When purchasing a home, people tend to take into account the space needed in their current situation with a bit of forethought about the future to include an extra bedroom or so. However, the unpredictability of the future where the space requirements change (for example, a new member arrives or the need for a home office arises) means you could end up needing additional square footage.
At this point, you have three choices: cram everything into the same space, sell and move to a bigger house, or stay put and build an extension. Being an affordable and clever remedy to the issue, choice 3 (a house extension) is a popular choice for many. However, there are definitely several pros and cons you should consider before making a firm decision — keep scrolling to learn more.
Pros of A Home Extension
Increases Property Value
Not only does a home extension make your home a more comfortable space to live in, but it can also make you a pretty penny if you ever decide to sell it. In the UK, a study by mortgage provider Nationwide stated that “an extension creating a double bedroom and ensuite can boost up to 23 per cent to the value of a property, an extra bathroom up to 6 per cent, and an extra double bedroom can add 12 per cent.”
Easier And More Affordable Than Shifting To A New Home
An extension saves you from many additional selling costs like the Real Estate Agent fees, legal fees, Stamp Duty or documentary stamp taxes, moving fees, etc., and eliminates the hassle of finding a new home (and multiple processes associated with it), physically packing all your belongings, and shifting them to the new space — both aspects making an extension much more easy and affordable than moving home.
Lets You Build A Space Fit For Your Purpose
What purpose(s) do you want your additional square footage to serve — a walk-in closet, a great room, an additional bedroom and bathroom, a home office, or a dining room? As opposed to moving to a home where you might find extra space that is not exactly fit for purpose, an extension is a flexible, customisable option that can adapt to all your requirements.
You Get To Design Things Your Way
The home you own might be a property that was initially created by a builder and altered by multiple homeowners over the years. By painting the walls, installing new floors, remodelling the kitchen, or going for a bathroom renovation, you only get to incorporate a slight personal touch to an existing property. A home extension allows you to design a space that fits and fulfils all your requirements and preferences without the costs of a whole new house.
Cons of A Home Extension
Higher Resale Price Not Guaranteed
A higher sale price is based on multiple factors. One is the location, for instance, that cannot be changed. Others include factors like the size and number of rooms, adequate square footage, the way you stage it, and whether or not it’s a leasehold (in the UK). While an extension certainly increases space, it does not overcome the rest of the elements that may have a bigger impact on the value of your home.
Similarly, if your extension appears to be a cheap tack-on or the extension costs exceed the market value of the homes in your area, then your home might fail to offer you a high sale price. So, just like you’re avoiding all the renovations that can hurt your home’s resale value, make sure to mould your extension into one that enhances the liveability and looks, and most importantly, does not reduce the value of your home.
Extensions Are Disruptive
An extension can be a tiring and stressful process where your day-to-day routine will be disrupted, especially if you choose to stay in the home during the construction period. Along with being a hectic full-time job, there are tons of other challenges associated with an extension, some of which include:
Noise and pollution
Lack of privacy
Having work crews at home six days a week
Your Extension Options Are Constrained By Various Factors
With the restrictions of an extension, you might not be able to expand a specific room as far as you want, or the existing layout and design of the house may limit the choices in regard to additional building. This means you will have to adjust your expectations and plans in line with the limitations, and you may also have to skimp on some features from your wishlist.
The Outdoor Space Sacrificed May Outweigh The Extension’s Value
An extension is not always a golden ticket to value addition; it can sometimes backfire in several ways. For example, an extension will use up outdoor property space (unless you extend vertically). Whether it’s a garage, a patio, a driveway, or a yard, you should be prepared to sacrifice some outdoor space while ensuring that the cost of this loss is lower than the value you’re adding with the extension — if your objective is to increase resale value.
While a home extension has its pros and cons, whether or not it’s a suitable option really just comes down to your requirements, budgets, and expectations. Start by closely scrutinising each benefit and drawback, speak to everyone who will be involved and affected, and then decide if it’s a worthwhile investment.
Still confused if an extension is the right move for you? Contact one of our Architecture & Planning Gurus, who will discuss your objectives and budget, and give you neutral, expert advice tailored to your needs.