Property Extensions Are Great but Be Aware Of The Pitfalls

house extension London

house extension London

Local Builder London know the great benefits and value a high quality extension can bring to any property and so do the hundreds of commercial and residential clients we have helped.

Disruption and Accessibility

Highly dependent on the degree of work to take place and type of extension, but prepare for an increase in noise and dust in and around the area of development and ensure this is kept to an acceptable standard. Be prepared for limited access to internal or external areas (e.g.- internal storage space, hallways, gardens, garages or car parking spaces) as the development work takes place. This is often due to health and safety reasons and so the builders can work as effectively as possible with their materials, equipment and transportation. You may want to consider the impact your work has on your neighbours’ land and properties too. Knowing your expected completion date and letting your neighbours may be a good way to manage their expectations.

Work Control

Find yourself a reputable builder/ building company who have proven project management so you don’t find yourself receiving any extra unwanted costs. A thorough breakdown of development steps, material costs and timings at a minimum will help you to prepare for any potential uncertainties. Also make sure your building designs have been approved and passed any needed planning permissions, this will let you know what is feasible and what aligns with the extension ideas you really want.


If your property is a traditional building type, such as a Victorian house for example, the likelihood is that you should expect your extension to be produced with greater energy efficiency in mind. This is due to modern building regulations which generally push for development work to a higher standard than in the past. However consider this along with a balance in design. Those who own older properties like to opt for designs which convey more space or attract more natural light (i.e.- larger windows) which in turn presents additional or counter-productive cost. For example, if you are trying to keep energy usage levels at an optimum level, double glazed windows are needed which are more expensive. Find a balance between energy efficiency, heating required and natural light exposure desired.

Light and Air Distribution

Extensions give you a great chance to allow light to be absorbed into your property but be aware of the angle and projection of the sunlight and its level of reach to areas of the original building the extension is being added to. The airflow should also be considered as the shape of your extension can affect how air moves through your home and heat is retained. Although difficult to prevent, certain design decisions can make your space accentuate every bit of light. Skylights are often a great way to resolve these potential pitfalls or an update of windows of the existing building – although this may mean extra cost the effect could easily outweigh the investment.


Finally be doubly sure of the suitability of your extension. Extensions have many short and long term implications. A poorly developed extension can lead to space usage impracticalities, a more aesthetically pleasing area which sacrifices liveability or vice versa and also even a miniscule or zero return on investment in terms of your property’s monetary value. If you are considering a sale, homes and properties with poorly or half-done development work will be highlighted to the prospective buyer and could serve as a deal breaker. This is the most subjective factor for extension pitfalls but definitely important for you not to lose track of nonetheless.

High quality building companies will ensure that you are not victim to these pitfalls and would have planned all aspects comprehensively in advance. Additionally their level of service and workmanship processes should be flexible around your needs and schedule. Are you ready for this responsibility? What can you really afford in terms of time and money? Who will be affected? How will your extension help? Once you have these questions happily answered and the pitfalls above considered you are ready.

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