Side Extensions: Do They Add Value to your Home?

Side Extensions: Do They Add Value to your Home?


When seeking to increase the value of your house, adding an extension is the most common idea that pops in most people’s minds. But, does it really add value to your home? Well, while in most cases, the answer might be a definite yes, there are various other factors that you must consider before you proceed with the idea.

Sure, a side extension means increased square footage of your property, which will undoubtedly raise its value. But, is the rise in value worthwhile? Before you get down to adding that extension, here are crucial factors you must think of:


1.   The Cost of the Project

What is your budget, and how much does the whole project cost? For any extension project to make economic sense, the value added to the property must be higher than the cost of doing the project. This way, even if you want to sell the house immediately, you will still make some considerable profit.

That’s why it’s crucial to first create a budget for the project and have a rough idea of your house extension cost. And, although most people are adamant on the need to create a budget, it’s crucial as it assists you to stick to your plans and help you determine if you can afford to pay for the project.

Although it might be difficult sometimes to assess the value brought by the extension against the cost, finding out how much properties with similar extensions near you cost, may give you an estimate. If the extension adds more value to the house than what it costs to build, then it means that the project is worthwhile.


2. Do you Need Planning Permission?

In some instances, planning permission is necessary for creating a house extension, while in other cases, it’s not. For example, if you want to add 8 meters of a detached, single-story extension on your property, you don’t need planning permission. This is because the extension falls under permitted development.

However, any extension that goes beyond 50% of the garden around the “original property” will require planning permission. Also, if the materials you are using for the extension are different from those used in the original house, you will also need planning permission.


3. Getting the Right Designer

For you to get the right design for your side extension, it means that you must also choose the right architect or designer. Sometimes, people opt for those high-end companies found on the internet, which we don’t discourage, but sometimes you ought to look further.

These high-end practices tend to be busy and expensive, and sometimes not experienced enough for the small “normal-budget” projects. Therefore, before you start searching online for a designer, you can seek recommendations from family, friends, colleagues, or even neighbors.

When it comes to extension designs, you can work with either of the following professionals:

  • Architects
  • Specialist designers
  • Architectural technicians
  • In-house design teams for building companies

The fact is no project can be ultimately issue-free. However, having the right architect can make the project relatively painless.

Once you have the right design, it’s essential that you now find a licensed builder to undertake the project. You can do a background check of your builder to ensure you get the value you expect.


4. Inconvenience & Stress Caused

Any major renovation on your property will undoubtedly include an element of disturbance for people living there. So, during planning, you must also consider how much disruption the whole project will bring.

How will your family be affected? And, does the value added to the property justify the inconveniences? These are important scenarios that people planning to renovate or add extensions to their properties overlook.

You need to find ways to minimize inconveniences as much as possible or even prepare for a shift for the period the project will be carried out.


5. Whether or Not to Personally Manage Your Project

This is a common question that many people often ask. Well, the answer to this is dependant on various factors, including the owner’s ability to do so. However, holding other factors constant, the best person to supervise or manage the project is the owner.

According to Bob Branscombe, “No one knows the space or the building better than you, and nobody has a greater level of interest in getting it right.” You are the ideal person as you know better how you want the final extension to look like, and in case of any changes, you’ll be first to note and suggest.

That being said, it’s also advisable to seek the services of a professional project manager, if you think you don’t have what it takes. This is because project management requires some level of skills that the owner may be lacking.


6. Duration of the Project

The entire length of your project, right from the first consultation to the handing over of the completed project, should also be a significant factor to consider. It would help if you looked into things that may delay the completion of your project and see where you can adjust them.

Although some factors such as obtaining planning permission might be beyond your control, knowing how long it might take will help you plan better. For example, instead of just sitting there waiting for the planning permission that may even take months, you could be making sure that everything else is in order, to ensure immediate work commencement once you get the permit.

Remember. you are not only paying for the work done but also for people’s time. Therefore, avoiding any delays can significantly lower your costs.

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