It’s important to check the following to make sure you’re kicking off from the right place. There’s no point planning for extensions that aren’t allowed. Here are things you should consider before you start:
Check the regulations
You may find that the decision to extend your home out or up is not yours to freely make, either due to council planning or heritage restrictions or a lack of room in your property. The decision to build up or out may not be yours to make. All extensions require both council approval and a building permit. Check with your local council to see if you will require any other permits.
Meet those regulations: A design professional like an architect or a qualified builder will help you ensure your extension meets local planning regulations.
Remember that many local council regulations state the allowed distance a structure can be from your property boundary and what percentage of land is permitted to be covered by a building, as well as height, and even the exterior look of a property on a street front.
It’s essential to check regulations before you start building; if your extension or renovation is deemed illegal by the council, you could be forced to rip it down.
Consult the experts
Consider using an architect, builder, project manager or building consultant to talk through the possibilities and guide you.
A professional can suggest options you might not have considered, and also guide you on ways to save money if you have a tight budget. For instance, a carport can be cheaper than a garage, while still adding value. A professional can also recommend finishes and fixtures that could potentially lead substantial savings when doing an extension.
Get quotes: Ask plumbers, electricians, roofers, bricklayers, concreters, tilers and anyone else involved for quotes. This will give you a better idea of how to plan your budget. Do you need an engineer? Contacting an engineer to establish the structural possibility of an extension is advisable, especially if you’re thinking of knocking down, or moving walls.
Consider all the options
Renovating is often cheaper than moving to a bigger home.
But depending on the state of your existing home, and what your overall expectations are, there could be several options. Renovating by adding an extension could be more financially viable than knocking down and rebuilding your property from scratch. But it could also be more expensive, depending what you want to do. Speak to professionals on both sides to weigh up your options