Top Tips For Planning A Home Extension
October 13, 2022

There are several reasons to undergo a house extension. It could be a new baby, changing a floorplan, or extra storage. Where is the best place to start? What should you avoid, and what are the legal requirements? Don’t worry. We’re here to help. I’m going to share some tips on what to consider when it comes to a home extension.

Will My Extension Add Value To My Home?

The first thing to consider is the reason for a home extension. If you are planning a home extension built to add value to your property, for the extension to make economic sense, you need to be confident that the project cost will not exceed the final value. Although many think making a home bigger instantly adds value, this is not always the case. Local estate agents and property websites can be a helpful guide in assessing whether the property value will increase with the addition of a home extension.

How Much Will My Home Extension Cost?

There is no one-word answer for this question as every extension is different, so set yourself a realistic budget. Going into a house extension without having a budget in mind can be reckless and result in unnecessary overspending. The construction industry is facing many challenges, with material shortages being one of the biggest. Prices for materials have also risen, and currently, there is no sign of this changing, so be sure to consider this when setting your budget. It is always essential to think about having a backup contingency fund for items that can not be seen until works start.

What About A Timescale?

As well as a realistic budget, it is best to factor in extended timescales. Due to a backlog and surge in demand, the industry is facing increasing delays, so be sure to stay in regular contact with your architect, builders, and anyone else involved in the project.

Do I Have To Manage My Home Extension?

You have the vision in your mind. You know exactly where you want everything to be, from the windows down to the very last plant pot. However, building a home extension is more complex than building a cube out of lego. Every inch has to be carefully planned and exact to comply with regulations, safety and structural integrity. Suppose you choose not to manage your project yourself. In that case, you can employ an architect or a building company to take charge of your extension, or if you want to be partially involved, you can split the project management with either of the above or someone else.

What About The Legal Stuff?

With any kind of substantial home improvement, you must get Building Regulations approval. Having your extension brought to a halt halfway through completion while the necessary checks are completed can be frustrating and costly so being organised is vital. Obtaining early approval will prevent delays and drawbacks in the long run and ensure your project runs as smoothly as possible.

Does It Matter About The Foundations?

Yes. The foundations of a house are the load-bearing portion of the structure. Although extending over a single storey portion of the house seems simple, the structure may not be able to support the additional load. Ensuring these structures stay secure and safe is vital to the property and your safety. Checking your existing foundations prior to getting a structural engineer involved would be advised, your builder should be more than happy to dig trial holes for you, as if they are not substantial enough underpinning can be expensive.

Does An Extension Always Have To Be Costly?

Not necessarily. There are different methods of construction that may suit your budget and final result better than others, you have traditional builds formed with brick & blockwork which tends to be the cheapest material wise, you also have timber frame buildings which can be faster but due to material costs can come in similar to brick & blockwork. New systems like ICF are becoming more common and give great U values and provides a passive house. Your builder can advise on the best method for your build.

A square or rectangle-shaped extension with a flat roof can also help keep costs down as the layout is more simplistic than angled designs requiring more glass and complicated roof structures.

With a little planning and the correct team of experts to manage the build, your dream house extension can become a reality. Our team at Early Birds can help you plan the renovations for this project. We have years of experience in providing excellent renovation services to residential clients in Kent. Call now on 01233 333 280 to speak to one of our dream home team or visit our website to discuss your new home extension in more detail.