Over time, home owners can find that their living space becomes squeezed, especially so with growing families. The two possible solutions to this problem will generally be to extend the property, or to convert existing space within the property to make it better fit the needs of the owners.
But which is the better option and what’s the difference between a conversion and an extension? Of course, there is no easy answer to that, as it will always depend upon the unique circumstances of each property. However, there are differences between converting and extending, and understanding these differences may help you decide which is the best option for you.
Why go for a conversion?
Conversions are all about optimising the existing space within your property. This can mean converting a rarely used storage loft space into a much-needed extra bedroom or a family games room.
Lofts can make for excellent living spaces, with the opportunity to use natural light, and they’ll often provide the best views in the house too. When designed and built to a high technical standard, issues such as rain noise and heat loss will also be addressed.
Garage conversions are also a great way to enhance your property allowing, for instance, a larger open plan family living space or an extra bedroom.
For properties with a small or gloomy garden, a roof conversion to create terrace space can be a fantastic addition; a perfect spot where home owners can enjoy relaxing and entertaining in the fresh air.
For properties with restricted surrounding space, an extension may be unfeasible and certainly unlikely to get planning permission, therefore a conversion may be the only solution for some. Very often a conversion will require only a building warrant and not planning permission.
Additionally, conversions will generally be less expensive than an extension and will take less time too.
Why opt for an extension?
Where the opportunity exists, extensions may be preferred over a conversion.
An extension will increase the size of your property, therefore you won’t face tricky choices, such as whether to sacrifice your garage for an extra bedroom. Also, there are properties where conversion opportunities are limited or simply don’t exist.
Extensions offer greater design possibilities and opportunities than conversions. While with a conversion you’re largely working within existing space, with an extension, you can create a living space of a size and style that’s perfect for you.
Home owners can also explore options as to where to extend their property: upwards or outwards? Front, back or side? Maybe even adding an additional floor? The possibilities can be vast!
Not all extensions will require planning permission, but when they do, architectural consultants should be able to guide you through the process as painlessly as possible.
Exploring your options
Conversions and extensions can really enhance your property; providing more and better space, making your property more attractive and, in doing so, increasing its value. The best option for your property will obviously depend primarily upon your needs and the opportunities available. Keep in mind, however, that the best solutions may not be obvious, and a little creative ‘outside the box’ thinking may uncover interesting possibilities!
If you’d like consultation regarding extension and conversion design ideas for your property then please contact us.