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Home Additions Basics

Is now the time for expansion? If you have the space and/or the need, it could be time to consider a home addition. Before you undertake such a project, here are a few things to keep in mind as well as the most common types of home additions built.

First Things First
Ask yourself why you are adding this new wing to your home. Is another family member moving in like an aging parent? Are the kids in college but still living at home and want their own space? Are you looking to increase the enjoyment that you get from your home and/or the home’s value in the long run?

Any of these questions could yield the answers to why you are interested in an addition. When done right, home additions can add not only enjoyment but value to the home. Once you have made the preliminary decisions, look to find a competent and reliable contractor to do the work for you.

What to Consider When Planning Home Additions
    What do you want? – Before presenting your ideas to a contractor, know what you want to accomplish. Look up images in magazines and online. Create an actual scrapbook of your potential choices or a virtual one on a social site like Pinterest. Friends and family can add to your board if they find images they believe you will like.
    Home addition budget – Home additions can be costly. Know what you are willing to spend after you investigate what that particular addition will cost in time, labor and materials. New rooms need more than four new walls and a roof. There is wiring, plumbing and heating and cooling to consider. A professional needs to work with each of these to ensure proper installation.
    Get your permits – Adding a new room means adding square footage to your home. Know where your property lines are so that there are no issues with neighbors. Check with the homeowner’s association to see if there are any prohibitive clauses in the agreement that you signed that will stop an addition from going forward. Many just require prior approval. And, check with the city to see what paperwork is needed to sanction a new construction project on your property.

Types of Home Additions
    Sunroom – This is a really common one. It takes advantage of the sun on certain sides of the home. And, by extending it out from the side of the house with an existing door, you don’t have to worry about installing a new one. Energy efficient windows and ceiling fans can keep the room comfortable year round.
    Bathroom – If your home just didn’t have enough plumbing for you, consider adding another bathroom. Consult a contractor about the best place to put it to connect with the existing pipe system.
    Master suite – If you need another bedroom, why not trade up? This is an opportunity to live out your dream of a bigger room for the homeowners.
    Second floor addition – This may be one of the costliest home additions. Just like a bathroom or master suite, there is the necessity to upgrade the heating and cooling system to handle the additional load. Also, construction needs are more involved especially when a second floor didn’t exist before.

Want to expand your empire? Communicate your wants, set a budget and find a professional who can help your dream come true.

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