Property in the United Kingdom is expensive and in limited supply. Of nowhere is this axiom more true than of the South East – especially Buckingham. Growing numbers of businesses and families have responded to this by remodelling their current premises rather than face the expense of the property market. This is a practical solution for many people, but it has its pitfalls. In this guide, we set out five considerations.
1. Is Your Property Suitable for Remodelling or Extension?
Your first step should be to engage professional services such as those offered by a Buckingham chartered architect to inspect your property and identify any idiosyncrasies and planning issues which may prevent extension. They will quickly provide an outline of what can be achieved, and you can make an informed decision on whether extending is a realistic proposition.
2. Cost the Project
The next task is to produce a detailed and realistic estimate of costs. This will include professional fees, labourers’ costs and materials. Unless you have a specialist trade, you should take care not to over-estimate the volume of work you personally can undertake. Can you afford the project and get the necessary funding?
3. How Will Extending Affect the Value of the Property?
An estate agent will advise you of conditions in the local market. If your property is currently valued at, say, £300,000 and the extension will cost £50,000, will you recoup £350,000 as a bare minimum should you later choose to sell? While some property owners will be satisfied with breaking even, some will require at least some profit.
4. What’s Your Motivation?
You need to think through your reasons for extending. Is your family expanding or are you welcoming grandparents or grown-up children into your much-loved home? Or do you view it as more of a project, as in Grand Designs? Both are legitimate reasons, but you do need to consider whether these objectives couldn’t be better accomplished in a new property. A reputable Buckingham chartered architect such as Ragozzino will help you make this decision.
5. Can You Cope with the Inconvenience?
Finally, while extending your home unquestionably bypasses some of the headaches associated with moving house, it does come with some inconveniences, including noise, mess and disruption. Do you think you and your family or business are prepared for this?