Home Extensions | Seven Common Mistakes

Each year eight million homeowners undergo home extensions and renovations (Roy Morgan, 2017). With the millions that make this decision, nine out of 10 choose to work with professional help. Even with professional help, there are still mistakes made in the journey of creating your dream home, below are a few ways to combat them.

Not having a clear goal

A clear goal is extremely important when thinking of altering your home. While there are extension builders in Melbourne who are flexible and will adapt to changes throughout the construction process, having a clear goal in place will minimise regret when the process is finalised.

There have been instances of homeowners undertaking an extension without a clear end-goal. These projects often end up with blown-out deadlines and a painstakingly long process.

It’s important to think about the overall layout when making any alterations. Who will be using this space? How will these extensions enhance the usability and accessibility of your Melbourne home?

Check out our house extension plans for some helpful ideas.

Choice of materials

When looking at materials for your extension, it’s important the colours and textures compliment the existing building. Jarring materials can cause future problems for the resale of your home and a general perception of a lack in quality of the work.

Your extension should appear as if it was constructed with the original building. If you want to use new materials, it is strongly advised to apply these features in the existing property to create a seamless aesthetic.

For a more information, have a look at our in-depth cladding guide

Not being realistic

Nothing is free in this world, and that certainly is the case for anything home related. Understanding the cost of a home extension in Melbourne and what you can get for your budget is a critical point in the journey.

When looking at your budget and what you want to achieve, write down a list of what you need versus what you want. If it comes down to shaving costs from your job, look to the items in the latter.

Furthermore, when coming to your initial budget allow for 20-30% above what you thought the project would cost.


A failure of overcapitalising often comes from a failure in planning. While analysing your budget for the home extension, it’s important to ensure that any money put into the project can be recouped when you decide to sell.

Overcapitalising is important for those wanting to sell immediately and involves considerable research before making any decisions. All homeowners should still undertake this research.

To help make a decision on your investment, do thorough research into local property values and whether the alterations you are planning will satisfy those in the market. Talk to local real estate agents and get valuations of your current home as well as the home you are creating; this will help you make an informed decision for the scale of your renovations.

Forgetting outside

As we improve things on the inside, the outside is often a forgotten element of your home – but just as important. From the façade to the backyard, these elements help shape initial opinions on your home and its worth.

With trends towards outdoor living, it’s important to create a functional and comfortable outdoor space. Melbourne’s weather is unpredictable at the best of times so factoring in an enclosed, year-round outdoor entertaining space via a deck or alfresco extension will become a great investment for the future of your property.

In addition, removing large attractive trees can be detrimental to your property, with a cost loss of $10,000 to $15,000. It’s important to be aware of the impact sacrifices may have on your property overall. Many Melbourne suburbs have restrictions on the removal of certain trees, so be sure to check with your local council before lopping any trees.

Choosing quantity over quality

In the hopes of getting “bang for you buck”, many Melbourne homeowners choose to work with builders offering cheap quotes, and are often left to pay for the poor quality.

When sourcing quotes, only approach those you plan on working with and do some research into their reputation before asking for an initial price. Cheap isn’t always better, and when it’s for something as important as your family home, it’s worth choosing quality every time.

Using the wrong professionals

Selecting the wrong extension builder can become a nightmare for the success of your build. From poor tradespeople to blown-out budgets and general dissatisfaction, the implications of the wrong builder are far-reaching and have massive effects on your end goal.

There are many elements to think of when selecting the right extension builder, however, the first step should always be to check their licenses and registrations. This can easily be done online, and something a good builder should be happy to supply. We’ve listed a series of things to look for when selecting extension builders in Melbourne and what you need to know over here at our Resources Page.


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