preventable home addition mistakesWhen considering constructing an addition to a home, many homeowners worry about making mistakes. Are they picking the right colors? Will the addition be large enough to meet their needs? It’s understandable that these kinds of concerns come up when making such a large investment of time, energy and money in a home. Let’s take a look at how to prevent common home addition mistakes and what to do once they’ve been made.

Common Home Addition Mistakes to Avoid

Here are some of the most common home addition mistakes that are easily avoidable with a little thought:

  • Using cheap materials. Cheap materials are just that – cheap. They’ll quite possibly start failing before the construction loan is paid off.
  • Not building big enough. Virtually nobody has ever said, “I wish I’d built smaller.” Keep that in mind in your planning.
  • Ignoring lighting. Those awesome black cabinets will seem dark and foreboding if the proper lighting isn’t put into play.
  • Being too trendy. Sure, it looks great now, but what will it look like in ten years? Go for a look that’s more timeless to get the most out of the addition.
  • Not anticipating the chaos. Construction will cause serious disruptions to everyday life. There will be noise, dust and inconvenience while it’s going on.
  • Changing mind mid-stream. Everyone has been guilty of it when something just didn’t work out, whether it was paint, windows, cabinets, countertops or flooring.
  • Using narrow hallways, staircases and doorways. People tend to think in terms of finished living space, but furniture and people need to get through those spaces.
  • Not updating electrical. This is a big one! With more gadgets every day, updating electrical service is vital for the addition to be a functional space.
  • Not researching materials and styles. Sure, that new carpet is from recycled soda bottles, but how does it hold up? Will that style really fit with your lifestyle?
  • Ignoring a home’s existing style. An old Victorian doesn’t look right with a modern, glass and steel addition and will stand out like a sore thumb.
  • Hiring the wrong contractor. A good contractor should have experience, a portfolio, references and the appropriate licenses.


How to Deal with Home Addition Mistakes

What if things have gone too far and the mistake has already been purchased? Here are some ideas on how to deal with a mistake once it’s been made:

  • Return it. If it’s a stock item from your local home improvement store, you may be able to return it to the store for a refund, provided that it’s still in like-new condition.
  • Sell it. If it’s a custom item or isn’t returnable, put an ad with a few pictures on Craigslist or similar sites, then use the cash to get what was really wanted.
  • Cover it up. Buy a kit to refinish cabinets or countertops. Use a texturing technique to change a bad paint color or window treatments to disguise the wrong window.
  • Shell out the cash. If it’s too much to deal with, it can be re-done, but plan on paying a premium because more prep work is needed.
  • Live with it. Is it really that bad? If it’s something that can be lived with or blended in with a few decor items, just live with the mistake.


One of the easiest ways to prevent unforeseeable home addition mistakes is by hiring a professional who has been through the design process many, many times. The experience a professional architect brings to the table for your project helps prevent costly mistakes on the job site. At Prime Draft Studio, we understand your concerns and can help prevent these mistakes. Contact us today for more information (201) 303-9584.

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