What are your thoughts on house extensions? In general, do you recoup the cost of the extension when you resell? I’m not really looking to make money - I just want to make a small house in a fantastic area a little larger for better livability. The extension would increase the size of the living room by less than 40 sq meters, and there would be at least 25 sq meters left in the backyard (though not much more, unfortunately). Do people value larger living rooms? Or larger backyards?
Cheaply done extensions were a turn-off when we were looking. There are a few houses that took the cheap cheap way of adding on an extension and we excluded them straight off. Things like uneven floors, pillars left in strange locations etc. I don’t know what value would be on extra space. Well done I imagine it would add value but I can’t see recouping the cost unless you know tradespeople and get very good deals and value.
Depends what you use the garden for. If it is sunny all you might need is space for a couple of chairs and a table, and somewhere to dry the clothes. If you have small kids, space for a sand table or a trampoline when they get a bit bigger. In Ireland you will be spending more time inside than outside, but if you have large glass doors to the garden you could use both at the same time.
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If you make a house more liveable for you then it will surely be more liveable for someone else.
If you nail on your standard box extension with plastic windows and shaker kitchen then it would, I think, be marginal. You’d prob gain some money but that wouldn’t compensate you for your own effort. If done as part of an overall lifting the house such as to move it from bog standard to something fully sorted and tasty then you certainly will, in my opinion, make more than sufficient to cover the costs and your time. As an occasional house-flipper of not very large houses I’d be looking for something that needs extending as a significant element in the overall gain.
A small house (say 900-1000 sq ft after extension) can do okay with a 25 sq m patio left over. Probably easier if a 2 bed suitable for traderdowners and FTB-ers than a 3 bed in an estate. If there’s somewhere for the kids to play (like a green in the estate) close by then the garden size is less an issue for families. Are you going single or two storey. It’s not a whole lot more per sq ft to go 2 storey. I’d certainly max out the sq ft on a small site. There ain’t no replacement for cubic inches.
Oh, see if you can get the ceiling height up from standard if going single storey. It costs nothing and adds to volumetric space. Not something quoted on ads but something which buyers will value.
We’re thinking of extending but working on the assumption that we won’t recoup the financial cost directly i.e. if we do the job well and then sell the house next year it would have been a terrible idea.
However, if you live in the house for 10 years you will have had the value of the extra living space for that decade, then you’ll sell - maybe at a bit of a loss, maybe not - but overall it will have been worth it. Personally, I might never move again and would like to extend ‘some day’ so it seems sensible just to do it asap.
Thanks for all these insights - very helpful indeed. We are looking at a single story extension, just because it’s a terraced property so a two-story won’t meet the 2m from a boundary rule. But we’re looking to do something nice - high ceilings, lots of glass, vellux windows if possible, etc. We are really just looking to improve living there, not flip the house, but we also don’t want to lose money either. We’ve read estimates of about 1500 euros/sqm - does that sound about right for a single story extension?