Home Extensions - The Low Down

Get the low down on home extensions!

Home extension advice

Home extensions are the perfect solution for homeowners who are outgrowing their home and don’t want to move. A house extension offers the ability to expand the floorplan of your existing property and is a great way to add value to your home. 
Perfectly suited to homeowners who have a property where the footplate is small, but the garden is large. 
So how do you prepare yourself for your home extension build process? 

Size does matter

Bigger is not always better when adding a home extension, and many homeowners can get preoccupied with the scale of the project instead of the utilisation and flow of the spaces. Exceptional spaces can be created by simply adding a few metres. However, the square footage of the extension has to be dictated by your requirements, and you should asses your needs for space and allow it to inform your decisions on the footplate. Remember, the larger the extension the more it will cost, so budgetary concerns must also come into play when making metreage decisions. 

Make it add value

Adding a home extension can potentially add value to your home. It can be difficult to work out whether your home design will pay for itself in the long run. Be aware of the ceiling in your area, and do some research into the local properties to see what the prices are like. Be prepared to adjust your design based on this analysis if it is important to you that your property resale reimburses you for the extension build. 

Complementary or Contrasting designs

Anyone who has watched any of the home design television shows will know that when creating an extension, there is a major decision to make over the finish of the build and whether you try to merge the old and new in a seamless and sympathetic manner, or if you decide to contrast with the existing design and opt for completely different materials, with a modern and striking design. 

Creating an energy efficient space

Most of us never get the opportunity to build our own home from scratch, and adding an extension is often the closet we ever get to making serious decisions about the materials used in the fabric of our home. A home extension give home owners the opportunity to make choices regarding the energy efficiency of their home. 
Some of the options to improve the energy efficiency of your home with your home extension include: 
- Skylights letting in natural heat and light
- Underfloor heating
- Heat source pump
- Solar panels
- Insulation
- Build materials

Planning in Services for a House Extension

If your extension will be incorporating a kitchen or bathroom then you will need to consider the services required for this, dependant on the type of home you have. Whether you will require gas, electrics, plumbing will depend on your requirements for the space, and what existing services are supplied to your home. 

Heating Systems

It worth bearing in mind that your existing heating system may not be able to cope with the addition of an extension and you may require a boiler upgrade in order to heat your modified home. You may need advice to work out what your extension will require to be heated effectively and efficiently.  You will need to factor in your boiler output, radiator size,  hot water cylinder size and the reheat time to work out if your will need to upgrade the system or if your existing heating system will suffice. 

Planning Permission

Whether a house extension will require planning permission or not will depend on whether it fits into a strict set of parameters set out by the government. Permitted development allow people to add space to their home without applying for planning permission, however the permitted development specifics can be quite restrictive. If your home is in a conservation area, area of great natural beauty or if your property is a listed building then it is very unlikely that your will be able to make any home additions under permitted development. 

Building control and home extensions

Before any building work commences, building control will need to be notified of the works, and will need to be supplied with either a building notice or full plans with the applications. A building notice will allow for work to commence quicker, however it is always preferable to apply in full to ensure that building control has signed off the design in its entirety and that the build meets the building regulations standards. 

Let there be light

When building a home extension, it is important to consider the direction and quality of the light. Both for your own enjoyment of your home addition, but also for your neighbours. 
Neighbours are entitled to light and any structure which impedes light or overshadows their property may be contested, so it is very important as you go through the design process to consider this in your designs.
More importantly, you should consider the light entering your own home. You have the power, during your extension build project to control and shape the light entering the property. Many homeowners opt for the “more is better” approach to lighting in their extensions, but  considered placement of windows and doors to control the quality of light entering at different points of the day can really change the way a space is enjoyed in the long run. 

To Stay or to go? 

It is possible to live on site during an extension build, because the majority of the works are done externally before knocking through. However, even with the best behaved contractors, building work is messy and cause plenty of dust and disruption. Not to mention that It is possible that remaining on site during an extension build could potentially add delays to the project, so it is advised that homeowners find temporary accommodation during their extension build.

Do Refresh offer extension build services? 

Refresh are not just builders; we offer a comprehensive renovation package! From conception to completion, Refresh will full manage your project through the design and build process to ensure your project remains on track with budgets and timelines. We work with trusted and tested contractors to maintain a quality finish on your project. We provide you with a single point of contact with a friendly, professional and reliable service. 

Would you like to learn more about Refresh?

We’re delighted to offer you a complimentary no-obligation consultation in your home to discuss your home extension or addition and to explain the Refresh process. 

Why not call us today or enquire online to find out more and arrange an appointment?

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