HOUSE EXTENSIONS - KEY FACTS

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Author
Tom Norris

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JARE Marketing

 

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CHANGE YOUR LIFESTYLE WITH A HOUSE EXTENSION

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Over the past few decades we have seen a huge increase in the number of homes been extended across the UK. It would seem that homeowners are far more prepared to invest money in their property than previous generations which is good for all concerned as house extensions can make a huge contribution to the quality of our lives and in fact play a major part in the way we live.

Take a traditional compartmentalised home and compare it with one that has been extended and opened up to create a modern open-plan living space and it is plain to see that we would in fact have considerably different lifestyles if we lived in each type of property.

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Example: A plain house transformed by a clever extension incorporating modern elements...


In other words a house extension isn’t simply about adding more living space but a mechanism for lifestyle change so it really is important that we get it right if we are to derive the full benefits of a decent home extension..


GOOD EXTENSION DESIGN IS CRUCIAL TO THE SUCCESS OF THE PROJECT

As an architect I’ve met with many homeowners during my career and I can tell you that the number one trait that most  have in common when they are planning on extending their property is that they don’t really have a clue as to what they want. Sure, they all want to add space or have a bigger kitchen but where they fail is that they don’t take into account the consequences or impact that an extension can have on the rest of the property and this can lead to all sorts of issues.

For example, when you add an extension at the back do you take out the rear wall of the house or do you just remove the doors and windows and use the openings for access to the new extension? Surprisingly, thousands of homeowners do just that which effectively means they just added a box on to the rear of their property without any real attempt to integrate the extension or to improve the internal layout of the property.

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Example: A poorly designed extension on a period property. Think about how dark the living space is inside this house...

Had they in fact added an extension with a bit more glass, removed the rear house wall and integrated the extension onto the main building they would have achieved a substantially better outcome that would have resulted in a far more desirable modern living space at little or no additional cost.

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Example: A well designed modern extension that is bright and airy and integrates well both internally and externally...

Think bigger and when considering any kind of house extension give serious consideration to the overall layout as adding an extension usually presents opportunities to create far more desirable living spaces that don’t have to break the bank.


DON’T LET THE BUILDER DESIGN YOUR EXTENSION

Many builders are more than capable of designing an extension. After all, if you can build one it shouldn’t be too hard to design one... right?

Sadly not, as getting the builder to design your extension usually means that you get the extension that your builder wants rather than the one you want. After all, a builder can only create what he has experience of and if the only type of extension he has ever built is a traditional brick extension then the odds are that a brick extension is what will be recommended.

Traditionally, extension design reflected the style of the property but in recent years we have seen an increasing mix of new materials, some commercial, being used to create exceptionally beautiful extensions that whilst contrasting externally integrate successfully internally to create incredibly beautiful contemporary living spaces.

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Example: An interesting mix of old and new brought together to create a wonderful modern living space...

Full height, floor to ceiling double glazed panels, aluminium facia, roof lanterns and stylish light fittings are just some of the more modern building materials used with traditional brick, stone and render to create stunning extensions that add far more value than a simple box stuck on the back of your house.

So the lesson is simple, use an architect to design your house extension. He or she may cost you a few bob but at the end of the day a well designed extension will give you a lot more pleasure and add far more value than a box stuck on the back of your house.


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