Top Tips for Extending Your Home discussed by Guardian Roofs UK
If you are happy with the location of your home but you just don’t have enough space as you have outgrown it then it is often cheaper to extend rather than move house. The cost of just moving alone, let alone the cost of increasing the size of the house all add up and you will often opt for a bigger house but make comprises along the way, as an example, the area or street you move into may not be as nice as where you currently are, you may not have as much outdoor space as you have already or the layout of the house might not be exactly what you want. A lot of people will move house and end up spending money on their new house to try and make it into what they actually want. Read our Top Tips which will help you make the decisions you need to when you are deciding if extending your home or moving house is the best option for you.
Extending Your Home
The first thing you should do is to look at your house and make a wishlist of what you would like. This could be; wanting additional living space, a bigger kitchen, more bedrooms, a separate playroom or a den for the kids and their friends now they are getting older, or it may well be that you want more of an open plan living feel to your home. All of these things can be achieved if you have enough outdoor space to extend outwards, and if you don’t then you could always extend up into your roof to gain additional bedrooms or living space. Think of your home as a blank canvass and if you would start again what would you change, don’t think the rooms have to stay as they are, would it be better to change the use of rooms around, or maybe knock down an internal wall to open up two rooms into one.
Next, you can start looking at houses for sale that you would consider moving into, always remember you can change a house and its layout but you can’t change where it is, so try not to fall in love with a house that isn’t in the area that you want. When you get an idea of house prices you can calculate your increase in mortgage and add in all moving costs, including; stamp duty, mortgage charges/fees, conveyancing/solicitor costs, estate agent fees if you are selling your current home, valuation fees, surveyor fees, deposit needed for your new home, electronic transfer fees, removal costs and last but not least maintenance, repairs and alteration costs when you have moved. Even if you aren’t renovating a property there will always be things that need doing that you didn’t see when you viewed the property, including decorating it to your style and colours. All of these costs add up so always calculate them all before you take the first step and decide that you want to move.
Building an Extension
Next, you can calculate how much an extension will cost you. Extensions and building techniques have moved on so much in the last 10-years which has made some options cheaper, a lot quicker to build and with much less mess and disruption to your home whilst they are being constructed.
There are 3 options when it comes to extending your home:
- A Guardian SIP Extension
- A traditional Brick Built Extension which you project manage yourself
- A traditional Brick Built Extension which is project managed by an architect and builder
What are the benefits of adding additional space to your home?
- As your family gets bigger you may feel that you now need a separate room to be used as a playroom where all the kid’s toys and belongings can be stored rather than being scattered all over your house
- As your children get older you may now feel you need additional living space where they can chill with their friends, watch TV and play their games consoles
- If you don’t have children it’s lovely to have additional living space that you can make more formal and use to socialise when you have friends visit
- Perhaps you don’t have a separate dining room and you’re fed up of eating at a table in your kitchen, or you may currently eat with your meals on your laps in the lounge and you now feel like you want a separate dining area to eat and socialise in
- It may be that you want to open up your home into your garden and add a sunroom which can be used all year round. You can open up your doors in the summer and enjoy your garden or snuggle up in the winter and use it as an additional lounge
- You may be fed up of having a small kitchen and want to create an open plan kitchen and dining room
- If you work from home, or just want a separate room to use as an office then an extension can offer you this
- You may want a closed porch for wet coats and muddy boots so they aren’t walked into and through your house any more
- What about a downstairs toilet or bathroom which can be created without taking up too much of your outside space
- Extending into your roof can offer additional bedrooms or as an additional lounge or snug upstairs. Roof extensions are brilliant for creating more space in your home if you don’t have the room in your garden to extend out
Extending Your Home Considerations
Plan how you will use your new extension
You will be surprised but a lot of people extend their homes without thinking about how they will use their new space and how it will work with the rest of their home and for their family. When this happens people can often wish they had extended differently as the additional space isn’t used as much and effectively as it could have been. By planning your extension with a defined use in mind you will get the most out of your extra space and the money you have invested.
Think about extending your home it as a blank canvass
An extension can be a first and second-floor extension or building up into your loft to make the most of your existing home. You can change the use of existing rooms so you get the flow you are looking for, look at different styled roofs, the shape of your extension and internal and external doors to open up your space into the garden. Consider glazed sliding or bi-folding doors to transition into your extension.
Consider where you will add your extension
Where you add your extension is really crucial with how it looks and fits with your home and its surroundings. You may not have a huge amount of options due to access and outside space but even if you are restricted you can plan the design of your new extension to complement or even contrast your existing home and its surroundings.
