Lots of people have ideas for extending their property. Many people visualise extensions to a property before they have even bought it; others start to think about extending as their family expands and they run out of room. But what are the basic steps you should take to build an extension? Here is a brief guide.
Decide whether to move or extend
The first decision you need to make is whether to move or extend. These days, with recession in the UK, many people are looking at alternatives to moving home, and extending their property is one way. Before you plunge in with new footings, however, it is worth doing more research to find out what kind of extension would be most beneficial to your property. What do you need? But also ask yourself, what would add most value to your property? Also consider that as a general rule increasing the value to more than 20% higher than the highest value in the area will almost certainly result in the loss of that extra value – the area simply won’t sustain such apparent increases.
If you have decided that extending your property is the right decision, you need to get some idea of how much it will cost, and whether you will be able to finance the project. At this stage you need to begin to talk to architects about the design and builders about the likely cost, before then seeing providers about finance. These days interest rates may be low and therefore the cost of borrowing may appear to be cheap, but the problems are not with the cost of money, but with getting the nod to actually borrow it in the first place.
Most extensions require planning permission and building regulations approval. These come from your local council. Different councils have different views, so it is a good idea to have an early discussion with the planning department of your local council to see what you may be allowed to build. You can save yourself a lot of time and trouble by doing this.
After all the decisions, finances and red tape, the easy bit is getting the extension built! If – as you should have – you have spoken to a builder in the early stages of the process, then you should already have chosen who is going to build your extension and be in the happy position of building a positive relationship with them. Make sure you have a project manager (this in often the builder), and keep in close contact with them throughout the process of building the extension. Progress may seem to vary from fast to slow, but when you’re sipping a glass of celebratory wine with the smell of newness all around you it will all seem worthwhile!
See us at Every Trade for help with your extension in the UK.