3 Things to Know When Looking to Expand Your Home


Expanding your home is a major renovation that can add functional space and square footage. When considering the idea of expanding your home, there is usually a clearly defined purpose for the new space, but there may be other aspects to the project that you haven’t considered. Before beginning your project, make sure you’ve explored these three need-to-know areas.

Costs: Upfront and Hidden

Adding to a home is a costly project but it can increase the value of your home and give you much-needed functionality that makes it worthwhile. The cost of your addition will vary depending on the size and scope of your renovation.

For instance, adding a small bathroom will cost considerably less than adding an entire floor or wing to your home. Factors like needing to install new plumbing or electricity add to the complexity and cost of the project. Finished spaces that require sheetrock and flooring will be more expensive than areas that can be left unfinished, like a garage addition. Of course, there will be other variables as well, including the cost of the materials chosen for the project and the rate of the contractor.

Beyond upfront costs to complete your addition, there may be other costs to consider for your new space. For example, if the addition will be climate-controlled, it may increase your energy bills. If the area utilizes water, your water bill will also go up. Make sure you account for these recurring costs when putting together your budget.

Another often overlooked cost is the possible increase in property taxes. Tax assessments are primarily based on square footage so any increase will result in your tax bill going up. Your municipality will be aware of your project via the appropriate permits and will likely want to reassess your home when the project is completed.

MyHomeUpgrade.ca offers flexible and affordable financing solutions that are ideal for large renovations like home additions. Financing a project allows the price to be broken into smaller monthly payments so you don’t need to pay a large sum upfront.

Zoning and Building Restrictions

You may have a great plan to add on to your home, but it might not be legal. First and foremost, you should identify your property lines. You may think an area is fair game for building when in reality it belongs to your neighbour.

If you haven’t had a property survey done recently, there are a few places you can check for one. Your mortgage lender may have a copy, as well as the title company you used to purchase your home. If you don’t find one there, your tax assessor’s office may have one on file. As an alternative, you can have your property surveyed at a relatively inexpensive cost to determine your property boundaries.

Local municipalities have rules about what can be built and where. For example, structures may have to be a certain distance from bodies of water. Local zoning laws can be incredibly specific so you should consult with your town’s building department to be sure your addition is feasible.

Your Contractor

For a major home renovation like adding an extension to your home, you will want to invest extra care in selecting the right contractor. Since adding on to your home is a complex project, you will want to make sure that your contractor has experience completing similar renovations. Consider your contractor’s experience in this type of project when comparing quotes. You can gauge this by asking to see examples of previous additions.

Expanding your home is costly and is a project that won’t be completed in a day or two. You want to make sure that the contractor produces quality work that they stand by and are professional to work with. Look for reviews from previous customers in online forums. Note any that may reference dissatisfaction with the quality of work or the attitude of the contractor.

Be sure to also note what type of warranty will apply to your project. Most contractors are happy to repair any issues that emerge for a year or more after completing the job.

Planning your home addition with MyHomeUpgrade.ca will ensure you’re able to get your project going on the right foot from start to finish. After providing you with a free estimate for your renovation, we can connect you with our network of recommended contractors in your area who are all licensed, experienced, and well-reviewed.

Final Thoughts

A home addition adds value and space to your home, but it is important to consider all aspects of the project before moving forward.

While many homeowners budget for the renovation cost of the addition, they don’t factor in hidden costs like increased property taxes and utility bills. Beyond costs, a plan for a home addition can be stopped in its tracks by local zoning laws. It is wise to check with your municipality about your project before moving forward with any plans.

Finally, invest extra time and care into choosing your contractor. An extensive home renovation requires an experienced contractor who has completed renovations of this size and scope. Contact MyHomeUpgrade.ca to access recommended contractors in your area who can help get the job done right for your home addition.

MyHomeUpgrade.ca’s expert advisors can help you plan your home addition and make sure it goes smoothly. Save time and rest assured knowing that you’ve got the pros on your side. Start renovating your home like an expert, today!

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