Sunday, February 16, 2020

Addition or New Custom Home

Should I add an addition or additions and renovate my home or should I tear it down and build a brand new custom home where the old one once was?

This is a question that I get asked a lot by people, especially these days with the real estate market being so tight and it becoming harder and harder to find homes/chalets/cottages. In our area we also have people deciding to retire and move permanently to the area, they have to decide if they can live in their chalet/cottage and can they make it a proper home which usually means making significant changes to it.

What this really comes down too is a matter of money.

If you can afford to build yourself a new custom home then you should do it, adding an addition to it and renovating the rest of the place should be a last resort.

Why should it be a last resort? Well if you remove the matter of money, then what you need to focus on is what you are giving up by just adding an addition;

  • An addition is never as much space as you want it too be. There are many reasons for this but the main one is that you are adding more square footage to a side or sides of your current home, that basically creates two living spaces, the new addition and the old home.
  • Usually when people are adding to their existing home its an older home. Older homes are a lot different in layout and the way that they used space then modern homes. Older homes are cut up with individual rooms, this makes the space harder to use and also makes the home feel smaller. Modern homes are more open with as little walls separating the rooms as possible. This gives the feeling of more space and also allows a space to be more of a flex space.
  • Older homes require extensive renovations to be brought up to an energy efficiency when comparing them to newer homes. 
  • No matter how you tie the new addition to the old home and rearrange the inside living space its hard to make the new addition blend in to the old home, it will never look like one continuous home, it will look like a house that had an addition added to it.
  • So things in an older home are not easy to upgrade or re-furbish. Waterproofing around the outside of the home is one, to replace the waterproofing you are basically digging up the entire yard around the home.
No matter what you want to do it all does come back to money.

Renovating and adding an addition will always be cheaper then tearing it down and building a new custom home, but the the costs need to be put into context.

In today's real estate market a new home is going to be worth more money then an older home that had an addition added to it.

The renovation/addition is cheaper but is still expensive, you sacrifice a lot to save money and not as much as you think.

New custom homes are exactly what you want, in fact the new home could be smaller square footage wise but have more usable space inside. The smaller new home brings the price difference closer to the costs of renovation/additions with the added benefits that it is a modern new home.

Whatever you decide reno/addition or new custom home remember that its a lot of money not to get exactly what you want.

Rob Abbott
Great Lakes Custom Homes Inc.