House Renovation

Auckland Home Renovations – Budget Ideas

Home Renovations – The Key Part – Knowing your Budget

Before you embark on a house renovation, the most important job you must do is to work out what budget you can afford.  By doing this at the start of the project you will save yourself a lot of time, energy, and possible disappointment. Imagine building up a picture in your mind of a wonderful renovation to your home, getting all excited about the new house only to have your hopes dashed when you talk to an experienced renovation builder who gives you a ball-park estimate twice as high as your funding.

 

It is much better for you, and the renovation builders too, to have a clear idea of what you can afford.

 

Here are some questions we come across when we talk to potential clients about a building budget.

 

How Do I Know What I Can Afford To Build Or Do Within My Budget?

Prices will vary a lot depending on

  • the size of the building
  • the state of the current building
  • the building plot, is it flat or sloping?
  • the grade of renovation materials you want
  • and many more

 

However, CoreLogic, a property information, analytics and services provider, suggest that building in Auckland is in the region of $2300 per sq metre. That means that building a typical new house would cost $445,000.

 

However, they go on to warn of “invisible costs” including:

  • The cost of the land itself
  • Architect or designer fees
  • Council and other regulatory permits
  • Admin costs for sub-division or in-fill
  • Groundwork if it is a sloping section
  • Development costs i.e. getting services to the building which alone can be $60,000.

 

This means you are looking at close to $600,000 before the cost of the land.

 

Talk to your bank or mortgage broker to see if those figures are affordable to you and if they are prepared to lend on the property.

 

Have A Very Clear Idea Of What You Want

One of the biggest causes of costs over-running is clients changing their mind part-way through the build. As a renovation builder, it causes us no-end of problems making changes, but we have to pass on the extra costs to the client. This could be up to an extra 50% on the original cost. To avoid big additional costs, be clear from the outset what you want.

 

We suggest people have two lists:

  • The must-haves
  • The nice to haves if budget allows.

 

With our experience we can advise you on what is feasible and what it is better to cross off.

 

Remember too, that most renovations must have consent from the Council. The approval process can months and any significant changes to the plans can take weeks. To minimise the delays to your house building or home renovation project, have clear, and fixed idea from the start.

 

Be Very Clear On Your Budget

This is a combination of the first two steps.

 

Once you have a reasonably good idea of your budget, plus a clear plan of what you want, then you can hire an architect or designer to convert those into building plans.

 

Ideally we can work through those at the concept stage with you to explain where costs might be saved or what additional costs you might be looking at.

 

These steps save so much time and disappointment, both for us, and for the client. If the client has a more modest budget, then it saves them the significant cost of having useless plans drawn up.

 

Be clear, even ruthless from the start about your building or renovation ambitions.

 

When Should You Involve The Builder?

A builder cannot determine your budget for you. You have to decide that with your financiers.

 

We work out the costs of converting your design into a finished home. That includes, groundworks, consents, labour including sub-contractors, materials, and finishes.

 

If that pricing is significantly above your budget, with our experience we can look at the design and work with your architect to suggest changes so that the finished home will be closer to your budget.

 

However, we can talk to you before you hire an architect to give you a ball-park figure based on your outline and having seen the section we are building on. This will help you and the designer to come up with a design that is within your agreed budget. We are happy to come along to your property to discuss this with you. We can also suggest a suitable architect or draughtsman based on your project type and budget.

How much to budget for house renovations

How much to budget for house renovations

Changes To The Plan During The Build Process

As mentioned before, changes to the plan once the building process has started are costly, on a number of fronts.

 

As a builder, changes during the project are not welcome but in the end we are going to be paid for them so it doesn’t affect us apart from frustration or being late for our next job. But for the client the changes can cost thousands of extra dollars.

 

If the changes are significant like the footprint of the project such as making the rooms bigger or adding an extra room, that means the plans have to be re-drawn and re-submitted to the Council.

 

You will have extra costs such as:-

  • design and drawing fees
  • costs for the Consent
  • additional construction costs- as well as rental and site cost if project has already been started
  • material costs.
  • Re-pricing and administration costs

 

Plus of course, this will add time to the overall project. If you are living in rented accommodation, then you will have extra rent to pay too. That might result in having to renew your lease on the rental property.

