Building an extension is often considered by many homeowners to give them more space and potentially add value to their homes, with that said, there are so many things to consider and the whole process can be reasonably stressful as well as costing a small fortune. Our handy checklist will cover the essentials of building an extension to help you on the way. Our guide will cover planning permission, what you want to achieve, and selecting the right professionals to help you with the job in hand.
What would you like to achieve?
The first thing to think about is the reason for your extension and what type of extension you’d like to go ahead with. Are you wanting another bedroom in the loft, a conservatory, or even an office space? Questions like this are important as different rules are in place for different extensions, for example, for a loft extension to technically be recognised as a bedroom it must have a ceiling height of 2m. Make your decision and do a little extra reading around the extension type you are looking for.
Just the thought of planning permission can put homeowners into a spin as most have no idea where to start, but the good news is planning permission for extensions are usually not required due to what is known as permitted development. Under permitted development there is strict criteria but most of the time your extension will not break these rules, this criteria includes ensuring that your extension is not 50% larger than the land area of your “original house” and your extension cannot become closer to the public highway. If the roof needs to be raised, such as in a loft conversion this is where planning permission may be required, for more information check out the permitted development criteria.
When building an extension, it’s highly likely you’re going to need help, unless you are a professional in the trade. When researching and planning you’ll save a lot of time if you have a clear picture of how you’d like the extension to look and specifically what you’d like to achieve. Take a look online as some inspiration and try to sketch out what you’d like, this will help the builder understand your requirements and may save time at the start of the project.
Talk through your requirements with a few different professionals and be sure to get multiple quotations as well as checking the reviews and recommendations. Don’t let price be the only factor when coming to a decision on who to give the go ahead to, cheapest isn’t always best. It’s beneficial to get on with your builder and ensure they have a clear understanding of what you’d like to achieve.
Other things to consider when building an extension
Now you’ve done your research, you should be well on your way to building your perfect extension. There are also a few other things to consider before giving someone the green light to go ahead. When you’ve received your quotes, you should ensure it’s as clear and as black and white as possible, this is to see all charges, beware of day rates as sometimes these can be more expensive. Before starting your extension consider additional insurance in case any issues from the project arise.
One final thing to consider which is often not thought about is where you’re going to stay while the work is being carried out. When work begins at your home it will become a temporary building site with tools, cement mixers, scaffold towers and other materials hanging around. Living in this space could slow down the project.
In Summary – The Checklist
In summary there is so much to think about when building an extension but in very simple terms you should; decide exactly what you want, research inspiration and building regulations, see if you require planning permission and get quotations from reputable builders to help you on your way.