An extension to your home is one of the biggest projects you can take on, but it can offer excellent opportunities to expand your space and add value to your property. However, it’s a project that requires a lot of planning, so in order to ensure your extension is successful, you need to do your research and project management effectively. It’s easy to become overwhelmed by everything that a property extension entails – here are six tips to help the project run more smoothly.
Have a Budget
Even the smallest projects can swiftly run over budget, so it’s a good idea to have a plan in place for how much you can afford to spend before you start planning out your extension. A good rule of thumb is to allow between £1000 and £2000 per square metre, and then add an extra 10% as a contingency fund. There’s not only the build itself to consider but also any consultancy fees, planning permission fees and, if you’re using a designer or an architect, they will have their own service costs. As you go through the process of extending your property, track your spending carefully so you can stay on budget.
Depending on the shape and size of the extension, you may need to apply for planning permission. Each council has its own process for this so it’s worth checking with your local council before you start your application. Even if you don’t need planning permission, you should still check that you have Building Regulations Approval and, if your extension will affect your neighbours in any way, you may need to safeguard yourself against the Party Wall Act.
Source What Your Need Early On
From tiles, radiators and skirting boards to carpets and light fixtures, there are many items you will need to make a decision on. But making these types of decisions when your extension is being built can hold up the process – plus, you don’t want to feel pressured into making a choice when you haven’t given it enough thought. Make a list of everything you will need to make a choice about early on so you can do your research and price up products. It also gives you the opportunity to look for offers and deals to save money.
Consider the Surroundings
Where your property is located makes a big impact on the design of your extension. The best property extensions are sympathetic to the rest of the building – you don’t want to add a contemporary addition to a period property, for example, as it will look out of place. Use your surroundings and the style of your home to influence your decisions and complement your home.
Research Materials Thoroughly
Materials make a big difference to the overall finish of a property, so do your homework when it comes to the materials and manufacturers available. Timber cladding is a popular choice that’s used a lot in extensions, and it can give a wonderfully rustic feel to the overall result. If a cleaner finish is something you’re striving for, a mix of white render and slate, combined with expansive glazing, is a great option.
Choose Your Builder Carefully
A crucial step in the overall success of your home extension is the builder you choose – going with the wrong company can quickly turn your dreams of a seamless experience into a nightmare. Take a look at the previous projects they’ve worked on, read testimonials and reviews from past customers, and make sure you have several chats with them beforehand to check they’re on the same page as you in terms of what you want.
Extending a property can be incredibly rewarding and it can make a big difference to the way you use your home and your lifestyle. Use your insight into how you currently use the space in your home to inform your decisions when it comes to planning the layout. Also, make sure you do plenty of research in advance to gain as much information and advice before you tackle this vast project. If you know people, whether family, friends or colleagues, who have been there and understand how the process works, it can be useful to talk to them, so you know what’s ahead of you. It’s also worthwhile speaking to different companies to gauge who will be the best fit for you and your needs.