You need the space, perhaps for a growing family, but prefer not to move. Or maybe you want to maximise the value of your property before selling. Either way, extending your property could be the ideal solution.
But before you commission expensive architectural plans and call in the builders, read our expert guide to extending your property.
What are the best ways to extend?
Filling in the side return, converting the loft, and digging out the basement are the three most popular ways to extend a property. But that doesn't mean your house will be a suitable candidate for all of them.
Find out what the neighbours have done. Visit the planning pages of your local borough council's website. And check what regulations apply to your property, including how far you can extend and whether you will need planning permission.
Questions to ask yourself include how will you cope with builders in your house, day in, day out, for months? If you intend to move out for the duration, will you be able to make regular site visits? And how do you feel about dust – in everything?
How much do extensions cost?
Costs vary according to location but you can count on £30,000-£80,000 for a side extension; £50,000-£100,000 for a loft conversion; and £150,000-£500,000 for a basement conversion.
You will also need a contingency fund of around 10% for any problems that might come to light once work starts.
Will an extension add value?
Again, this depends on location. Generally, ground-floor space is the most valuable, so extending into the side return is usually worth doing. Bear in mind current trends, such as opening up the back of the house with sliding doors, bringing the indoor and outdoor space together. 'Living roofs', sown with wild plants and grasses, are also popular.
For more tips and advice, contact Savills Planning.