How to extend your house to maximise living space and increase your property value

With recent figures showing that property value is still rising, there are fewer houses being brought and sold. On average people now move every 14 and a half years which is much less frequent than has been the case in the past. Due to this there has been a rise in people choosing to extend their properties. There are many good reasons for this, one been that it is often more economical to extend rather than to move. One of the main reasons for this is due to the stamp duty on the most expensive houses currently at four percent. Then if you add in the agent fees for selling your house this is usually a similar amount that you would pay to extend your house before you even think about the extra money you have to pay for moving into a bigger house.

Another reason people are choosing to extend is also due to the hassle that comes with moving. If you have children you might need to find them a new school, register everything to the new address and even the neighbourhood itself. If you like the area you live in, have friendly neighbours and friends that live close by these can all count to people rather extending their property rather than moving to a new one.

Planning and building regulations

One of the most important factors to consider when planning an extension is that you make sure the extension will add to the value of the property no matter how big or small you are planning. This means making use of what space you extend onto the house, so making sure rooms are a good size and in suitable places. Another factor to consider before you look to get plans drawn up are the area your building onto, for instance:

  • What are the ground conditions?
  • Are there any surrounding trees?
  • Does the area have a history of flooding?
  • Do you have rear access for building materials or will they go through the house?

These are all factors which could affect the price of an extension. It is worth considering all these points and even going to speak to someone at the local planning office to find out informally what might be permitted especially if you are planning anything out of the ordinary. It is wise to research the local planning policies so that you are aware of any problems you might have with planning before spending money on a plan that will be refused. At Four Corners Properties ltd we have lots of experience in building extensions so know the planning officials well and can advise on what might and might not get permission, but it does all depend on the are in which the property is situated. It is also worth talking in detail with whoever creates your plans so that you are getting exactly what you want for a price you can afford, making sure they have done a detailed plan of how much everything costs so there are no financial surprises later on.

Under the Permitted Development Rights system a large number of home extensions can be built without the requirement of planning permission so you may or may not require consent for your proposed extension. It should be noted however, that if your property is near a Conservation Area or a National Park, the amount of work allowed is usually reduced by planning development but this can be checked with the local planning authorities.

Building Control

All building work, whether or not you need planning permission needs approval  by the building regulations. These are rules set by parliament to make sure fire and other forms of safety, insulation, drainage and access are all up to the correct standards. These are minimum design and construction standards which must be met for all building work. Building control officers do not supervise work on your behalf. Their role is to ensure the minimum standards of the building regulations have been adhered to. Most self-builders and extenders send what is called a Full Plan Submission to their local authority. In this case you pay a fee and the building inspector visits the site at the various stages of the build and inspects the work as it proceeds.

Payments

Depending on the size of the extension payments plans can often be arranged as not everyone has thousands of pounds sat in their bank accounts. At Four Corners Properties ltd we can set up a payment scheme to help you pay for any work as and when it is carried out so if its a big job you might not have to fork out all of it before the work commences. We also offer a breakdown plan of what you will be charged for, everything from local authority application fees to building supplies. You will get a quality service where you can see how much each part of the job will cost you so that you know your money is being spent wisely. You will also have a guarantee that any work carried out will be to your satisfaction so you can have confidence in the job we are doing.

If you have any thoughts about getting an extension added to your home feel free to get in touch and see what options you have as you might find it to be a great benefit to you and your family.

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