Modern family life means kitchens need to be multi-functional – they’re a place for cooking, dining, entertaining, (and doing homework at the table) – usually all at the same time! And for this reason, they’re often referred to as the ‘heart of the home’ because they’re generally a hive of activity throughout the day. It is therefore little wonder that having a spacious, well-appointed kitchen is top of so many homeowner’s wishlist.
A clever redesign of the layout is sometimes all it takes to make better use of the space. But in some cases, extending the kitchen can make a world of difference to the look, feel and functionality of the room. The property experts at Revere Contracts have therefore put together a list of top tips to consider when planning and designing your dream kitchen extension.
Sort your budget
Before you get carried away searching Pinterest and flicking through interiors magazines, it’s sensible to set your budget. The cost of a kitchen extension will vary depending on a number of factors such as how complex the build will be, whether it’s a single or double-storey extension to the side or rear of the property, and the quality of the finish for example.
In addition, you’ll have to factor in architects’ fees, insurance, Building Regulations and planning fees, and possibly Party Wall Agreements. Then of course there is the cost of the units and appliances, as well as the installation fees. Plus, it’s always a good idea to factor in a contingency fund to cover anything unforeseen.
How you choose to fund the project is entirely up to you – re-mortgage your home, use savings, a credit card, a loan, or a combination of these options.
Make sure the figures add up
In some cases, a small 1m extension could provide just enough room to reconfigure the layout of your existing kitchen and enable you to make better use of the space. For those with bigger ideas, you could opt for a large expansion that spans the full width of the house. The important thing, however, is to think carefully about what will give you the best usability as well as the best return on investment.
It is vital that any work carried out meets all legal standards and it is therefore essential to obtain the necessary permission. Some building and alterations are acceptable under Permitted Development rights but they must adhere to the following guidelines:
A single-storey extension.
A maximum height of 4m.
Not extend beyond the original rear wall of the house by more than 6m if it is an attached house (eg. a semi-detached or terrace house), or 8m if it is a detached house.
A single-storey with a width of no more than half that of the house.
It is always best to check with your local planning department if you require planning permission. The work will also require Building Regulations approval to ensure design and construction standards are met.
In addition, any building work that affects the boundary walls between your house and your neighbour’s house will need to comply with the Party Wall Act and you will need to serve a Party Wall Notice to adjoining neighbours at least two months before work commences.
Finally, a kitchen extension will also need to meet particular technical standards such as:
Protection against falls and unsafe walls
Electric and gas safety
Plan the lay-out
Think carefully about what you’d like and what you need. Is it open-plan living you crave? Or do you desperately need a separate WC, utility room and boot room? Speak to an architect or expert kitchen designer for ideas of what’s possible.
At this stage, think about where the sunlight falls throughout the day and how you can potentially maximise the natural light with a carefully considered choice of glazing, rooflights, or bi-fold doors to connect to the garden, for example.
Next, think about the additions that will elevate the room to fulfil your design dream – underfloor heating, a kitchen island, a breakfast bar, or integrated appliances for example. Then turn your attention to colour palettes and finishes as you shop for units and tiles.
Get the right company for the job
However big or small the project, it’s essential you employ a company you can trust. They could potentially be in your home for a number of months and you’ll be living with the results for years, so it pays to do some research beforehand.
Here at Revere Contracts, we’ve built a strong reputation for completing many beautiful and multi-functional kitchens to an exceptional standard over the years. You can read testimonials from our happy clients over on our website, or check out our 5-star reviews online such as Bark and Houzz.
To see examples of how Revere Contracts has transformed homes and created dream kitchens, follow us on Facebook, LinkedIn, and Instagram. And if you’d like to embark upon your own kitchen extension project, call us on 0345 241 7010 to arrange a free, no-obligation appointment.