Extension types

Should you move or extend your home?

In this current economic climate, many people are facing challenges such as high living costs, borrowing costs, construction costs, and an uncertain housing market. As a result, the decision of whether to move or extend one’s current home is far from easy. Unfortunately, there is no one-size-fits-all answer to this dilemma. Instead, it is important to carefully consider your own set of circumstances when weighing the available options. While we cannot provide a definitive solution, we can provide you with some information to assist you in making the right decision.

Ultimately, the choice to move or extend will depend on your individual circumstances and priorities. Seeking guidance from a financial advisor or a property expert may prove beneficial in helping you make the best decision for your situation.


Extension above by Patrick, architect on Design for Me. See his full profile and shortlist his studio for your home project here.


How much does a house extension cost in 2023?

It’s worth considering the cost of a house extension in 2023. Construction costs have recently seen a significant increase, prompting us to update our article, ‘How much does a house extension cost‘.


Add up the costs of moving to a bigger property

When contemplating whether to move or extend, it is essential to calculate the costs associated with moving to a larger property. If you are content with your current area, staying in your house and extending it may make financial sense. However, it is understandable if you feel less enthusiastic about staying where you are. In such cases, consulting with a couple of architects to explore the potential of your current house might be eye-opening. You may be pleasantly surprised by how it can be completely transformed.


Will you want to renovate the new house?

Consider whether you would want to renovate a new house. When renovating your existing home, you have the freedom to choose materials and finishes that suit your taste. It is rare to find a property on the market that wouldn’t require any decoration. Take into account what improvements would be needed in your new house and estimate the cost of redecoration.


Add up the costs of moving to a bigger property

Moving house can be costly, with expenses such as estate agent fees and removal costs adding up. Stamp duty alone can be a considerable expense, and that money could contribute significantly toward the cost of an extension.


If you do extend, how long will you stay?

If you decide to extend, it is important to consider how long you plan to stay in the house. If you are creating your “forever home” through an extension, you can relax a little when it comes to the potential for added value. The improved quality of life it brings will be significant and can save you tens of thousands of pounds in moving costs over your lifetime.

However, if you intend to extend and then move within the next couple of years, it’s a different situation. The housing market in the UK is uncertain in 2023, with many experts predicting a downturn or a flatlining due to current high mortgage rates. Flipping properties for a profit is now a riskier option than it has been in the past.


Planning rules have been relaxed

It’s worth noting that planning rules regarding extensions have been relaxed in recent years, giving homeowners more flexibility to improve and increase the value of their homes under permitted development rights. The changes include allowing a single-storey extension of up to six meters in depth for an attached property and eight meters for a detached house.

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Make sure your extension creates value

Adding extra floorspace to your home will not in in-self maximise the value. You should think about what amenity you are adding to your home. For example, simply adding another bathroom may not increase the value of your house as much as the extension itself costs. On the other hand, adding an extra bedroom is a great way to instantly enhance the property’s value. The increase in value can significant when going from one to two bedrooms, two to three bedrooms, and three to four bedrooms. Beyond four bedrooms, the value of each additional room is usually not as substantial. However, it is important to maintain a balanced house design. A house with four bedrooms should have a living space suitable for the number of occupants.


Consider neutral finishes that have a wide appeal

When it comes to adding value to your property, it is crucial to consider the preferences of the average buyer. A helpful guideline is to ensure that your extension aligns with the architectural style of the existing house. This ensures a cohesive and harmonious look. Additionally, take into account how the extension will seamlessly connect with the rest of the house and how it will impact the overall layout.

To maximise the value added by your extension, it is highly recommended to enlist the expertise of a professional architect or designer. They possess the necessary skills and experience to ensure that your extension complies with planning laws, appeals to potential buyers, integrates well with the existing structure, and, most importantly, optimises your budget.

By collaborating with a professional, you can benefit from their knowledge of design principles and industry best practices, resulting in a well-executed extension that not only enhances the value of your property but also aligns with your goals and vision.


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Emily  Design for Me

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