 

As stated above, have a clear idea from the start, and don’t make significant deviations from it.

Home renovation budget Dairy Flat

The Quality Of the Finish

This relates to the carpet, fixtures and fittings, appliances, bathroom fit-out, lighting, and even the quality of paint that you want to use or fits within the budget.

 

This is often an aspect that can add a significant over-run to the total project cost. People decide to have a more expensive style of taps, or higher spec appliances in the kitchen or bathroom. Even door handles can add thousands to the original cost.

 

You can easily go from a $60 door handle to one over $250, and remember, you need two handles per door. If you have cupboards, closets as well as room doors, you could easily need 15 doors. That change in door furniture would cost almost $3,000 more.

 

Be clear on the standard of finish you want or can afford, and stick to it.

 

Summing Up Home Renovation Or Building Budgets

The strong message is to have a very clear idea of both budget and expectations from the start, and to not make significant changes to that. Any change will cost you time and a lot of extra money.

 

At Cain Built we are more than happy to discuss your ideas for your build before you approach an architect or designer to help gauge the potential project cost, and make suggestions based on our years of experience in the building industry. This will help you fix those ideas and costs from an early stage.

 

If you want an exploratory chat to discuss our building or renovation project, please call me on 0800 224 628 or if you prefer, you can email me at admin@cainbuilt.co.nz.

 

I look forward to hearing from you.

 

Tim Cain.

Auckland Renovations – Answers To Frequent Questions

House Renovating – Frequently Asked Questions

 

Over the years we have been asked many questions about house renovations. Some of those crop up regularly so here is a list of some of the FAQs we are asked.

House renovations Dairy Flat FAQs

Why renovate?

There are three main reasons people renovate their home:

 

They need more space

More bedrooms – A young couple you may have bought a starter home but with young children, you now need more bedrooms, so you are not sharing a room with your children. Then as the children grow older into their teens, they no longer want to share bedrooms.

Work from home – One of you has a change in career and decides to work from home. A kitchen table or a corner of the living room may not be enough space or allow for quiet time. Maybe you need a design studio or a dedicated office. Renovating your home can add a specialist working area to your home saving you hundreds of dollars a month in office rental.

Older relative coming to live – This is very common as a parent needs more care or simply doesn’t want to live on their own anymore. Renovating to include a granny-flat is a common cause of a bigger renovation project.

Entertainment rooms – Increasingly common is people deciding that they want entertainment areas. This might be a home theatre or a games room. Some people even want a dedicated music listening room.

 

Outdated design or poor standard of repair

Poor layout – The current layout of the house is old and inefficient. Older homes are not open plan, which wastes a lot of usable space. Renovating can free-up a surprising amount of new space which can be arranged as bigger living areas, extra bathrooms, a bigger kitchen, additional bedrooms, and many more ideas.  Older homes will also be inefficient from an energy consumption perspective whether heat loss, water heating, or heating systems. When renovating, you can install the latest energy -efficient systems to reduce your running costs and carbon footprint.

Poor standard of repair – Let’s face it. Not everyone wants to spend their leisure time decorating, installing new appliances or cupboards, or generally maintaining their home. A major home renovation can take care of all those problems, and more. Better still, you get a professional house renovation building company to do all the work for you.

 

Not wanting to move

Many families are very happy in the are they live in and simply do not want to move. They have friends or family close by, or it may be more convenient to get to work. Often it is the place at a preferred school that people don’t want to give up. On top of that, moving to a new house is a lot of work. You must look for a suitable home, give up time by going to lots of viewings or open homes, have emotional stress and setbacks when your offers get out-bid. Then if you are successful, you have to go through the turmoil of sorting and packing your chattels and furniture, moving and then unpacking at the other end. Then you have to make new friends etc. It is easy to see why some people simply prefer to stay where they are and renovate their existing home.

 

What should I consider when thinking about renovating?

There are a few key points to consider before a renovation project.

