Should I Build Up, Down or Outwards?
Thinking of extending your home? If the answer is yes, then you’ll inevitably come to the decision of how to go about your house extensions. Ultimately, you’ve got three options: you can build upwards, adding an extra storey to your home, or outwards, extending with extra ground level rooms, or in some (few) cases, you can build downwards, adding a garage, basement or other space under a house on a sloping block. If you’ve got a basement or under-house garage you could potentially renovate it to add the extra space you need, too.
The most popular option for homeowners undertaking their first house extensions in Brisbane is to build outward. We’re lucky enough to have large blocks of land in many areas of the city, giving homeowners ample room to extend their living spaces outward.
Because the first house extensions undertaken by homeowners are usually designed to extend the space they’ve got, rather than add a lot of extra rooms, it makes sense to build outwards at ground floor level. Another major advantage to building out is the minimal disruption it causes to the existing space compared to a first or second floor renovation.
When an outward house extension takes place, your house extension builders clear and excavate the part of the yard where the addition will sit, before laying foundations and starting with the build. Usually they can cover the open or exposed walls to keep the house secure throughout the build.
Keep in mind that while house extensions in any direction will add value to your house, building out will encroach on the size of your yard, which means you will lose outdoor space, which could potentially affect the overall value to the property.
Building up can take a few forms. You could simply add another storey to a one- or two-storey house, or you might choose to add dormer windows to add extra space and let in more light. Alternatively, if your upstairs space is not as large as your downstairs space, you could expand it to cover the remainder of the ground floor roof – or even set it on top of the garage.
Building up does have limitations, though, as the ground floor foundations have to be strong enough to carry the added weight of a second (or third) storey. You’ll need to hire a building inspector to assess whether the existing structure is strong enough, and if it isn’t, the cost of reinforcing the walls and ground foundations is likely to make the project very costly.
Another disadvantage to building up is the disruption to daily life. While the house extensions are underway, the roof will be removed and you’ll need to find alternative accommodation until the project is completed and recovered.
When weighed against building outwards, the disadvantage of building up your house may not be worth it. However, each house is unique, so it’s worth talking to your house extension builders about it. If you’re looking at undertaking house extensions in Brisbane, contact the friendly house extension builders at Abode Construction to discuss your project.