When planning an extension, it is easy and understandable to get caught up in the excitement of the end result. Before you reach that stage, there is a lot of planning and coordinating that should take place. You are going to live with this extension for a long time and it can dramatically increase the value of your home, so you must address the new build with discipline and structure.
Local Requirements and Restrictions – The first step should be to understand and comply with local ordinances that might govern the construction of the extension. These can be local construction guidelines or neighbourhood association guidelines. In some cases, you may need to apply for variances to make your build possible. You may have to complete a series of applications in order to receive a permit to build. What you must avoid is planning your extension without the security of knowing it will comply with local regulations. If you violate a local ordinance, you could be fined and you could be compelled to knock your new kitchen down!
Foundation Check – You should have your foundation checked to see how the new extension will work with the existing structure. You want to be sure that new footings will not ruin the existing foundation and your home’s stability.
Budget – Before getting too deep into the planning stage, set a reasonable budget. If you are financing the extension, meet with a lender and get a commitment letter that states all the terms of the loan. Review them carefully and make sure you can afford the down payment requirement and can afford the monthly payment. If you are paying cash, make sure the funds will be available in increments and that you will not be cash-poor at the end of construction.
Materials – Do research and ask contractors about the materials to be used on the extension. Try to use the most energy efficient materials available. These will yield big dividends over the life of the extension. Make sure the insulation is air-tight and that the addition has zero heat loss capability. We supply doors that are environmentally friendly and energy efficient.
Design and Features – List the features and goals your new addition is designed to achieve. Important considerations are:
Windows – There is a lot to learn about contemporary window options. New windows offer a variety of different glazes, thicknesses and thermal qualities. Windows affect the enjoyment of the room from both the inside and the outside. Your window selections are important because they will also impact the value of your home.
Exterior doors – You can choose a traditional entry, sliding glass doors, sliding glass door combos or French doors. Obviously these all have different effects on your budget. Most additions strive to create the impression of openness. Glass doors are great for letting the light in and bringing the outside into the room. Our bifold doors come in a wide range of options, colours, sizes; we’re sure you will find a door to suit your extension’s needs, whilst being cost effective and attractive.
Roof – Sloping, angled ceilings and roofs are always popular and create the feeling of space. High ceilings with flat or flatter roofs are in demand. If you add a sloping roof, you may find it is time to replace your existing shingling.
Flooring – In short, your choices are carpets, wood, laminates, tiles or stone.
Exterior finish – The exterior design and exterior finish are important for value and appearance. Will you match the existing exterior or will you go with something new? You have a surprising number of options.
Paint – There are many different grades and types of exterior and interior paints. Try to choose something sustainable and environmentally friendly, where possible.
Point of attachment –How the extension is attached and entered from the inside and outside of the house is a very major consideration. A popular choice is folding doors that have high insulation values but make flow from the existing home to the extension natural and comfortable.
If you’re planning a new extension, you have a lot to consider; we hope these tips help!