Budget and affordability are key. – Unless it is affordable, then don’t waste time or energy thinking about a renovation.

What do you want from the renovation? – This can be broken down into two lists – the must-haves and the hope-to-haves. By having a clear idea of what you want as a minimum from the renovation, you can determine your budget. Once you have that sorted, then you can look at other ideas like an entertainment room, a bigger kitchen etc. But draw-up those two lists to discuss with an experienced renovation builder like Cain Built.

 

Am I over capitalising?

Is it right for the area? – This is a good question to ask and one that needs you to think about selling the home at some stage. For example, if all the houses in your area are two- or three-bedrooms, would someone want to buy a four-bedroom house in that locality? Or would they instead look at the next suburb for a four-bedroom home? The best way to answer this is to call in a real estate agent or better still, a property valuer. They will be able to advise if the renovation project is too big, or if the area is likely to develop along those lines.

House renovations FAQs

Can I live in my house while it’s being renovated?

It depends – The answer depends on the extent of your home renovation project. If walls are being ripped out so there are no bedroom or bathroom privacy, or maybe the kitchen is taken out, then you will most likely need to relocate during part of the house renovations. There may be harmful materials like asbestos that needs to be removed so again you won’t be able to live there while that is happening. Sometimes the builder can work in stages so you can move from one room to the next but generally, especially for bigger renovation projects, it is easier, and quicker for the builders to have free access around the house.

 

Can I leave my belongings in my home while renovating?

It depends – Again it depends on the extent of the renovation project. Generally though, it is better to remove as much as possible. This is especially the case if the exterior walls are going to be replaced leaving the home open. Your belongings can also get very dirty with all the dust, mud and other particles on the building site.

How do I know I’m hiring a builder I can trust?

There are two ways to determine this:-

Accreditations – Look for accredited builders. At Cain Built Ltd we are both Licensed Building Practitioners (a government building standard) and an NZCB Certified Builder. For both of these accreditations, we have to undergo regular training and meet nationally approved standards. This also means that we provide a ten-year guarantee plus we have to hold a required insurance cover for public liability.

Testimonials – Ask previous clients or look at testimonials. We have tons of great reviews from very happy clients – please see this page on our website for what our customers have said about our work.

 

How do I get a project started / Where to start?

Talk to a builder – A chat with an experienced builder will give you an idea of what you could achieve within a rough budget. If the renovation still seems a likely project, then you need to work out your budget and talk to a designer or architect.

 

What type of work requires Council consent?

These projects will or may need Council consent:

  • Relocating a building
  • Recladding
  • Retaining walls
  • Altering an existing building
  • Extensions and additions
  • Deck
  • Porch or veranda

 

Who will take care of securing Council consents?

If the renovation does require council approval the Architect or Draughtsman typically takes care of submitting the plans to Council and getting them to the stage that they are ready for construction to begin.

 

How long will the consent process take?

Council has 20 working days to process the building consent application during which time further

information may be requested; if further information is requested the clock is stopped.

The reality is it often can take longer than this for a ’building consent’ to come through.

Should you project require ‘resource consent’ also this can draw out the planning stage of the process significantly, some have been known to take a year or more due to the number of specialist consultants involved, correspondence between them and council and red tape that can be associated with some building projects or sites.

 

If you later make changes to the plan, you will have to go through the consent process again.

 

What warranties and insurances are in place to protect my building and me?

Contracts – On agreement, we will supply you with a binding contract from the Certified Builders Association, who produce the most up to date contracts in the industry. This will outline our responsibility to you, the extent of work, insurances, time period and payment schedule.

 

We will also provide you with a disclosure statement detailing which sub-contractors will be working on your project, a written warranty on the building products being used and details of our insurance. We will also include a timeline and completion date.

 

Insurance – We carry Public Liability and workmanship Insurance.

 

Guarantee – We offer the most comprehensive guarantee in the industry. The Halo ten-year guarantee covers loss of deposit, non-completion cover, alternative accommodation due to errors, as well as building and material guarantees.

 

In addition, we are Accredited New Zealand Certified Builders (NZCB) which means we have been thoroughly vetted and licensed.

