There are three primary ways you can add to a house: by building up, down, or out. But before deciding which route you will take, you should understand the pros and cons of each option. After having an understanding will you then be able to decide whether you should build your home up, down, or out.
Building out is the most popular addition for increasing the square footage of homes. It is also one of the more expensive options. However, since many people like the idea of having a single-story home, it is the most used option. The advantages of building out is that this is the option that least disrupts your living space. Especially if you’re staying at home for the project. Since you’re not supporting the new space over the existing structural framing or foundation, you won’t have to worry about living in a construction zone. You also won’t have to worry about noise from the stairs and traffic upstairs. The disadvantage of building out would be that you would be losing yard space. It also requires more excavation to dig up the yard, which could require a lot of work.
Building up is another great option for increasing the square footage of your home. One of the biggest advantages of building up is that it is one of the least expensive options. It requires less material and labor. Unlike building out, where you’ll have to add concrete, footers, a roof system, fill rock, and do excavation. That will increase the costs by quite a sum. Another positive aspect is that you don’t have to give up your yard. Since you’re not expanding the footprint of the house, you don’t have to worry about zoning restrictions. The disadvantage of building up is that many towns have limits for how high houses can be. So you’ll have to make sure what the restrictions are for your specific location. You would also have to consider stairs, which changes the floor plan significantly.
Building down is the second most affordable option after building up. It’s a great option for adding an extra bedroom, family room, or workroom. But you would have to take into account many factors before deciding to go down, like if your area is prone to flooding. Many homes are not apt for basements because of problems such as having solid rock in the ground. Excavation costs can sometimes be high, so you would have to consider many things before choosing this route.
Will your home have a wider footprint, two stories, or a basement? Figure out which plan makes the most sense for you and your budget. Take the time to compare the pros and cons to then decide which one will work best for your home. Analyze what it is you prioritize in your home, such as if you value your yard space or if you don’t mind walking upstairs all the time. But to put it simply, the best option for people that want to save money would be to build up. The best option for people that live in areas subject to inclement weather is building down. And the best option for people with mobility issues would be to build out.
Every home’s situation is different, so there is not a concrete answer to which option is the best. It all depends on your preferences, situation, and home. We hope this blog helped you get an idea of how you should extend your home. If you want to extend your home’s square footage, give us a call at 858.373.9902 or visit our website to get a free quote.