You've decided you want an extension and you want it now but have you thought about it and planned it correctly. The better planned the whole process the smoother it will be.
- It has to get worse before it gets better - The build will involve mess and dust, digging and materials outside and walls being removed, made good and dust inside. Have you considered where any furntiure in the way will go whilst the build is taking place. If you are taking a kitchen out have you considered how you will cook for the days you have no appliances. If you are taking a bathroom out have you considred where you will shower and bath and how long there may not be a plumbed wc available for. If you have children is it worth them moving in with family or friends for the most desruption few days of the build or it is possible to take a holiday and leave the builders to it.
- Budget - Has the build from the very start to the very end been priced and budgeted for. Remember to include for skips and muck removal, do you have a contingency for those unforseen essentials, have you costed the finishing and decorating and decoration to the adjoining part of the house. Check exactly what your builder has included for and importantly what they haven't included for. Can you save money by providing the building materials yourself and setting up an account with a local builders merchant who will agree to price match. Does your build expectation match your build budget.
- Purpose - You may have decided you have room to extend but have you decided what that new space will be, an extension to the kitchen, an extra bedroom, a study, a snug. Don't just build a space without considering it's use, imagine you and your family using the room, how much natural light will it need, how many electrical points, any access from outside.
- Architects, Planning, Neighbours - Consider if your extension will require planning permission, will it impact on your neighbours in any way, call round to discuss it with them before you do anything, you need them on your side. Do you share a party wall, will you be obstructing their right to light, will you need to enter their property during the build. Will your extenion require and Architect to design and draw plans.
- Who will build it - Do you know any builders, will you go out to tender to at least three builders and compare their prices, have neighbours had any building work done recently and would they recommend their builder to you. If you don't have any contacts ensure you ask your potential builder for references and follow them up. Don't be affraid to knock on doors of people who have had building work carrried out and ask about their builder.
- Plan - Plan as much as possible and ensure all possibilities have been thought about, prevent the problems before they happen. Plan the programm for the build, plan the budget and plan the impact on your day to day life for the duration.
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