Coatesville House Renovations Builders – Renovate Or Move?

Why Many House Renovations Are Cheaper Than Selling Your Home And Buying Another

Many homeowners reach a point where they want extra space, a different layout to suit their family, or to accommodate new family members such as an aged parent moving in. There are many reasons wanting more or different space but whatever the cause this creates one of two choices; to move to a new home or to renovate their existing home.

There is no right or wrong answer but there are periods where people either prefer to renovate their existing house or sell their home and buy a new one. There are several reasons why renovating the home you already have is a much better investment than selling and buying another. Here are some key reasons why you might choose to renovate and some of the most cost-effective remodeling jobs you can do.

Coatesville renovations builders

Selling A Home Is Expensive On Many Levels

With the high price of houses in Auckland these days, the costs of selling one and buying another has risen as well. According to REINZ,  the median house price in Auckland is $850,000. For that you can expect to pay about $33,000 just for the real estate commission alone. Add to that mortgage costs, legal fees, valuations, LIM costs, removals, and you can be looking at $45,000 – all of which is dead money and doesn’t provide an asset value.

On top of that there is a huge amount of time spent going to open homes, the mental anguish of deciding which house you like, worrying about making an offer at the right price, and then having to do it all again when you miss out on your dream home – not to mention the laborious packing and moving process if you do end up selling.

There is a Better Way – Home Renovations in Coatesville

Instead of wasting your money on all those commissions and fees, plus all the wasted time in finding a house to move to, you can invest in your existing home by renovating it.

There are plenty of smaller renovations that you can do which can make a significant difference to your home, such as DIY-type projects ranging from decorating and landscaping, to new bathroom cabinets and these are well within the capability of a good handyman or a DIYer. However, they don’t make a significant difference to the overall usefulness or usage of space in your house. For this you will need to talk to a draughtsman or architect, and a local Coatesville renovation builder.

Why Go The House Renovation Route?

We have all heard horror stories of bad builders doing poor work, being well behind schedule or charging way over the original building quotation. But it’s important to remember that not all builders are like that. In fact, that type of builder is rare these days, so don’t be concerned about thinking of renovating your home. The chances are much higher that you will have a great result.

Which brings us back to the question, “Why go the renovation route?”

There are many reasons, but for some people, one of the key reasons is that you are not spending dead money. Everything you spend on renovating your home will be directly invested into he increased value of your property. From the cost of the draughtsman’s or architect’s plans, to getting Council consent, to the builder and materials, all of those are investments in your home.

Coatesville renovations buildersOther Big Reasons To Choose Home Renovations

Many of the reasons to decide to hire a Coatesville house renovations builder are emotionally driven rather than a logical, numbers-driven analysis. For example, lots of families simply love their home. A home often has strong family ties where the children were born and raised, it may be a dream location, or whatever the reasons, people just want to stay in their house. Yet they still want more space or to be able to utilise that space better. In this case, renovating your Coatesville home can make this work for you.

In the short-term there will be disruption, mess, and inconvenience. All building sites are like that.  But as the saying goes, “You can’t make an omelette without breaking an egg.”

Finding a good school or even getting into the school zone of your choice can be prohibitively expensive. And while children might complain about going to school, if they are settled have good friends and are doing well, it can be a huge wrench for you and then children, to uproot them to move to a new school. This is one of the biggest reasons that people choose to stay in their current home and renovate it to meet their new needs instead of moving home.

How We Work As A Coatesville Home Renovations Builder

At Cain Built, we have worked with many families on home renovations in Coatesville. One of the first things we ask is what does a family want to achieve with a home renovation? Is it more space, better space, accommodating new family members, or simply making their home look more modern? Whatever the desire, we can help make it happen for you.

After our initial meeting and discussion, we can give you a ball-park estimate to see if it is within your budget before you commit too much in expense. After that we know numerous good draughtsman and architects who we can introduce to you who will extract your end goal, and convert that to working drawings for submission to the Council.

Once consent is given, we will firm up the pricing for you so you can talk to your bank about financing your home renovations build. We will also give you a building schedule so you can plan how you want to live while the renovations project is being carried out.

