Move out vs extensions? Which is cheaper?
Has your family outgrown your home? Do you feel like nobody has enough space, things are cluttered and crowded, and you need a change? Perhaps there’s a new addition to the family, you’re interested in starting a business from home, or your kids are just getting older and taking up more space. Whatever the reason, if your home is feeling squashed, you may be looking for ways to extend that space and make everyone comfortable.
For many, that means making a move. Either renting or buying a new home, or building something bigger to accommodate your family. Of course, buying, selling and building is not without its complications, not to mention the financial aspects. These are decisions that shouldn’t be entered into lightly.
As of July of 2019, the average price to buy a moderate-sized home in the United Kingdom was £ 223,000. That’s no small amount of change for most families. Home prices have risen steadily over a period of the past ten years, with the lowest reported housing prices being around £157,000 in 2009. It plateaued a bit for around five years, seeing a surge in 2013 which continued with a quarterly increase for the next six years. Of course, with international monetary values dwindling due to Covid-19, we may see a downtick in home prices over the next two years, but given market trends over the past decade, it isn’t likely to be much of a downward surge. The price to buy an average-sized home in the UK is likely to hover around the £ 200,000 mark. You also must factor in related costs: saving up for a down payment (or borrowing the funds), the cost of your monthly mortgage payment, interest, moving costs, home repairs, and more. All of these financial aspects of buying a home should be considered.
You’ll likely be selling your previous home, so speaking with a real estate agent to get a realistic idea of what your asking price should be and whether or not you’ll be able to sell and make a profit is also something that needs serious consideration. Obviously, the abovementioned statistics on house prices apply to the home you’re selling as much as one you’re interested in buying.
Extensions vs building a home
Another option you may be considering is building a home. The costs associated with building are somewhat comparable to purchasing a home, but the details, obviously, differ. Things to consider is whether or not you already own land, and if not, how much land you will need to purchase. Land prices can vary drastically, depending on the area (rural vs city, agricultural vs urban), how many hectares you need, environmental factors, zoning and more. Hiring an expert in this field to help you with your land purchase is a must.
Other factors to consider is labor and materials - generally speaking, labor costs alone account for around 40-45% of building costs in the United Kingdom. That’s almost half of your building budget. If you’re building a larger home, a more advanced design, or building in a highly-sought after area, those costs can go up.
Considering these factors, building a home in the UK, based on today’s market, will cost you around £1,750 per square metre, or approximately £160 per square foot. Let’s say that you’re going to build a modest-sized house at around 2,000 square feet. You’re looking at around (160 x 2,000) £320,000. While this is a high estimate, assuming that you’re building in a highly sought after area where land prices and builders are on the pricey side, even if you scale the numbers back to accomodate for cheaper land, labor, etc, you’re still looking at costs not much lower than this.
Now of course, there’s another option - renting a home. Still, renting has its own costs - deposits, moving costs, storage, not to mention that monthly rent that you’re paying to a landlord instead of putting back into your own property. If you’re already a homeowner, it isn’t very likely that you’ll sell said home and start renting again. It seems a counterproductive move if you already own a home that can be modified to be more comfortable and accommodating. Which brings us to the next option.
Extending your home
Have you considered modifying or renovating your current home? More specifically, have you considered building an extension on your home?
Building an extension or converting an existing space is rewarding because you still get that satisfaction of building something that you own, but without all the stress of starting from scratch and the stress that comes with it. Plus, at the end of construction, you’ll have more space and a brand-new area to do with what you will (and added property value to your home as a bonus). More and more people are building onto their homes, adding extensions, and converting spaces to accommodate their family’s growing needs.
An extension is a much cheaper and practical alternative to moving, whether you’re looking at buying/selling, building or even renting. It is a more economical and practical choice by far. The average homeowner can save thousands and thousands of pounds by building on an extension to their existing property rather than moving house.
The possibilities for a home extension are pretty much endless. If you’ve got a garage, you can find creative and functional ways to extend your home into something you love that accommodates your family and gives you the space you need.