6 ways to instantly improve your home addition projectAre you thinking about extending the square footage of your home with an addition?  Home additions add usable space and monetary value to homes.  The most common types of additions include kitchen expansions, bathroom suites, sun rooms and bedroom suites.  Unfortunately, while home additions are a great value, they can make life difficult while they are in progress.  Here are six tips to help you keep your sanity while undergoing a home renovation.

Decide on Your Addition

Every exterior wall can be moved, and second stories can be added onto single story homes.  Discuss and decide on the addition that would provide the most benefit for your family.  For some families, adding a second or third bathroom would make the most difference.  For other families, it might be more beneficial to add a family room with an additional bathroom or a bedroom suite.

Determine Your Budget

Only you know how much you can afford.  Home additions can range from $13,000 to $30,000 or more, depending on the square footage, fixtures and additional details.  You should also decide how you will pay for the home addition.  Do you have the cash, or do you plan on taking out a loan?  If you plan on taking out a loan, get the paperwork started early and decide how much of a monthly payment you can afford in addition to your mortgage payment.  It is also a good idea to find out how the addition will affect your property taxes, utility bills and home insurance.  Can you reasonably afford the increases?

Have Your Home Inspected

What is the condition of your home?  A home inspection can find problems before they are found by your contractor.  Faulty wiring, mold, mildew and pest infestations can increase the cost of your home addition and the time it takes to finish your addition.  If you get an inspection performed prior to your addition, you can budget for the extra materials and labor and even have that work included in your home addition estimate.

Consider Hiring an Architect

Many homeowners choose to call contractors and get price quotes for their home additions.  While contractors can build home additions, it is a good idea to hire an architect before you find a contractor.  An architect can look at the layout of your home and design an addition according to your home’s traffic pattern.  They can match exterior features and design the addition’s roof to match the rest of the home.  They will also take your budget into consideration.  Many architects can create numerous initial drawings that take into consideration a variety of budgets.

Find a Contractor

Homeowners can find contractors by looking through lists of home remodeling contractors on the Internet.  They can find contractors by scouring the BBB website and looking for local contractors with A+ ratings, or they can ask their architect.  Many architects know contractors that can perform the required work at reasonable prices, and this can save time when it comes to finding contractors and soliciting bids.  The architect may even be willing to help you look through your bids to find the best contractor for your money.

Find a Timeframe that Works for You

No matter how well they are planned, home additions are dusty, noisy and disruptive.  Find a time for the home addition that will be least disruptive for your family.  For some families, that might mean taking a two week vacation during the noisiest and messiest parts of the project.  For other families, it might mean waiting until the kids are out of school for the summer so that the parents aren’t trying to get kids to school and extracurricular activities while the house is a mess.

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