Some families are happy to live in the home among the building work while others move out to family or rent for the duration of the renovations, depending on the scale and duration of the project.

Summary

Cost is not always about money. Lots of families have strong ties to their existing home but still want to renovate it for more space or to modernise it. If you and your family are emotionally attached to where you currently live but want to get more utility from your home, please call us on 0800 224 628 or email at admin@cainbuilt.co.nz, we’d be happy to talk to you about your options.

Coatesville Renovations Builder – What Do Major Home Renovations Entail?

What Do Major Home Renovations Entail?

For people wanting to undertake a major home renovation, this might be to upgrade their existing home or because they have bought a run-down or older house that they want to renovate. If you have never renovated a home before, you might be wondering what major home renovations entail. Is it a project that you can handle yourself, or do you need to hire a builder for major renovations? These are some of the things you can expect.

Getting The Plans

First of all, what is your desired outcome from the renovation? For any major home renovation you will need to have some plans drafted to consider how these new spaces could look, how they could change the overall appearance and flow of your home and also to figure out which improvements actually fit within your available budget. A good architect or an experienced draughtsman will sit down with you and discuss your requirements and budget. They will ask a range of questions about your lifestyle, the family members (teenagers will have different needs from young school children for example) and the anticipated use of the areas you are looking to renovate. All of these will have an impact on how they design your renovation project.

Using their experience, they will also have insights or ideas that you may not have considered. They might suggest a different configuration of the layout or a different orientation to capture more natural light and warmth.

They will also have an understanding of the shape and slope of the land that you will be building on.  This will have a significant effect on the costs of the building project also.

Once they have your input, they can then go away and draw up a sketch design and layout for you to then review, giving you the chance to either accept the design or for you to suggest changes. Once you agree on the design, they will then make the final drawings.

Once the plans have been submitted to Council, it is important that you do not make any changes to these since they are critical for Council Consent – see below. A renovations builder can use these to produce an estimate, though any later variations from the design will undoubtedly affect the construction costs, usually upwards, as well as potentially causing delays, so be absolutely sure that the design is what you want before the draughtsman or architect makes the final drawings.

Council Consent

It is essential to get approval for your building project from the local Council before you begin any major renovations. This might be Resource or Planning Consent, or both. Getting the Auckland Council Consent is a complex process and people are advised to seek professional help with the process. We can point you in the right direction here if you need help with your application.

As part of the consent process you will need to supply the drawings of the final design produced by a qualified architect or draughtsman to accompany your application. Any major variations from the design might need to go back for further approval – causing delays in your project.

Getting consent is vital as the Council has a range of powers to slow or halt building if the consent is not granted. Often renovation building companies will not quote a project without Council Consent first being granted, as it could easily be a waste of their time. It is not uncommon for Council to request changes to the plans as part of their peer reviewing processes for engineering and design.

During and after the renovations process, you will need inspections from the Council. At the end you will get the final sign-off, called Producer Statements (PS). Not only are these important to show that the Council has approved the completion of your work, but if you do not have the appropriate consents, you will not be able to get insurance cover.

Further, you will also find it very difficult to sell your home without the relevant Code of Compliance or PS. Banks and lenders are increasingly looking for reasons to not give a loan or mortgage. The absence of Code of Compliance documents will be all that is needed.

Major Renovations For The Whole House

It is not just updating your kitchen and bathrooms – a major renovation often includes multiple spaces of a house.

These days people tend to want to have a big open-plan living area. So it is common for us to work on major renovations in Coatesville that include the kitchen, lounge, dining room, and hallway for example. With our major renovations building experience we can help create much more living space in a house by removing walls to reconfigure the layout, giving views across the garden or creating much brighter internal living spaces.

Other major renovation projects can include adding an upper-storey or perhaps building out over a garage to add bedrooms or an office. Adding a granny-flat is another popular addition, which can often be part-funded by the parent selling their home, or rented out to gain extra income.

