Whether there have been new additions to the family, or you have simply outgrown your home, an extension can give you extra space and add significant value to your property, all without the hassle of having to relocate.
But, there are a few things to bear in mind during the process. Most of us aren’t familiar with building sites, regulations and planning permission, but a little bit of knowledge can go a long way to prevent any issues arising later down the line.
Before you get carried away with all of your new home extension ideas, it is important to consider a few key things.
What Is Your Budget and Time Frame?
Firstly, you’ll need to set out a budget. This is because your contractors will ask you what you are willing to pay for the extension straight away.
While every contractor will have their own pricing systems, you can get a rough estimate of how much the work will cost. Now, these estimates won’t take into account any custom work you will need completing, but it should give you an idea of how much the work should cost.
Just try and stick to your budget as much as possible — it can easily creep up when little extras come along, especially when it comes to the aesthetic of the finished extension.
You’ll also want to be sure that you’re working with a realistic timeframe. These types of projects don’t just pop up overnight — and if they did, would you really trust the quality?
The seasons, the weather and any family holidays you may have planned all factor into the timeframe of your project, so it’s important to sit down with your contractor and ask when you should begin your project. You should also ask them give you a realistic estimate of how long they think it will take to complete. Of course, this is subject to everything going smoothly — you will need to consider any issues which may arise along the way.
What Is Its Purpose?
Have you decided what the purpose of your new home extension will be? While there are many different reasons for extending a property, the main purpose often dictates certain aspects of the design.
For example, if you want your new space to be a special, cosy area, do you really want large windows where people can potentially peer in and disturb your peace and quiet? Or are you extending your dining room? No one wants to eat their dinner in the dark, so you should think about the lighting during the design stage.
Get Planning Permission
Perhaps the most important thing to think about is whether or not you can get planning permission for the additional space. If you allow the work to go ahead before getting the right permissions, you could be asked to remove the extension at your own expense.
Some extensions will not need planning permission, as long as they meet certain conditions and limits. However, rather than assuming that you don’t need planning permission because the extension is on your property, it’s always best to double check.
It is more likely that you will be denied planning permission if:
- Your home is located in a conservation area.
- You plan on increasing the height of your property. Side extensions, for example, must be single storey and they cannot be over 4 metres in height.
- Your planned work will increase the length of your home significantly. You can extend your home by 8 metres if you live in a detached single storey property, or 3 metres if you have more than one floor.
- You do not want to use the material that was originally used to build your home.
- The space you are adding to your property will cover a significant amount of your garden.
- You live in a home of historical value — listed buildings cannot be altered without permission from your local planning authority.
To get the planning permission you need, get in touch with your local planning authority. They will offer you important advice when it comes to getting your plans approved, and getting your application pushed through a quickly as possible.
Set Up Safe Gas and Electricity Connections
When you add new rooms to your property, it is important to think about your gas and electricity connections, too. If you are making large and complex changes to a property, it may be the case that you need to set up a new electricity connection or a new gas supply.
However, if you are planning to make relatively straight forward changes to your home, it is more likely that you will need a gas supply upgrade. This is because, as you will be changing the layout of your home, the layout of your pipework may need to be re-positioned, too.
Every home is different, so you will need to use a service that is tailored to you when you are organising your gas supply upgrade. That’s where we come in. Here at Utility Smart, our dedicated team will manage the whole process of upgrading your supply from start to finish. From completing the necessary checks at the start and relaying all of the pipework, to working with your suppliers, we will handle everything for you.
Not sure where to start when it comes to changing your gas or electricity connection? Contact the team today and they will answer any questions you have. Alternatively, get a free quote from us so you can start planning your new extension right away.