Adding a two storey extension

Matthew Charlton's avatar

Matthew Charlton | 11/03/19

A two storey extension is a great way to add more space to your home.  Not only does it provide the opportunity to add a considerable amount of space both upstairs and downstairs it also has the potential to add value to your property.

Where to extend

The type of property and size of the plot will often determine the type and placement of the extension.  Due to the style and proximity to other properties of terraced and semi-detached properties, a rear two storey extension is often the most appropriate.  If the plot size allows, extending a property to the side of the house is a good option as it can then ensure the majority of garden space is retained.

Extension height

Planning rules enforce that the height of the two storey additions ridge and eaves cannot be taller than the existing roof.  If your property already has tall ceilings and roof height this should not pose an issue; however, if your house has low ceilings and roof height this could present a challenge.  If you're faced with this scenario, there are a couple of options available which include integrating a pitched roof space or taking some ceiling height from the upstairs rooms.

Extension footprint

There are limitations of how far a two storey extension can project and how close it can be placed to the boundary.  ‘Sightlines’ need to be considered, this is to prevent loss of light to neighboring properties.

Interior Layout

As with all extensions, careful consideration needs to be given to the new space the property will acquire.  What will the area be used for, how will it flow with the existing property are 2 main areas that need to be confirmed.

Exterior Materials

Depending on the look of the new two-storey extension you may look to match the materials utilised with the existing home.  If this is not possible, contrast materials could be utilised, some of which can be striking and sometimes looked at more favorably by planning departments.

Doors and Windows

Positions, size, and shape of doors and windows are a large part of the home extension.  Opening up the property with use of bi-fold, french or sliding doors is a great way to bring the outside in.

Getting started

Instructing an architect to assist with layout plans and designs is the first step and then gaining planning approval for your extension is the way forward.  Once planning has been granted, engage with a building company who ideally have experience working within your area and type of property.

Next: How to get a self build project underway

Previous: 10 Reasons to Extend your Home

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