Building a house extension is an investment, one that can put a sizeable dent in your wallet. And, as with all investments, the end goal is to get a bigger return on every invested dollar. While house renovations can typically show those returns quickly through market price changes, extensions signify a greater commitment to keeping your property and therefore are more of a long-term investment. Here are the most important things to consider to make your extension absolutely worth the effort.
Usually, people decide to extend when they feel that their family has outgrown their home. Your kids are growing up, you want your elderly parents to live closer to you or your social life is booming and your old living room no longer fits all of your friends at once. A Home extension is the perfect solution to all of these issues, creating a custom space for your needs at as little as a quarter of the expenses of buying and settling in new property.
However, a home extension is more than just a smart solution to the current issues that you have as a home-owner. Looking at the bigger picture and planning for the future goes a long way towards making sure your investment pays off. Consider where you see yourself and your family in five or ten years. Talk to your loved ones about their vision for your home. How old are your children and what are they planning to do after school? What is your vision for your career in the next few years? Do you think your hobbies might require some extra space down the line?
There are plenty of options for extensions – from multi generational homes for a big family and modular additions for those who value privacy and functionality to seamless house extensions that feel as if they have always been part of your home. And if you are unsure about the best extension plan for you, we are always happy to offer you some advice or you can download our free home extension guide.
From insulated vinyl to hardwood timber, acrylic paint or wallpaper, there’s a seemingly endless variety of options for every aspect of your home extension. The key to getting the best value for your money is, of course, picking the right ones. While each particular choice depends on the specifics of your project, here are some important aspects to consider:
- Site specifics. Depending on where your home is located, certain building materials may be preferable to others while some materials can be ruled out completely. Things like site accessibility can add additional price to heavier materials. Meanwhile, closeness to the coast or to the bush may require special protections against harsh winds or even fires.
- Durability and maintenance. High maintenance costs as well as pricey repairs may end up more expensive than the amount of money you saved on buying cheaper materials. Consider the amount of foot traffic and general wear your home extension is going to get before choosing the materials that would suit you best.
- Home extensions can be especially challenging to build as they need to be well integrated with the rest of your house. It is important that the building materials don’t put too much strain on the overall structure but it is equally as important not to compromise the quality of your extension.
- Last but not least! Deciding on the best materials can seem a bit like navigating dangerous seas at times but with technology constantly making new advances and new industries entering the market, you can always find the most suitable materials for the best prices.
It has become a buzzword by now but making sure your home is energy efficient can save you a lot of money and trouble in the long run. A lion’s share of energy-related expenses comes from heating and cooling and you need to take that into account when planning your extension.
Minimising expenses starts with a building plan that allows cross ventilation and optimal daylight throughout the year. Insulated materials, airlocks and weatherstripping prevent you from losing heat in colder months as well as keeping cool air inside during summer. The VBA also recommends grouping together utilities to minimise water heating expenses as well as reusing rain and grey water for cold taps and irrigation.
Finally, no matter your immediate plans for your home extension, do not lose sight of the property market in general. Real estate experts say aesthetics often play a significant role in attracting prospective buyers, so it is crucial that your extension fits well with the rest of your home, matching both structurally and visually. Better yet is combining landscaping, architecture and interior decorating to give your entire property a distinguished and cohesive style. Creating a warm and welcoming environment where every detail feels meaningful is the key to adding the most value with the least expenses.