Tips for Building Extensions

Everyone in the Fielding Family will tell you how lucrative extensions can be. From increasing the capital value of a home to adding rental income. Extensions can expand a property’s potential. 

Over ‘22,400’ extension permissions were granted in 2017-2018, so they are popular with all homeowners. However, it is important that we make sure that our extensions are done properly. We are professionals after all. Recently ‘The Times’ had an article detailing some tips for adding an extension.  

The article starts by detailing the important legal requirements for adding an extension. The current legislature regarding extensions was introduced in May 2013 as a temporary measure. If you don’t know what these are then I recommend getting familiar with them before planning any kind of development. These extension limits have been extended once before but in May 2019 they are due to expire. It is widely regarded that this has been a successful trial for the government and should be extended or made permanent. However, it’s always good to be prepared and if these rules do expire then they will revert back to the laws that were in place prior to 2013. These previous limits are approximately half the size of the current ones and change some other rules including planning permission. So, regarding these possible changes the article adds how to deal with the uncertainty.  

First of all, if you are getting an extension that will finish before this date it may be worth paying to get a lawful development certificate. This can prove that the development was finished before the date and only costs around £200. As you can tell there may be problems for those who have projects that have started but won’t finish before May. However, some leniency will be allowed to these people and they will be dealt with by local authorities on a situation by situation basis.

What if you are planning an extension right now?

It may be best to wait for a couple of months or at least until the situation is clearer. Finally, for those few who will be looking to buy a house with an extension recently built after the date. If the limits do expire it will be important to ask the seller for the lawful development certificate we spoke about earlier.  

An extension should ALWAYS increase the value of a property and an important tip is to make sure you do the maths beforehand. Make sure your cost of development is close to the average for the area the property is in. Any added rooms should be organised and increase the flow through the house. This includes making sure it looks nice. As mentioned in another ‘Times’ article pastel colours are very popular right now. Building a two-story extension can often save some money. This is because the second story already has the groundwork laid out meaning that the whole build will be cheaper per square metre. 

In conclusion extensions are a viable way of getting money out of a property. However, we have to stay vigilant with the legal requirements. This should stay constant but make sure you check in closer to the May 2019 expiry date just in case. We also have to make sure the extension works financially before we even start. To learn how to get the best out of a property using things like extensions come to one of our Free Property Investing Seminars.   


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