Extend my house or buy another?


We always advise clients that when they out grow their house and feel they need more space, the answer is not always to extend. The questions you have to ask yourself is: will the extension provide the additional space that I need long term? Is it better to buy a larger property instead? How much will the extension cost? Sometimes, you don't want to sell as you like the area you live in, and because you are close to family, schools etc. There are many considerations to take into account before deciding on extending.


It also helps to look at the project from a financial point of view:


What your house will sell for £110,000 + the extension cost £50,000 = £160,000. 

Can you buy a house with the space you need for around this price?


How much you paid for your house £40,000 + cost of the extension £50,000 = £90,000. 

If you sell your house will you get at least £90,000 back?


How much will my extension cost?

The cost of your proposed extension depends on a number of things, mainly how large the extension will be,  how much internal work will be required, who will be doing the work. The cost of this can be estimated before design stage, however the actual cost of the extension works will be subject to a detailed quote from a builder. Builders will require a detailed set of plans, specification, and a shedule of work (list of things you want them to include). Typically, an extension will cost approximately £1,000 per square metre.


Do I need permission to extend my home?


For most household extensions you will need permission from your council before starting work. There are two applications for approval that generally need to be made to the council. They are Planning Permission and Building Regulations? Please visit our Do I need permission section for further information on whether you need to apply for both.


In addition to this if your property is leasehold or you are a tenant, you will need consent from your landlord.


How long are my approvals valid for?


Planning  and Building Regulation approvals are valid for 3 years. You have to commence work within this time, and it is not necessary that you have to complete the works in the 3 years.


When can I start building work?


There are a number of things that you have to have in place before starting building work. Are your project finances in place? Have temporary household arrangements been made due to disruption caused by building work? Have your architectural plans etc been prepared? Have you obtained planning permission (6-8 weeks)? Have you obtained building regulation approval (2-5weeks)? Have you obtained at least 3 comparative quotes from builders? Have you applied for moving utility meters (utility companies can take a few weeks)? So the simple answer is that you would need to allow at least a few weeks before starting building works.