When it comes to home additions and revisions, the possibilities are endless. No matter your style, there are multitudes of products and professionals to make your dreams come true. Of course, with those dreams comes the reality of the project and what it will take to complete it on time and within budget.
If you’re the type who loves to watch home-improvement shows, you’ve probably gone through home magazines, studied advice from your favorite designers, and perhaps even utilized social media in creating the space of your dreams. After all that dreaming and planning, you now have a clear goal, a budget, and maybe even an entire Pinterest board dedicated to the design and decoration of each room. Even with all of that thought brought into it, you’re still not quite ready to start your addition project—until you ask yourself the following questions:
What is your budget?
The limit of your budget is the ultimate determining factor in how much you can get done and what you can realistically accomplish during your renovation. Every homeowner’s wish list is different. Perhaps your addition will include a master suite or an entire kids wing; maybe you just need a new larger kitchen to create the home of your dreams. No matter the desire, your budget needs to be able to handle everything you throw at it.
Figuring out a cost estimate can be done in various ways, but the best way is through conversations with professionals and contractors. Your focus is on the end result, but a contractor will be able to piece together all the materials needed to make what is in your head a reality. So while you might forget about all those nuts and bolts, a professional will be able to take into account the things you can’t see or have knowledge about.
Zoning restrictions and permits
Before any work can begin on a project, homeowners should check with their town to see what rules are in place about construction. Some zoning restrictions won’t allow you to build up. Instead, you may need to build out. Additionally, there are restrictions if you live near wetlands and how much your lot can be covered with materials, which includes structures and paving. These laws can change so it’s important to remain relevant and up to date on what is and isn’t up to code.
Permits are a necessity when it comes to renovations. If you don’t get permits for your project, you could face expensive fines through the town or the state—or even be forced to remove your addition. Things need to be done to code or brought up to code, and that takes a certain expertise that only a professional will be aware of. Another reasoning for permits is complete safety, not only for your project but for yourself. Permits show that you have documentation of your project being done the right way, so if you sell your home at a later date, the new homeowner can’t say that anything was constructed improperly.
How will this addition match your existing home?
Adding to a home can create brand-new spaces, but it will take a bit of tact to ensure that the new addition looks as if it belongs. You don’t want your addition to stick out like a sore thumb. You’ll want to consider the roofline of your home and how it will connect to your new addition. Everything you choose for the addition should complement the style of your home. Through the use of materials, windows, utilities, and heating/cooling, your addition should create a functional space that will provide maximum benefit to your family. All of this can be done through hiring a professional architect or designer that can capture the existing style of your home and marry it with an addition.
Similar to any project, planning is always a good starting place. Plan for things to go right and plan for things to go wrong. Having a contingency for when those problems will arise, because in most cases they will, can save you a big headache later on down the road.