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A Guide to Planning a Home Addition

As your family upsizes, so too must your home. Fear not- you don’t need to start shopping for a new house! Instead, you may want to consider a home addition. Planning a home addition can feel like a mammoth task, but the benefits are more than worth it. 

Adding square footage to your current home- or in a specific room- is the best way to get more from the house you love and give your family more space to live and grow. Working with Paragon Builders makes the whole process easier and more enjoyable.

The following guide gives you a step-by-step overview of how home additions work and how to get started with the planning process.

 

Before You Begin

Preparation is key in any home renovation project- especially if you are planning to expand your property’s footprint. Before you get the ball rolling, it is vital to check the following details.

  • Look into what planning permission is required. You may not need it if you are expanding a room within the property, but you most likely do if you will be adding square footage.
  • Check what zoning restrictions apply – a.k.a. property lines and underground utilities. You can get this information from the zoning department in your local area.
  • Set your priorities. Know what things are must-have non-negotiables and what parts of your wish list you are willing to compromise on.
  • Know your budget. There is no point in planning an extension that you can’t realistically afford. Being clear about how much you have to spend before you start planning can help avoid disappointment and issues later in the process.
  • Find a contractor you trust. It helps to bring them on board early in the process to help guide you through the complexities and realities of this type of project. You can contact Paragon Builders for advice and to arrange a free consultation to get things off to a great start.

 

5 Steps to Planning a Home Addition

Once you have your planning permission, zoning, budget, and contractors sorted – the real fun can begin. We should point out that home and room additions are complicated, but the process is rewarding in many ways.

Let’s look at each key step in the home addition planning process at what to consider at each point.

 

1: Start by Identifying the Problem That Needs Solving

Before diving into an addition, determine why you need one and think about how an addition will solve your problems.

Is it storage? Is it privacy? Is it the increased demand for shower time? Whatever it is, that must be the basis of your addition design and blueprint plans. There is no point in adding an addition somewhere that doesn’t work with the plumbing supply if you need an extra bathroom. If you need another bedroom, you probably don’t want it built off the back of the kitchen.

 

2: Design the Layout

It is a little early to pick out paint colors and throw cushions, but now is the time to think about measurements, layout, shape, and building materials. Working closely with a designer as part of your contracting team helps you get this crucial step right and find the optimal solutions for the addition.

Moving walls within the home to add to an existing room might work. Reworking a basement with a new layout could also be a solution. If a home extension is the only option, they can help you design the space based on your priorities, budget, and permissions.

 

3: Get the Approval You Need

Once the design is finalized, you may need to secure approval from the zoning department and homeowners’ association (depending on how significant the changes are). You must get written approval before moving forward with construction to avoid any major roadblocks.

 

4: Think About Logistics

Your contractors will take care of the construction logistics, but you also need to think about the impact the work will have on your living conditions. Depending on the location and scope of the project, it could make it difficult to go about your usual business at home.

Preparing for disturbance is a key step when planning a home addition- especially if you have pets or children. Here are a few of the top things to consider.

  • Do you need to do any packing? You may need to pack up part of your house to clear the way for builders and keep your belongings safe. Make sure you do this before the work begins.
  • Will you have access to essential facilities? Is your kitchen or bathroom going to be accessible, or do you need to make other arrangements?
  • Is pet or childcare required? Having animals and children around when construction work is happening is generally best avoided. Think about times when you need to have them out of the house and make arrangements well in advance.
  • What health hazards might arise? Dust is a pesky little thing that can irritate skin, eyes, and sinuses- and trigger various health conditions. If this is a concern, it might be worth looking at alternative accommodation options- or speaking with your contractor about risk mitigation and protective measures.

 

5: Set Clear Expectations with Your Building Team

Working with a high-quality, trusted contractor like Paragon Builders makes the home addition process far less stressful- but it is still important to have clear, strong communication with the project manager before and during the construction.

Discuss working hours – a.k.a. start and stop times, days off, and lunch breaks. Knowing when to expect builders and when you will have the house to yourself is crucial for both sides. You should also have an idea of what facilities they need access to and when. Will they need access to your bathroom, for example – and if so, how can you both ensure minimal mess and disruption?

Also, talk to the contractor about what to expect regarding mess and safety concerns. Are there certain areas that must be kept clear? Will there be precautions put in place to protect the house from dust? What is the clean-up policy at the end of each day? These are some examples of important questions to ask before things get going.

 

Summary

Overall, planning a home addition is easier when you are well-prepared and work closely with a contractor you trust. Contact Paragon Builders today to learn more about the specialist services provided and what to expect from this type of project.

John Doe
John Doe

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A Guide to Planning a Home Addition

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