Strategies For Adding On and Extending Your Home

We’ve all seen the old house in the neighborhood that suddenly sprouts a strange extension or an overpowering new addition to the home, all in the pursuit of creating an increased space.

Additions to old home don’t have to be something that looks really obtuse, though; they can be in sync with the character of the home and the scale of it all too.

If you are studying your home and what already exists, then you can use some common sense principles with your home design, to be able to improve the look of your home, and create additions and extensions that will look good, fit your home, and help the needs of your family and lifestyle.

So with all of that in mind, here are some simple ideas and things to remember when it comes to considering new changes to your home. What will you start with first?

Blend into the background

When it comes to adding something new to the home, then the placement of it really is key.

Adding an addition to your home, and making it blend into the background helps to preserve the original and classic façade of the house. So you’re able to maintain the character of the home and keep it all in context with the look of your neighborhood too (this can be so important if you need planning permission and neighbor’s permission before you build).

Which is why something like metal carports can blend in more than a large or elaborate garage extension; it just blends into the background. In fact, building onto the rear of the home is one of the most common growth patterns for a house.

Study proportions

It doesn’t matter what you are looking to do to your home, you need to look at the proportions of the home; look at the length and width of what you are looking at, and then you can use the dimensions to allow you to maintain and go along with the original proportions of the home.

The new materials that you will be using may differ from the rest of the home, so having the original proportions of the home will help you to avoid any problems later down the line.

If you have an addition to your home, that then ignores the dimensions of the original house, then it will look out of place, and that might be fine with you, but not for potential buyers when it comes to selling the home.

Keep scale subordinate

If you see an extension in someone’s home that really does not fit, then it does stand out.

If you need more space in your home, then you can often only focus on the increase in square footage on the inside of the home, without thinking about the impact that it will have to the outside of the home.

Compared to offices or public buildings, houses are much smaller and as a result, are quite tricky to expand. If you want to have an extension to your home, then a successful addition to the house will be something that can help to keep things to the right scale.

Keep the dimensions smaller and then you will be able to spend your money on the things that will create a smooth and simple transition from the new to old space. If you keep this in mind, then it can help to maintain the character of the original structure.

Respect original details

A new addition to any older home does have the potential to damage some of the original features and materials.

So before you begin making some changes to the home, you need to think about studying the original structure in detail. Make note of the materials that have been used, take measurements of widths, lengths, as well as heights, and all other components of the home like the doors and windows; check materials they are made up of.

As long as you have the details in hand, then you can show a designer and they will be able to help you get it just right. When you think about the materials and finishes, even if they’re not in identical composition, then it can still keep things looking good and like the original.

If you are thinking about adding things onto your home, then it can make such a difference when you can keep things looking similar to the original. It can help as you go on with yourself living there, as well as when it comes to selling your home and moving on.


Jeff Campbell

Jeff Campbell is a husband, father, martial artist, budget-master, Disney-addict, musician, and recovering foodie having spent over 2 decades as a leader for Whole Foods Market. Click to learn more about me

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