DO make your extension architecturally sympathetic with the existing building.
DO consider future plans. Will you be increasing your family while still in this house, therefore needing more bedroom and living space? Will you move on within the next five years? Will you want to install a pool, in which case, is it better to have it done now, while the house is already in chaos?
DO make thorough plans and lists of priorities. Work them out, rework them, add necessities to them and then subtract non-essentials. Rework them again, until your plans and preferences are clear and understandable for your architect.
DO keep furnishing money aside so you can afford the fun and luxury of fitting out your finished rooms.
DO ask your builder if you can do anything to reduce costs. If you can DIY any of the work, such as painting or offsiding the professionals, you’ll have money to spare for some luxury touches you would not otherwise have been able to include in your renovation.
DON’T start knocking down those walls until you’ve checked regulations with your local council.
DON’T get all your new neighbours offside. Try to be considerate of their opinions when planning your extensions. If their lifestyle will be affected by your changes, you need to accommodate their needs to a reasonable extent.
DON’T get so carried away with your creativity that you overspend and, therefore, overcapitalise on your property.
DON’T forget all those extra expenses. Add a buffer zone to your budget to allow for a blowout in expenses with tradesmen and materials, delays due to weather and unexpected costs. Also, factor in the cost of hotel accommodation if this is necessary during renovation.
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