Major Renovation Projects Can Involve Indoor And Outdoor Upgrades

Upgrades and big renovations don’t need to be exclusively focused on a home’s interior. The exterior of a home can also be part of the renovations. If you have created a wonderful open-plan living area, lots of people choose to carry that outside by having a new deck, patio, or outdoor living area built. This way, you can extend the theme throughout your home, creating a steady flow of colour and style.

Another advantage in having major renovations in your garden at the same time as the indoor renovation building work, is that you only have one time of disruption. You might as well “get it over with.” The building company is on-site so they can build the deck or patio for you. The Project Manager can work with the other trades companies for landscaping or outdoors electrics for example.

If people put off the idea of renovating their garden or outdoor living area, they will find it harder to get the enthusiasm at a later date so we always recommend having the indoor and outdoor renovations done at the same time if your budget can handle it.

Major renovations builder CoatesvilleThe Costs Of Home Renovations Can Vary Wildly

One of the first things that most people want to know about home renovations is how much they cost. Unfortunately, there isn’t necessarily an easy answer to this question. There are many things that impact the total cost of home renovations.

Upgrading a small home is generally going to be cheaper than improving a larger home unless expansions are involved. Some homes may not need extensive renovation work, but other properties are going to need significant upgrades.

One of the best options for you is to call in an experienced home renovations builder to talk through your ideas. They can then give you a ball-park figure so you can see if that fits with your budget or your valuation for a renovated house in the area.

These days with the quickly changing costs of renovation building work in Coatesville, in fact throughout New Zealand, your own estimate is likely to be some way of the mark. Don’t leave it to chance and start a project that you cannot afford.

Summing Up

In short, there are many ways of renovating your home to create more space, light, or add value. If you have some thoughts about a major home renovation in Coatesville, and would like some advice, please call us on 0800 224 628 or email at admin@cainbuilt.co.nz, we’d be happy to talk to you about your options.

 

 

 

 

East Coast Bay Home Extensions Builder – Some Thoughts

Five Reasons You Should Consider Having A Home Extension Built

As a homeowner, one of your biggest concerns may be the lack of enough space. Even if you think you have plenty of space at the moment, at some point, you may decide that you need some extra room in your home. Moving to a bigger house is always an option, but the hassle of relocating isn’t everyone’s cup of tea. Exploring the option of building a home extension is definitely another option you ought to consider since it gives you more control over the final result.

Further, there is more to home extensions than just having more space. If you do not have to relocate for a job, extending your home offers numerous other benefits too that are worth considering.

Building A Home Extension Saves You Time And Money

The implications of purchasing and moving to a new home cannot be overlooked. The process of assessing, viewing and bidding on a home is expensive and emotionally draining. There is also no guarantee that you will be able to buy a house that you like if someone outbids you. In addition, there are significant costs associated with moving too; legal fees, real estate commissions, and the removal company. That is all on top of the time and expense looking for a house.

Building a home extension is not a stroll in the park but for many families, it is much less disruptive as you do not have to relocate. For example, you do not have to find new schools and get the children settled in to those, which is another emotional drain.

Building a house extension is not a cheap option but at least the outlay is going into your asset rather than commissions to service providers.

It Adds Value To Your Home

It goes without saying that a home extension raises the value of your property. Increasing the value of a home is not usually a driver for people who decide to have a home extension built. It is usually the need for more space as youngsters become teenagers, or an elderly parent wants to move in with you.

Nonetheless, a well-designed and constructed house extension will add value to your home. However, seek advice from architects, local real estate agents, or experienced house extension building companies regarding over-capitalising your home. For example, if you make your house into a five or six-bedroom home but all the others in your street are four bedrooms, then it might be difficult to sell a house that big in your neighbourhood.

It would be prudent to consult one or more of the above experts before you go too far down the track.

An Extension Can Adapt Your Home To Your Changing Lifestyle

A home extension helps you gain the much-needed space to suit your family’s lifestyle. You may need the extra space to accommodate extra family members, or the desires of your family might change. When children are small they often share a bedroom no problem, but as they grow older they may want their own space.

Another example is if you decide to work from home. You may want an office or studio, depending what you do. Or you may decide to create an open-plan living area which you can extend out into the garden to add even more living space.

