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The words ‘home extension’ and ‘affordability’ rarely go hand-in-hand. But that doesn’t mean you have to spend more than you should in order to build the extension of your dreams. Nor does it mean you have to take the “cheap” option, either.
Here are 12 ways to extend your house with an affordable budget and still get the best results.
Have a vision:
Before you approach builders, decide what kind of home extension you want. A new kitchen? Extra bedrooms? A private office? Or another lounge room? Regardless, write down what you desire in you home extension and include any special features that relate specifically to your home.
By doing this, you will know exactly what to ask for when you approach a builder. This will enable them to give you a more accurate price estimate, and you will avoid being enticed into building an extension that is more costly than what you need.
Get a ballpark figure:
Some residential builders offer free site visits and pre-quote budget. Take advantage of this offer by approaching a few builders.
Not only will you determine what the average ballpark figure is, but you’ll also get a clear idea of the different processes and approaches that each builder will take. This can help you choose a builder that meets your individual needs.
Best of all? There’s no obligation to proceed once you get a pre-quote budget. So it’s entirely risk-free to shop around.
Request a FREE, no-obligation pre-quote budget letter from APEX Alterations & Additions today. Contact us now, or call 1300 654 380.
Keep the design simple:
This is another tip on how to extend your house on an affordable budget yet effectively.
Generally speaking, a house extension with curves and a complex layout is more costly to build than an extension with clean lines, and a simple shape. Of course, you don’t have to settle for a boring ‘box’ design. But, by collaborating with your designer and keeping the overall layout simple, this will help reduce both design and building costs.
Consider a second-storey addition:
While not always the case, second-storey additions are often more affordable than building a ground floor extension. Why? Because, when you extend from the ground, you need to lay down more concrete slabs and foundation to support the new extension. But, with a second-storey addition, you simply need to remove the roof and build from there.
Of course, there are many factors that determine which is more expensive. Such as the complexity of the build, quality of materials, labour costs, and – if you need to temporary relocate during construction – the added cost of temporary accommodation.
Order off-the-shelf products:
When it comes to purchasing features like doors, windows, decking, and lighting, stick to standard-size products. Having to order custom-made products can quickly cause your budget to escalate. Plus, choosing off-the-shelf products will save on maintenance costs if you need to repair or replace anything later on.
Make sure the order of deliverables is on time:
In the world of construction, time spent onsite is money out of your pocket. So the last thing you want is days where the builders have nothing to do because certain parts or materials have yet to arrive.
To avoid this problem, make sure your materials are delivered in a manner that lines up with the building timeline. This will help reduce delays, save you money, and ensure the project is consistently on-track from start to end.
For more advice on how to extend your house with an affordable budget – without compromising on quality – contact APEX Alterations & Additions today.
Stick to the same interior + exterior features:
Consistency is a great way to manage your home extension costs. This involves keeping your interior and exterior materials the same, such as paint, carpet, floorboards, doors and windows, cladding, and insulation. In fact, if the house is still relatively new, you may already have some of these materials in storage
The only downside to this approach is, if the house is older, it may be harder for your builder to track down the same materials. At the best, though, they should be able to track down materials and supplies that are similar to what is already there.
Choose a reputable builder with insurance:
Unfortunately, some home extension projects fall through due to unforeseen events. The builder goes out of business, they run off with your money, an environmental hazard is discovered, or an accident occurs onsite.
Although rare, it does happen. So you want to be protected if it happens to you.
For this reason, choose a builder with relevant and current insurance. The most important types of insurance your builder should have are:
- Home Builders Compensation Fund
- Construction Works Insurance
- Public Liability Insurance
- Workers Compensation Insurance
By approaching a builder with this level of cover, you will protect yourself from financial loss and legal liability, resulting in a stress-free building experience.
Ensure you meet all building and local council regulations:
Failure to do so can cause a massive setback in your plans. But what regulations do you need to know about, and how do you find out about them?
First, your builder will head to your local council for more information about the relevant guidelines that may apply to your home addition. In most cases, you will at least need a building permit. This is to ensure the extension is built by a set of standards.
From there, your builder will find out if you need a planning permit. This gives you permission to use your land in a particular way. Depending on the circumstances, you may need both a building AND a planning permit.
Your local builder will advise you on what permits you need, and how your local building regulations apply to your home addition.
Consider using second-hand building materials:
Some people may scoff at the idea of using second-hand materials. But, hang on a minute. Using such materials does not mean they are not safe to use or not structurally sound. It’s simply an effective way to reuse/repurpose perfectly good materials, and give them a second lease on life.
Common materials that can be safely recycled for additional use, include: glass panels, door frames, window frames, paint, carpet, floorboards, bricks, metal, and much more.
Not only will using these materials save you money, but you’ll also be doing your bit for the environment too!
Buy quality furniture and appliances upfront:
This has less to do with the building side of things, and more of what you do with the place afterwards. But, it’s still an important consideration.
When the time comes to furnish your new extension, if you have enough leftover cash, invest in quality furniture and appliances that will last you for longer. This way, you will get more enjoyment out of your purchases, and save money on having to replace them later on down the track.
To make this idea more feasible, consider adding this into your budget. This way, you’ll be able to afford better quality goods once construction is over.
Can you do anything yourself?
Generally speaking, building a home extension should be left to the experts. This will ensure the craftsmanship is of the highest quality, and you will save time and have peace of mind knowing the job is done right.
With that being said, if you’re exceptionally skilled and even licensed in a certain trade – be it painting, bricklaying, roofing, or anything else – then you may be able to utilise your skills to complete some of the extension work.
Keep in mind, for tasks like electrical, plumbing, and construction, you must be fully licensed and ensure the work is up to code. Otherwise, the work itself may be deemed unsafe and even illegal.
If you’re ever unsure about the DIY approach, then let the experts do the hard yards for you.
Considering a new ground floor extension or second-storey addition? For a FREE, onsite visit, contact APEX Alterations & Additions today. Your local experts will show you how we can build a quality extension – on a budget you can afford!