Most homeowners think of adding an extra space to their house at some point in their lives. It could be because of a variety of reasons – your growing family needs more space, you want to create a home office, or you just want an extra room for guests.
The go-to solution would be to add a second storey to their house in order to potentially double the living space without having to create a separate structure all together. But a second storey addition takes a lot of time and resources to build which is why you must be sure that you actually need it before you start calling your home designer.
Here are 7 tell-tale signs that can tell you if you need a second storey.
1. You can’t invite your parents or your friends to visit because they won’t have a place to sleep in.
It’s impossible to invite guests from out of town over for a weekend of footie and barbie when you have no spare room to put them in. By adding a second storey addition, you can create an extra space for when you have visitors over.
2. Your living room also doubles as your dining room
Having limited space in your house forces you to repurpose certain parts like using your living room as a dining area. While this set-up works alright, wouldn’t it be nice to have a proper dining room where you and your family can have a nice meal together every night?
A second storey extension would be a great help in decongesting your ground floor. No need to eat from your couch!
3. You have limited land for ground level additions.
Some Sydney properties are not big enough to extend back, forward and/or sideways. What’s a homeowner got to do but add a second storey extension? If you have limited land, it is the best and only option to get more living space.
4. You need more space but have limited budget.
Some properties in Sydney can be expensive to alter, especially the ones made with bricks. It is cheaper to go up than out because extending out the back often requires laying new foundation or concrete piers, etc. A second storey addition means you are doubling the existing floor area that you already have, without spending as much as you would for a first floor extension.
(Note for our American friends: In Australia, first floor extension is the same as a second story additions. The lower floor is called the ground floor so the upper one is called the first floor.)
5. The view is much better from upstairs
Sydney skyline has some lovely views as the city’s hilly topography juxtaposes with skyscrapers and the sea. It would be so nice to have a second storey extension where you can look out and enjoy the views from your own bedroom.
6. You can’t afford to knock down and rebuild your house.
Some people who own old houses think it would be easier to just knock down their existing house and build a new one from scratch. Sure, it’s easier to work with a blank space, but in every home renovation project, budget is always an issue and rebuilding something is always more expensive than adding a floor.
The cost of adding a first floor will typically fall between $1,850 and $3,300 per square metre, but it is still cheaper than knocking down the house and starting from scratch.
7. You want to make a profit when you sell your house.
Smart homeowners know spending money on a second storey could result in a significant increase to the property value, particularly if it means they capture a sought-after view such as a vista of water. You are also essentially doubling your floor plan size, and that usually means boosting your property’s price tag.
But first, you may need to visit your local government zoning office to know if you are permitted to add a second story. In Sydney and most parts of the country, your second storey extension needs to comply with local council regulations and the local neighbourhood plan. Your local council will most likely require a Development Approval (DA), plumbing approval and or a “siting variation” to build within the boundary setbacks of your property may be needed.
If you find yourself nodding your head yes to all the signs listed above, then it’s time to plan a second storey addition to your house. The first thing you need to do is find a home designer who can give you advice on how to get started with your home renovation project. You need an expert who will guide you on renovation issues like local building codes, construction costs, hiring of a trustworthy builder, etc.
Having an expert by your side can make your second storey addition project a much more pleasant experience. If you are contemplating a second storey addition project in northern Sydney, feel free to contact me here.
Related Tags: First Floor Additions Sydney