor of your house, you need to know what this extra space will be used for. If you are pretty sure that you’re not going to be selling your home in the future, then the world is your oyster (planning permission aside). If, however, you think at some point you are likely to want to move house, a little more thought might be needed as to what your extension is used for. If you choose to extend on the ground floor, avoiding adding an extra bathroom downstairs could be advisable. These can sometimes add little value to your property. You may find that using your extension to make a larger, more open plan kitchen and dining room does more to make your home marketable.
4. Who do you want to construct your extension?
Finding the right builder to construct your extension is obviously important. You’ll want to know that your home is in safe hands, and that if any problems should arise in the future, you can call on the builder for help. Take a look at the local building companies in your area and compare the prices and services they offer. Make sure you’ve given yourself enough time to make an informed decision and to get sufficient planning permission from your local authority if you need it.
5. How much can you afford to spend your home extension?
As ever, perhaps the strongest influence on what type of extension you have will be your budget. It is important to know how much money you are able to spend on your extension before making any other decisions. Once you know how much you can spend, you can decide where to go from there. It is also important to ensure you have a contingency fund, so if problems do arise, you are not left high dry.
And there you have it, our top five things to consider when extending your home.