When buying a home, you may think it’s the final word regarding your living space. But what if you want more space or simply need a new wing to accommodate your growing family? It’s pretty standard for homeowners to extend their homes these days—and as such, there are many ways and methods to do so effectively. One of the most popular ways to develop a house is by adding an attic or loft conversion. This extension involves creating new usable space in an existing home by converting unused attic space into living quarters. Consider many things before you make the leap and begin extending your home. Let’s take a look at some of the top factors to keep in mind before starting this project.
Do you need planning permission?
Getting planning permission before any major renovation or extension to your home is always a good idea. Getting planning permission will ensure you have the green light to extend your home and not waste time and money if you need to go back to the drawing board. It’s essential to check the rules regarding extensions and planning permission in your area, as requirements may differ depending on where you live.
If unsure, the best thing to do is to speak to your council’s planning department and see if your property falls under the necessary regulations. Depending on where your property falls, the rules vary and may require you to extend your home in a particular manner. Some areas may need you to install modern architectural features, such as a rooftop terrace or glass facade.
The structural integrity of your home
When you add an extension, you’re adding an additional load to the structure of your home, which is why you want to make sure your home can physically support the new addition. You can do this by hiring a structural engineer to survey to measure the existing strength of your home’s foundation and determine whether or not it can handle the additional weight. The engineer will perform a few tests to determine if your home has the necessary load-bearing capacity to support an extension, including a foundation survey and footing survey. They may also take measurements of your home’s walls and windows to determine the appropriate loading capacity. Once the engineer has the results from their tests, they’ll be able to tell you whether or not your house can handle the additional weight with their recommendations for things like adding support beams.
Is the party wall act applicable
The party wall act is a piece of legislation that governs the construction of erecting neighbouring buildings. If your house shares a wall with your neighbour, then a number of factors need to be taken into account before you begin extending your home. According to the Act, if you plan to expand your house and it shares a wall with a neighbour, you must have your plans approved by the neighbouring owner. If they don’t support your plans, they may have specific requirements you must follow to proceed.
The party wall act may also apply if you live in a multi-storey block of flats and are planning to extend your property. This can be a bit trickier, and you may need to consult with your neighbours and get their approval before moving forward with your plans. You’ll also want to ensure that your plans meet the requirements set by the building’s regulations, especially if your property was built before 1953.
Do you know the location of sewers on your property?
You’ll need to confirm the location of your sewer pipes before beginning the process of extending your home. This is because the lines may need to be rerouted if your plans call for digging on or near the pipes. If you have no idea where the sewer pipes are located, you can hire a plumber to locate them. If you plan to dig a hole that’s more than one metre deep, you’re required to have a soil survey to determine the sewer pipes’ location. A soil survey costs around £200, and it’s money well spent if your plans call for deep excavation. Various things can go wrong if you don’t know where your sewer pipes are located. You could puncture the pipes and cause sewage to leak, which would be a big problem.
Check your building regulations
Extending your home must comply with your local council’s building regulations. You can confirm this by visiting your council’s website and checking with the planning department to see the requirements for extending your home. If you don’t have building regulations in your area, you can simply conform to your local council’s standards and requirements. Whether or not your extension complies with the building regulations will depend on a variety of things, including the architectural style of your home, your lot size, and the location of your home. If you have specific architectural features in mind for your extension, you may have to submit your plans to the council for approval. This is important because it’ll ensure that the extension complies with regulations and is safe to live in.
Know your budget
Before you get started, you’ll want to know how much you can afford to spend on extending your home. There are many different ways to extend your home. Knowing which type of extension will be the most cost-effective for your needs is essential. To determine the most cost-effective extension type, you’ll need to determine how much space you need. This is best done by making a list of the occupants of your home and their needs. You may also want to consider the resale value of your home when deciding how much to spend on the extension.
What are you trying to achieve with the extension?
Before you begin extending your home, you must clearly envision what you want to achieve with the extension. Once you have a clear idea, you’ll be able to determine the best method for extending your home. Some factors to consider when choosing the best way to extend your home are the architectural style of your home, your lot size, and the occupants of your home.
If you want to create a bigger living space, one of the easiest ways is by extending your living room. You can also extend your kitchen/dining room, which will create more space for eating and entertaining. You can also create a new master bedroom on your home’s second or third floor.
Are you going to live on the property during the work?
There’s no doubt that extending your home is a huge process that takes time and money. But the good news is that you don’t have to do it all at once. If you don’t have the money to do the project all at once, you can break the project down into phases by extending your home in stages. While extending your home, it’s important to remember that you’ll need a lot of space to accommodate construction workers and equipment, which can be tricky if you live in a small space. When extending your home, choosing a contractor early is a good idea to work out all the details before construction begins. You’ll also want to ensure that the contractor you hire has experience in the type of extension you’re doing.
Extensions never run on schedule – are you ok with this?
When extending your home, you should remember that things rarely go according to schedule. Be prepared to take longer than you expect and factor in some extra time for things to go wrong. It’s essential to remain patient, communicate well with your contractor, and keep track of expenses to factor them into your final budget.
If you extend your home, ensure you integrate the new wing into the rest of the house, so it doesn’t look like an afterthought. You’ll also want to ensure you properly soundproof the new wing, so it doesn’t disturb the rest of the house.