Decide on the materials you want when you are extending home
Brick, tile, render, cladding, material type and colour are essential for the finished look of your extension. Do your research on the internet and look for ideas for the exterior and interior of your extension so you really think outside of the box.
Set a budget for extending your home
Extending your home is often a cheaper and more cost-effective way of increasing the space in your home compared to moving, however, it is really important that you budget not only for your build but for all of the fixtures, fittings and finishes as it’s common to overspend on even the smallest projects. You should also include architect and planning costs as these are normally more than you think they will be
Talk to your neighbours when you have planned your home extension
At this point, you can talk to your neighbours and get them on your side so that if you need to submit planning permission they don’t raise any objections which can make your planning application more difficult. A simple catch up with them to show them what you are planning, the design and why you want to extend will get them involved and help them understand your proposal so hopefully, they won’t object. Ask them if they are unsure about anything and if they have any objections and ask them for their thoughts.
Think about your outdoor space after you have extended your home
Think about your outdoor space and how you will use it when your extension is finished, do you want bi-folding doors that open up into the garden and a revamped and spruced garden with clean patio slabs and garden pots to add a bit of colour.
Choose the right construction and company for your extension
Choosing the right construction is critical to achieving your budget. A traditionally built extension will cost more than a Guardian Extension and look no different. A Guardian extension is designed to your specification, it is 50% quicker to construct, there are on average a 30% reduction of labour costs, less mess and waste, and they are highly energy-efficient with beautiful finishes inside and out to compliment your existing home. A good, reputable and professional extension company will work with you from start to finish to give you a beautiful home extension, helping you with the minefield of permitted development, planning permission and building regulations so you don’t need to worry.
If you decide to go with a traditional brick-built extension then choosing the right architect and builder is crucial to ensure you achieve the finished extension you have dreamed of, and within budget.
Extending Your Home with a Guardian SIP Extension
Guardian SIP Extensions are a great and cost-effective way to extend your home. SIP Extensions use pre-fabricated structural insulated panels that are manufactured in a factory and delivered to your home when construction is ready to start. The SIP (Structurally Insulated Panels) panels consist of an insulating polystyrene core which is sandwiched between two structural facings. SIP’s are now used instead of the more conventional brick, blocks, or timber frames as they are 50% quicker to construct with a 30% reduction in labour costs. A good SIP Extension Company will offer you free advice, design, measuring and quotation service, as well as project managing your extension from start to finish. They will have extensive knowledge of planning and building regulations and this will form part of their service to you. You can have as much input into the design of your extension as you like and they will work with you to find a solution that makes staying where you are and not moving a workable and cost-effective option, resulting in a beautifully finished extension that compliments your home.
What are the benefits of extending your home with a Guardian SIP Extension?
- The SIP panels are manufactured to your design and measurement in a quality-controlled factory
- The panels are delivered to you in a modular construction providing a strong and superior build and fast installation
- They have an insulated roof and walls, double-glazed windows and strong, steel-reinforced structures
- The panels are exterior grade plywood
- They combine Kingspan Tek-Panels with the Guardian Warm Roof System
- The panels have 3 layers of high-performance rigid Kingspan insulation board
- They have outstanding energy-efficiency, with a U-value of 1.0 W/m2K making them the most energy-efficient home extensions available
- The construction is 50% faster with a 30% reduction of labours costs with no on-site waste and minimal mess
- They are an affordable alternative to traditional brick-built structures
- There are a huge range of brick, tile and slate colours and finishes available
- They are designed to your bespoke needs and design ideas
- They offer accelerated planning approval or can be constructed under the permitted development rules with full building control
- You will receive, design, planning and technical support from start to finish from Guardian Extension experts
- SIP panels use much less timber than typical timber frames and are one of the most economical and eco-friendly forms of construction making them good for the environment
- They are thermally efficient which keep you warm in the winter and cool in the summer. The structurally insulated panel homes provide amazing thermal performance
- Their ventilated roof eliminates condensation in your new extension
- They are a quicker and more cost-effective way to increase the space in your home or business (both in the panel fabrication and construction)
- There are no issues with shrinkage or settlement and overcome cold bridging issues associated with other forms of offsite construction
- The compact panels take up less of your floor space, maximising the space you are creating
- They have airtight and soundproof walls (the insulated panels significantly reduce noise penetration)
- They come with a standard rainwater system
- They come with internal flooring
- They are internally finished to match your design
- You can have Velux Roof Windows incorporated into your finish
- They will increase the value of your home or business
- Guardian SIP Extensions are fully guaranteed
What makes a SIP extension different?