Whatever your family’s wants or needs might be, the extra space you gain from having a home extension built will allow the installation of extra facilities and resources to ensure that your home adapts to your new lifestyle.

A New Home Extension Can Change Your Home’s Interior Design

If you are going to have a building company to add a home extension, there will be some disruption for sure, and will probably require remedial decorating where the house extension meets the existing walls. That is an ideal time to have a fuller refit, or redecorate your home. You could even take the opportunity to go all out with your design options.

Extra Facilities Give More Convenience And Family Harmony

Having extra bathrooms or kitchen space is invaluable to any home setting. As a family expands there is more demand on the existing facilities. What family hasn’t had a struggle with the queue for the bathroom on schooldays? A house extension including an extra bathroom brings harmony and efficiency to the running of a home.

If you have extra kitchen and dining space this can help to enhance the relationship between family members. Dinner time used to be when families got together at the end of the day and interacted with each other. But these days it is not as common as it used to be. However, if you have a well-designed, and more conducive dining area, you can bring back those valuable family times.

Self-build Or Hire A Builder For A Home Extension?

Some people may be tempted to build a home extension themselves. The old Kiwi-DIY spirit. But these days it is a much better idea to hire a building company for a home extension.

Some of the main reasons are that for one, people are much busier than they used to be. Life is lived at a faster pace, and spare time is more limited. That means that it will take a lot longer to complete the job if you try it yourself.

Another issue is that the building regulations have changed significantly. Many jobs can only be signed-off by the Council if they are completed by a licensed trade provider.

That leads onto the next big reason; Insurance. Insurance costs have gone up massively in the last two years, and insurance companies are looking for excuses to not take on new risk. But you will only get insurance cover if the work has been given all the Council building consents.

Summing Up

Often the first thought about a cramped housing issue is to look for a new home, but there are other options. One of the best is to hire a building company to build a home extension. This will not only enhance the value of your home, and provide you with the extra facilities that you want, but it will ensure that the home extension will have all the necessary building consents.

If you would like some advice on the possibilities with a home extension, give us a call 0800 224 628.

East Coast Bays Second Storey House Extensions Using Pop-Top Renovations

Why Second Storey House Extensions Using Pop-Top Renovations Are A Great Way To Increase The Space And Value Of Your Home

Second storey extension

For many homeowners who want more living space, moving is not always the best option. Adding to the available space that you already have is often a better choice than selling your house and finding a larger one.  Adding a second storey or pop-top renovation to a home can be a good way to expand the usable space but will need some extensive renovation work.

Four Ways To Build Upwards For More Space

There are four common methods to expand upwards with a home renovation.

Second storey renovations Dairy Flat

Add a second storey to your home

One is to take off the roof, then replace it after the frame for the new storey has been built. This is a good idea if your land space is limited. However, adding a second storey will be more expensive than extending outwards at ground level but sometimes there is no choice.

Another option is to extend the second storey across an existing one-storey structure, like a flat-roof garage for example. This is an easier option but has two main disadvantages. The first is that it means a limited expansion. The second is that it will change the external look of your home and it is not always a visual improvement.

The third method is to have a loft conversion if you have the roof space. However, the floor of your attic was probably designed as a ceiling so it might not be strong enough to support a second storey. This can require some expensive strengthening work.

The fourth option is the one we look in-depth at and that is to add a pop-top or second-storey house renovation. This is where the homeowner decides that they don’t need space across the whole floor but in just a limited area. Rather than adding a full second storey, a pop-top adds a new room or maybe a master bedroom and ensuite.

Which Renovation Type Do I Need?

The key to a successful renovation to increase the usable space in your house is to ask one simple question.

How much space do I need?

If you are going to go through the disruption of a major house renovation, there might be a temptation to think about “going the whole hog” and adding a lot of extra room. For any extension you will need to include:

  • Structural work
  • Roofing
  • Plumbing
  • Electrical
  • A new staircase
  • Decorating
  • Carpeting

But for each additional square metre you add, additional costs can be quite significant. As a ball-park the price can increase by:

  • Basic Quality Extension – $2600 – $3300 per square meter
  • Good Quality Extension $3300 – $4500 per square meter
  • Excellent Quality Extension $4500 upwards.

