By far the best way to add space to your home and really open up your floor plan is to build out a home addition. Nothing else, whether it’s a repurposing of another room, some other kind of renovation, or finishing the basement, can affect a house quite like an addition.
If you’re thinking of going the DIY home addition route, then there’s a lot that you’re going to need to know in order to make this project a successful one. As I’m sure you know already, this won’t be an easy or a short project, but it can be well worth it in the long run if you do it right.
In this article, we’ll go over all of the important things that you’ll be wanting to expect as you build out your home addition.
Know What You Want Beforehand
First and foremost, make sure that you know what you want before you start knocking a single wall out or getting anything approved. As we discussed above briefly, home additions aren’t going to be cheap or easy. Thus, it’s absolutely crucial that you get it right on the first try and don’t have to reverse halfway through because you figured out you really wanted something else.
Make sure that the whole family or whoever else is living in or has ownership of the house is on board with everything. You want this decision to be one approved by everyone who’s going to be affected by it. This will save you a lot of problems and headaches down the road.
If you’re building a house addition, you’re going to need to be digging and excavating around your property to build a foundation for the newest part of your home. When you’re digging, the last thing you want to do is hit some electrical wires, water mains, or gas lines.
Call 811 before you start your project, and they’ll come out to mark where all of these lines and such lie. That way, you can ensure that you avoid any such catastrophe.
Get Things Approved
Depending on the laws of the locality that you live in, you will probably need to get any addition that you built out approved by the city. This is so that your house will adhere to all of the local building codes and zoning laws.
The last thing that you want to happen is to get started building out your home addition only to find that it’s positioned in an invalid way and you have to restart on another side of the house.
Contractors Will Be Needed
Unless you’re a complete pro with years and years of work experience in all parts of building a house, you are going to need contractors at some point even in a DIY home addition.
You may be able to do all of the main things like building out the frame, enclosing the space, etc. without having to call in contractors. But what about when you’re doing the mechanicals? Think about running electrical lines down, setting up plumbing, and creating ventilation for your HVAC system. Then, you have to hook it all up to the existing connections in the house.
None of that is easy and some of it (especially the electrical stuff) can have disastrous consequences if you do it wrong. So how do you avoid that? Hire a contractor that has years of experience doing exactly that type of thing.
Home Value Will Increase
The best part of a DIY home addition is when you realize that the home addition will most likely add value to your home. Now, there’s no guarantee that the increase in home value will be equal to the amount that you spend building the addition. But either way, you should be able to recoup a significant amount of your expenses if you ever decide to sell the house.
The only way to know for sure what the impact of the house addition will be on your house’s overall value is to take to a real estate agent that has a good idea of the value and typical features of homes in your area.
Maintain Curb Appeal
Curb appeal is another very significant part of determining your home’s value. You don’t want to do anything that will significantly detract from your home’s curb appeal for two reasons.
Number one is obvious — the value of your home will decrease. But the second thing is that you’ll no doubt enjoy your home addition less if it turns out making your house look like a bit of an eyesore!
If you’re building a home addition, consider how the additional footprint of the house is going to look from the outside. It’s easy to get caught up in thinking about the inside because that’s where you’re going to spend all your time, but you can’t forget about how it looks from the outside!
Consider HOA Rules
Last but not least, remember to consider whether or not you are in a Homeowners Association. Generally, a lot of HOA’s will have rules surrounding what the process should look like with building out a home addition so that all of the houses in the neighborhood are protected.
There may be a certain time limit within which your project has to be completed. There also may be certain restrictions on what you can build, how much you can impact the outside look of your house, or who you can call in for floor repairs. The only way to know for sure is ask for a copy of your HOA bylaws and study them thoroughly.
A DIY Home Addition Can Be Well Worth It
There you have it — all of the things that you need to know before you begin work on your DIY home addition. Remember that it isn’t just about the destination — enjoy the journey as well as you learn how to build out your house!
For more home improvement advice, be sure to check out the rest of the articles on the website!