Planning A Home Addition
Additions. A family has grown, but the house hasn’t. This is a great solution to keep your neighborhood, keep your house, but improve your life. An addition is the most ambitious, complicated and time consuming way to change an existing house, but it also can yield the most dramatic improvements.
How Much Does A Home Addition Cost?
The #1 question we get from people is the ever popular…wait for it… “How much will a home addition cost?” Here are a few sample levels of construction complexity that affect the price:
Level 1: The Attic Conversion -- $175-250 psf
No foundation, but new roof, walls and interior:
- New rooms
- New roof and wall structure
- Existing stairs
- All new interiors
Level 2: Standard Home Addition -- $225-295 psf
The house “footprint” grows, all new:
- Home existing spaces affected
- New foundation, walls and roof
- New interior space
- Usually works for 700 s.f. or more
Level 3: Full Custom Home Addition $295-375 psf
The “footprint” grows, full basement, custom interior work:
- Full basement foundation
- All new walls and roof structure
- Upgraded windows
- Custom interior finish
- May include a kitchen and some baths
- A smaller addition usually means this higher cost psf
Of course, each home addition (and client) is unique, and a personalized budget will be developed for your project during a collaborative design process.
Some of our favorite addition finish products and design elements
- Open floor plan An older house with a broken-up floor plan can be completely transformed by eliminating old load bearing walls
- Moving the stairs Often the stairs up and down have become the “elephant in the room” that everything else has to work around. Moving them can be a lot easier than it seems.
- Full basement Foundations are expensive, but sometimes a nice big chunk of bonus space can be a great move
- Let there be light! Many older homes don’t have enough windows. New additions are a great way to solve that problem if they are designed smartly.
- Insulation New walls are a chance to insulate really well using foam, Spyder or another new product
Home addition problems to avoid
- DIY nightmare That Home Depot commercial makes this seem so easy. We get a lot of calls from people who discover there is more to a bathroom remodel than 30 seconds of an exciting song and Josh Lucas’s sexy voice. If this is something you are considering, call me and I can help walk you through the pitfalls-beforehand.
- Too cheap to be true We find a lot of advertisements out there for cheap bathrooms that hook a lot of people who just don’t know any different. Bathrooms are probably the room in the house where the difference between quality and shoddy is most obvious.
- Foundations matter If something goes wrong on an addition, it likely involves the foundation. Make sure you know how water is getting handled, and how the addition will tie into the existing house.
- Frankenaddition An addition can easily look like it was just slapped onto the side of a house. The goal should be improving the way the entire house works while making it feel like it has always been there. This requires a lot of skill from the architect, but is well worth the investment.