If you decide you do need a lot more space, then it would be more cost-effective to go for the big renovation at one time rather than adding further rooms a few years later. However, often people don’t fully utilise the extra space they pay for. So it makes a lot of sense to be honest to yourself about the extra space you really need rather than having a grandiose desire.

You also don’t want to over-capitalise in your suburb. For example, if you live in a four-bedroom suburb, then expanding to a six-bedroom house will over-capitalise.

The key is thorough and realistic planning to make the best use of your money.

Adding A Pop-Top – An Effective Solution For Creating More Living Space

Pop top renovation Diary Flat

Add a new living room in your second storey extension

One of the biggest problems people have, especially on an already sub-divided section is the area of their land. Extending outwards is not always possible so if you decide that your family only needs an additional bedroom or maybe a playroom, then a pop-top can be the best way forward.

You are limiting the extra square metreage that you are paying for. This will reduce the roofing costs, the decorating and floor covering. Electrical work will be a lot less, and, depending on the use for the new pop-top space, your plumbing expense could be far lower than with a full storey extension.

An additional visual benefit is that a pop-top roof can be made to look an integral part of the building design. Compare this to squaring off the building by adding a room over a garage. That can look “boxy”, and not very appealing. But a pop-top can make an elegant addition.

Also, if it is going to be a master bedroom suite, which second storey renovation extensions usually are, you will enjoy a bigger and better view from your windows.

How Much Will A Second Storey Pop-Top Extension Cost?

The price of a pop-top extension can have a big variation in price. They can range from $200,000 to $450,000+.

Dairy Flat second storey extensions

Or add a master suite

There are various factors that affect the ultimate price of a second storey renovation to include in your budget. One of the biggest issues will be the choice of materials, especially if you are having a bathroom since prices vary considerably depending on the quality of fittings you choose.

You will need to include planning costs, architectural drawings, Council permits, and of course the renovation builder costs themselves.

Also be aware, that the more changes you make during the pop-top construction process the more expensive the end project will be. It costs a lot more to retro-fit work the builder has already done than to plan it properly to start with.

It also pays to have a contingency in the budget as you will undoubtedly have unplanned costs. Aim to include 10% to 15% of the build cost.

Some Issues To Consider For Adding A Pop-Top Second Storey Renovation

When you are building up rather than building out, you have to take into account a few pointers.

For example, the pop-top will add extra weight to the house. An older home might not be structurally capable of supporting the extra weight so you will need to get an engineer’s report to see if you have to strengthen the lower parts of the house.

You will also need additional scaffolding and shrink-wrap to keep the working space dry. This does mean though that the builders can work through bad weather conditions making your build quicker which offsets the wrapping cost against the labour cost.

The first step in the process is to have detailed plans developed by an architect along with the engineer’s input.

The Best Way Forward To Adding A Pop-top House Extension

The first step is to talk to an experienced License Building Practitioner. They will be able to come out on site to have a general chat about your ideas.

They will be able to say if you need planning permission for example. This will be a lot quicker than asking the Council.

They will also have some good ideas and suggestions based on their experience in doing other pop-top renovations. They can also give you some pointers on the costs of different ideas you might have.

While these are suggestions you will need plans drawn up for the Council to approve and the builder to work from. A good renovations builder will know good designers they can recommend for your project to produce those drawings. This can save you a lot of time and money talking to a number of designers or architects.

A pop-top renovations builder will also be able to give you a ball-park figure for the work you have in mind. This will mean you can see if you can afford the job, or if you need to scale back your intentions.

Whatever your situation, contacting an experienced pop-top renovations builder at the start is your best way forward.

At Cain Built, we have worked on pop-top renovations in various parts of Auckland. If you want a second storey or pop-top renovation in East Coast Bays or other areas of the North Shore, call us on 0800 224 628, or email us at admin@cainbuilt.co.nz. We will gladly come and have a chat with you about your aims for a pop-top renovation.