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The Ultimate Guide to Planning a Home Extension: Key Steps and What to Avoid

Home extension

Planning a home extension can be both an exciting and daunting task. Whether you’re looking to expand your living space, add value to your property, or accommodate a growing family, a well-designed extension can bring countless benefits. However, navigating the maze of planning regulations, choosing materials, and managing timelines can be overwhelming. At Southwood Building, we specialise in turning your home extension dreams into a reality. Here’s a comprehensive guide to help you make informed decisions every step of the way.

Initial Planning

Assessing Your Needs

Before diving into the project, ask yourself why you need the extension. Is it for additional living space, a new kitchen, or perhaps an office? Your goals will dictate the design and budget.


Always start with a clear budget in mind. Factor in the costs of materials, labour, and any unforeseen expenses. It’s advisable to have a contingency fund of around 10-15%.

Feasibility Check

Consult an architect or a planning expert to assess whether your extension plans are feasible given your property’s structure and local planning regulations.

Design and Planning

Architectural Drawings

Based on your needs and budget, get detailed architectural drawings made. This will not only help in getting planning permissions but also serve as a guide for builders.

Planning Permissions

Check with your local council about the planning permissions you may need. This process can take several months, so it’s good to start early.

Choosing Materials

Select materials that are both durable and complement your home’s existing structure. Always opt for quality over cost savings for long-term benefits.

Construction Phase

Hiring the Right Team

Choosing the right team for your extension project is paramount to its success. While it might be tempting to go for individuals who simply bring in ad-hoc subcontractors for bigger jobs, this approach carries risks and uncertainties that could impact the quality and time-lines of your project. An established firm like Southwood Building brings a wealth of experience, a team of skilled craftsmen, and a proven track record to the table. Our workforce is not just a group of subcontractors brought together for a single project; they are a cohesive unit that has worked together on multiple projects. This ensures a level of quality control, consistency, and accountability that ad-hoc teams can’t match.

We have strict quality assurance protocols, ensuring each team member knows their role and delivers to the high standards we set. Our well-orchestrated teams are proficient in managing various aspects of the project, from electrical installations to roofing and interior design, ensuring seamless execution. Our efficient project management means we stick to our timelines and budgets, minimising the financial and emotional stress that comes with home extension projects. Additionally, having a steady team allows us to forecast costs more accurately, offering you better financial planning and less unexpected expenditures.

Our team not only understands the technical aspects of the work but also shares a cohesive vision for the project. This level of coherence is often lacking in ad-hoc teams, leading to incongruous results that can detract from your home’s value and aesthetic. Choosing an established firm like Southwood Building ensures that your home extension project is in competent hands, from start to finish.


Home extensions are a substantial investment, but with meticulous planning and a competent team, your project can be executed smoothly. At Southwood Building, we offer a range of services from extensions to loft conversions, garden buildings, and more. Contact us today to discuss your home extension needs and get a customised solution tailored just for you.

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