Most homeowners prefer to extend their homes upwards because they want to create more functional space while creating an elevated view and maximising the footprint of their existing structures. If you are contemplating extending your home by building a second floor over your house, you should be prepared to be confronted with a challenging job. It is not enough for a consulting structural engineer to simply say that your house is strong enough to support the weight of the extra storey, as there are many other important factors you will need to ponder. Here is a look at some of those factors.
Second-floor extensions can be costlier than most people think, and they are generally costlier to build compared to extending out from the ground floor. The existing structure may need to be structurally reinforced so that it can support the weight of the additional floor. Aside from that, the existing roof will have to be removed and re-installed after the walls of the new floor have been erected. In addition, renovation workers will be working at height and will therefore require additional safety equipment such as scaffolding to work safely, which can increase renovation costs.
With that said, it is important to know the financial implications of adding a second storey before you can begin any work. This will call for proper budgeting so that you can know beforehand if you can afford to perform the extension from start to finish.
Availability or lack of alternative accommodation
Because of the safety hazards involved, second-floor extensions cannot be carried out while people are still living inside a house. As you will need to vacate your house during the extension, you must make arrangements for accommodation for your family. You may have to wait until the holidays before you can move your family to pave way for the extension.
Local building regulations
Deciding to add a storey over your house basically means that you will be increasing the height of your structure. In some residential areas, there are local council and homeowners' association regulations that dictate the height that your house must not exceed. Therefore, you will need to find out what height restrictions apply in your local area and what other building design regulations you will be required to comply with.
Talking to a building contractor that specialises in home extensions before embarking on your second floor extension job can help you identify and deal with potential issues that may crop up while work is underway. This will, in turn, help you avoid costly blunders.