Extending Your Home? Here Are Some Useful Things To Consider

This article also appears on PropSocial herePropSocial is the 1st Malaysia property site that features honest reviews directly from users.

If you live on landed property, there may come a time when you find that you need some extra space. Perhaps you have children who are growing up and aren’t comfortable sharing rooms anymore, or you need more storage space and want to build a lean-to.

In any case, home extensions are rather different from renovations, and require some careful consideration before commencement. This is to avoid any long term damage to your home and to consider how the extension will affect your lifestyle and your neighbors as well. Here are some essential factors to think about when you want to extend any part of your home:

Is It Legal?

Photo credit: Andrew Wright Windows
Photo credit: Andrew Wright Windows

In order to start any form of extension, you will have to obtain the approval of the local municipal council. In Malaysia, they’re known as Majlis Perbandaran or Majlis Bandaraya.

Once you settle on a blueprint and have engaged a building contractor, you’ll have to submit these blueprints to your local council and they will review it. The plans have to conform to certain standards and requirements before being approved. Different local councils have varying regulations, and this is where your contractor will come in to help you draw up the plans and submit them for administrative approval. Contractors are usually familiar with these local requirements and can help you draw up plans and submit them to the authorities.

Talk To Your Neighbours

Phota credit: Catalyst Services
Photo credit: Catalyst Services

In the spirit of neighborliness, do consult your neighbors on the left, right and to the back and front (if you have them) before starting and the building process might inconvenience them. This step will help maintain your relationship with them, as well help you gauge their opinions about your planned extension. If any objections arise, you can always propose amendments to the plan and attempt to satisfy their requests as much as possible.

Access And Flow

Photo credit: Homebuilding and renovations
Photo credit: Homebuilding and renovations

When planning an extension, it’s important not to block access to any part of the house, and make sure that it’s still easy to move around within the home and outside as well. More importantly, the new structural extension must not interfere with your escape route in case of an emergency, like a fire. Also, you’ll have to consider what space it takes up, and whether your front porch will still be able to fit in the cars you want.

Impact on The Environment

Photo credit: A.H. & Sons Structural Carpentry Ltd
Photo credit: A.H. & Sons Structural Carpentry Ltd

It may not seem important, but any extension will leave some impact on the environment. Consider whether you need to cut down trees in your garden for this, and whether the soil in the area is suitable for building on. The materials you choose for the extension is also important, so you should try to go for materials that are natural, like wood which won’t increase your energy bill, especially when you need to cool it.

Bearing The Cost

coins on white table - money management

It’s always wise to sit down and work out how you’re going to finance the project and what you can afford. Remember that planning out the blueprint and approval from the authorities should be budgeted in as well. It’ highly recommended that you don’t take the easy way out and build without approval, as this may lead to your structure being torn down in the future.

For some useful help in the planning and building of your desired home extension, you can always reach out to any one of our talented and efficient renovators, who will be more than happy to help.

written by Michelle Chee