- SIP extensions are immediately thermally efficient compared to brick or stonework where inner stud walls and insulation need to be added after the walls have been built
- They are warm in the winter and cool in the summer
- They are quicker to construct than a traditionally built extension and construction times are significantly less, they can reduce your build time by up to 75%
- The waste, mess and disruption caused by the construction of a SIP extension is far less compared to a traditionally built extension
- They can reduce your heating and energy costs when finished
- They are designed, constructed and finished by the SIP extension company so you don’t need to engage builders and different trades to manage throughout your extension project
- SIP panel structures don’t have issues with shrinkage or settlement and overcome cold bridging issues associated with other forms of construction
- SIP panels are thin and compact, taking up less space than other external wall build types, resulting in maximised space
SIP Planning Consent & Building Regulations
SIP’s raise no issues when obtaining planning approval for your extension and are now an accepted construction method by local authorities. The ground conditions on your extension site and your design will have an effect on your final planning approval as with any planning application. As with other traditional builds, a SIP extension can have traditional cavity and brick or stone wall, render, brick slips, timber cladding, slate, copper, zinc, stainless standing seam and your external design will be included as part of your planning approval request.
Budget for a SIP Extension
When you have understood how much a SIP extension will cost you should always add in any costs associated with finishing internally and this can include, paint, wallpaper, furnishings and light fittings. The money you need to set aside for your extension depends on the purpose of the new space, so as an example; a kitchen will need a bigger budget compared to a snug, study, dining room or bedroom. The best advice is to budget carefully from the planning stages including any other work you want to do to your house internally and externally.
To keep costs down but to make your new space look more expensive look for eye-catching fittings and furnishings. A feature light, pictures on the walls, cushions and throws will all make your new extension look and feel luxurious.
Traditional Style Brick Built Extensions
If you decide to go with a traditional older style brick built extension then knowing exactly what the project will cost you before you start is essential. If you are saving money by project managing the extension yourself and employing sub-contractors, it may be cheaper if you source and provide all the building materials they need yourself. You will need an architect to design and draw up plans for your extension, apply for planning permission and find reliable builders and tradespeople that are available when you need them. All of this can be stressful and is very time-consuming and you really shouldn’t underestimate it. You will need to familiarise yourself with planning guidelines and legislation as well as building terminology, what they will be doing and when, and when will they be finished so the next tradesperson can start their bit of the build. Factor any material delivery times into your plan and update the timescales daily so you know the impact of any delays.
If your extension doesn’t need Planning Permission, it will need Building Regulations Approval which is in place to enforce construction standards across the UK. Building regulations safeguard designs by making sure any buildings are constructed safely and correctly and inspections happen at different stages of your build to prevent unprofessional procurement and unsafe building techniques.
You can read our full article on Permitted Planning, Planning Permission and Building Regulations here.
If you don’t have the time to project manage your extension yourself then you can try and find a competent, reliable and available builder who will take on the day-to-day management of your extension. Always have a contract in place with them which breaks down the costs and always go for a fixed quote rather than an hourly rate otherwise costs will nearly always spiral out of control. A fixed-price contract means the builder or building company and yourself agree on a set price for the work before the project begins. Always be aware that changing things as you go along will often change a fixed price quote so always take your time to plan and be 100 per cent sure you are happy with it before the work begins. You should always have a clear contract or letter that is signed by yourself and your builder detailing what will be done for the amount being paid, in what timescales and any extras.
Moving or Extending Your home
When you have decided on your extension you can compare the cost of moving with the cost of extending your home to decide which is the better option for you. Always remember adding an extension will add value to your home so the money you spend on the build will normally equal or be less than the increased valuation of your home, compared to moving costs which are money spent that you will never see back.
Extending your home can be immensely rewarding and can make a big difference to your lifestyle and with the right company and planning, you will have a beautifully finished extension which compliments your home inside and out.
About Guardian Roofs UK
We are leaders in the supply and installation of market-leading Guardian SIP Extensions with guaranteed performance and competitive pricing. We are committed to the efficient planning, design, installation and finish and our whole team have a commitment to quality, Health & Safety and the environment.
Contact us on 0845 508 9632 today and one of our team will be able to answer any questions you may have or can book your free consultation site meeting for you.