As your family or your collection of books, DVDs, and other accumulated treasures grows, as you reach a point in your life when you are considering moving house – perhaps your sister and her children, or a cousin – it often becomes clear that your house needs another room, and a home extension becomes necessary.
One of the great advantages of home extensions is that they can add to the look of your house as well as improving its function. Often extensions look visibly different from the rest of the building, but are designed to complement it. The results will greatly enhance the value of your home, and there are a wide assortment of possible extension types, all of which add different things to your life experience.
So what’s the best option for you? Let’s take a look.
Easily the most common of all home extensions, the conservatory extension gives you a light, airy room on the ground floor. It’s not considered a conservatory unless at least half of the wall and three quarters of the roof are glass, while the framework in which they rest is a chance to beautify your house.
As well as being enjoyed by all the family – particularly children – in the sun, the conservatory makes an excellent basis for a greenroom.
Single Story Extension
In order to get one of these you will need to seek planning permission, and will need to be aware of the building codes in your area. Of course, however, they’re a fantastic way to provide more storage or living space, according to your particular needs; a spare room or two, perhaps a second bathroom, or simply storage can be installed in one of these, and their more utilitarian appearance doesn’t have to be a negative.
If it’s not feasible to build onto more ground, then sometimes building over your garage is the way to go. Much the same pros and cons apply as to the single story extension, though plumbing in a second bathroom, washroom, or similar is likely to be trickier and more expensive simply due to the location.
Additional foundations may be required; planning permission will be.
As the name suggests, the idea of the orangery was originally a focused sunroom not unlike a conservatory but in which the heat retained would be enough that citrus fruits could easily be grown. Through the 17th to 19th centuries, they were vastly popular, and even today they can be relied on to give your house both a wonderfully warm place in the sun and a bit of extra class.
However, a word of caution: an orangery is not something to be constructed without the participation of a professional architect.
While this isn’t exactly an extension per se, it is nonetheless in the same basic category, as a loft conversion takes space you already own, and opens it up for use, either as storage or as another living space – most often more living space; a loft conversion is often surprisingly roomy and comfortable, especially once the windows are installed. Building regulations must be followed, but unlike a basement conversion, there’s no need to worry about the damp.
Most people these days leave their cars outdoors rather than use the garage for the purpose it was originally intended for. That being the case, you have to ask whether or not it wouldn’t be worth refurbishing and reworking it into something more useful. Roof design may cause issues, so look to replace the trusses with more standard roof trusses, and consider adding further windows to allow cross ventilation.