Extending your home? 5 Key Considerations

Extending your home? 5 key considerations

Building an extension is a great way to add both space and value to your home, and can often be a preferred option to moving. You could save time and money, plus you might be fond of your home and not want to leave, but before you start the process there are some key things to consider.

1. Do you need planning permission? Most of the time for a single storey extension the answer will be no, but it is always best to check prior to spending any money. You’ll also want to brush up any other regulations before you start building. Get in touch with your local planning officer or ask your builders / architect if you’re unsure. You may be under tighter regulations if your home is a listed building or in a conservation area. Make sure you’ve done your homework.

2. Why are you extending the property, and will you need even more space soon after? You don’t want to extend the property for a small home office and then realise you want additional living space or want an extra bedroom for a new arrival. Make sure you’ve carefully thought about the next few years and factored them into any changes you’re going to make

3. Where is the extension going to go? Are you planning on putting the extension on the side, front or back of the house? You’ll need to factor in other things here like accessing the rest of the property and exposure to natural light. A great way to add light is to use french or patio doors as they usually feature a lot more glass than a standard door. Companies like Oakwood Doors have a great range available, and you can usually choose your finish.

4. How long will it take? Will it affect your neighbours? Extensions take time, require builders and usually make a fair amount of noise. You’re going to need to consider the disruption to your own home and to your neighbours. The best thing to do is give them a courtesy knock beforehand and discuss your plans with them. You don’t want to upset them during the process, and if they know of the works they should be able to plan around them.

5. Who is going to do the work? Unless you’re a professional builder this probably isn’t something you can do yourself. You’re going to want to get the professionals in, and probably right from the start. An architect or builder will be able to offer experience and a professional service. This is an additional cost, but one worth forking out for. Make sure you’ve really done your research on any company before you start using them, and even ask neighbouring properties who did their work for them, it’s much better to be referred by someone who has already been through the process.

Aline Chahine
Aline is an international licensed architect currently practicing in Canada, she is the reason you are reading this right now, Aline founded the platform back in 2008 shaping the very foundation of Architecture Lab, her exemplary content curation process that defines the online magazine today.

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