January is often a time of year when people start to think about possible home renovations and extensions. The wintry weather means you’re inside more and having all the family around over the holidays might have highlighted those niggling issues you’ve tried to ignore. With kitchen extensions sure to be a hot topic here at KDCUK this month, we thought we’d follow our recent kitchen extension design tips with a look at what else you need to consider before you spend any money on expanding your space.
It’s important to be realistic from the outset about what a kitchen extension will involve. Cost-wise, a basic extension will come in at, on average, around £1,800 to £2,600 per square metre*. But when a kitchen is involved, there are a number of other costs you need to factor in, such as plumbing, electrics and the kitchen itself – all estimated to add an extra £10,000-£25,000* (plus VAT). There’s also the impact on your day-to-day life during the build. Plus the time and effort required to find a designer/architect/builder, source materials, and take care of planning permission, party wall agreements and building regulations.
So before you spend any money, think about whether the problems with your current space will be solved by an extension. If you’d like a larger, multi-purpose space that all the family can enjoy, if your current layout is cramped and impractical, or if you think you could make more of your home’s potential value-wise, a kitchen extension could well be worth it. It’ll add value and give you a welcoming space that everyone will love spending time in. However, if your existing space is simply being under-utilised or you’re on a tight budget, re-jigging the layout within your home’s current footprint or installing a fresh new kitchen could be enough to give your abode that much-needed spring in its step.
In most cases, adding an extension will increase your property’s value, and a bigger kitchen has been ranked as one of the top five value-adding extensions. However, if you’re planning on selling your property in the near future, to ensure you’re not left out of pocket, the cost of creating the extension must be less than the value it will add to your property. And you should also bear in mind the property ceiling price in your area. If you want to avoid over-spending, get some professional advice from a property expert or architect first.
Just diving straight in with your credit card is a one-way ticket to a kitchen extension becoming a money pit, so before you spend anything, plan out a detailed budget (and revisit it regularly) and allow a 15%-20% contingency to cover unforeseen costs.
The labour/build costs are often the most significant expense, so consider going for a simple design that will be straightforward to build. For example, moving load-bearing walls or rerouting utilities is particularly costly, so think carefully before doing this. Take the time to get plenty of quotes, prepare a detailed brief and hire professionals accredited through trade organisations such as the Federation of Master Builders.
With kitchens being such high-use areas, it’s important to go for the best quality you can afford – and being on a budget doesn’t mean you have to compromise on quality. Our entry-level Nobilia kitchens offer superbly engineered, stylish German kitchens at a cost comparable to lower-spec high street equivalents. Alternatively, Schüller C Range offers exactly the same manufacturing quality as Schüller’s premium Next 125 range, but at a mid-range cost.
When it comes to items such as windows, doors and skylights, off-the-shelf is usually cheaper than custom-made, so save money by ensuring your plans incorporate the standard sizes/designs available. Also think about what existing items you might be able to re-use and make cost-effective decisions with the materials – if you love a certain material but it’s too expensive, could you incorporate it as a smaller accent detail instead?
Adding just a few square metres could make a drastic improvement to the practicality and aesthetics of your home – and if your extension comes under permitted development, you may not need planning permission. With clever design, you could use the extra space to incorporate a small dining area with banquette seating, improve your entertaining space with a kitchen island or add a foldaway desk for when you’re working from home. You can also maximise the feeling of spaciousness by adding a pitched roof to create height, bringing in natural light with skylights, or adding bifold doors to extend the space out into the garden.
We offer a range of options for fitting out your new kitchen extension, and our experts will work with you to ensure you’re getting the best design, quality and value for money as possible.
To get started, book a tour of our kitchen showroom.