Why Choose Contour Architectural Designs?

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Front Extensions

Why move if you can improve? A survey showed that 42% of Brits find extending or creating extra space in their current homes better value than moving, plus you save the costs of moving such as estate agents fees, legal fees, and stamp duty.

Where should I start?

Getting the results you want starts with an assessment of the existing structure.  Contour Architectural Designs Ltd ("Contour Designs") offer a free onsite initial consultation where you can discuss your extension plans or ideas.

Is adding a front extension to my home the right home improvement for me?

Consider what you want to use the extra space for. If you are looking to add extra bedroom space would adding a rear extension be a better option to reduce potential road noise.

If I decide not to have a front extension how else may I be able create extra space in my home?

Again this depends upon what you want the extra space for. A loft conversion may be ideal for creating an additional bathroom, whilst a side or rear extension maybe better for creating a kitchen or lounge diner.

Will it add value to my home?

If you are looking solely to add value to your property, will adding your planned extension actually do this? And if so by how much? Why not speak to your local estate agent to give you an idea of how much additional value you are adding to your home by completing the extension. If you invest too much on any project you’re unlikely to see a return on your money.

How much will it cost me to build my front extension? And how long will it take?

There are many factors involved working out the cost of an extension down to the price of the type of paint you will use!  Building works cost anything from £1,500 to £2,400 per square metre.  Therefore a 4 metre x 5 metre extension will cost in the region of £40,000-£58,000.  Fitting out a new kitchen or bathroom could cost a further £4,500-£20,000 upwards depending on the final specification.  Typically it could take between 3-18 months to complete a front extension.

Where can I find further inspiration for my project?

Why not take a look at our inspiration boards on our website -  http://www.contour-designs.co.uk/inspiration-boards/ideas-front-extensions.

Do I need planning permission to add a front extension to my home?

Most extensions to the front of your home are considered to be a permitted development and therefore not requiring an application for planning permission provided that:

  1. the maximum height of the extension is not higher than four metres.
  2. the ground area covered by the extension and any other buildings within the boundary of the property, excluding the original house, is not more than half the total area of the property.
  3. Is not forward of the provisional elevation or side elevation fronting a highway.

What about if I want to build a porch at the front of my home?

A porch may also be  built under permitted development and does not require planning permission provided that:

  1. the ground floor area (measured externally) would not exceed three square metres
  2. no part would be more than three metres above ground level
  3. no part of the porch would be within two metres of any boundary of the dwellinghouse and the highway

What is permitted development?

Permitted development is simply a list of works that the Government has agreed can be carried out without having to get local council approval.  Generally permitted development rights cover minor extensions, loft/garage conversions, demolition and certain changes of use.  However Contour Designs will always recommend that you apply for a Certificate of Lawfulness to ensure that you have documentary evidence that any alteration was compliant with the law at that time, othewise this can impact any sale of your property at a later date.

How large an extension does permitted development allow me to build?

Until 2019, subject to the neighbour consultation scheme, the maximum size allowed for a single-storey extension is

  1. an eight-metre extension to a detached house or
  2. a six-metre extension to other types of housing

While most houses have permitted development rights, flats and maisonettes do not and whilst all council areas have the same permitted development approvals, permitted development rights are subject to change.  Contour Designs offer a free onsite initial consultation and are able to discuss how permitted development may affect your proposed extension.

If I can’t build my planned extension under permitted development, can I build it under planning permission regulations?

Yes, it is possible to seek permission to build a single storey extension under planning permission, even if it is not allowable under permitted development.

What is a Certificate of Lawfulness?

There may be times, for example if you decide to sell your property, that you may need to prove that the additional work completed at your property meets the permitted development criteria.  A Certificate of Lawfulness does this.  These certificates are available from the local council.  Countour Designs will be able to work with you and obtain a Certificate of Lawfulness on your behalf.

I live in a conservation area (designated land), does permitted development still apply?

If you live in a Conservation Area your Permit­ted Development rights are restricted. Each local authority has its own policy for Conservation Areas but generally the basis of the policy is to prevent the loss of character of the Conservation Area. Contour Architectural Designs Ltd offer a free onsite initial consultation and are able to discuss how living in a conservation area may affect permitted development in your area.

I live in a listed building, does permitted development still apply?

If you want to alter or extend a listed building in a way that affects its character or appearance as a building of special architectural or historic interest, or even demolish it, you must first apply for listed building consent from your local planning authority. Unauthorised work is a criminal offence.

My next door neighbours are planning to stop my plans to build an extension as they say it blocks their right to light.

Neighbours may claim they have a legal right to light to one or more of their windows. There is such a thing as a legally established ‘right to light’, usually estab­­lished auto­matically ‘by prescription’ after 20 years, however, it is only relevant in limited circum­stances.

A right to light overrides any planning permission or permitted develop­ment rights. However it only provides for whatever light is reasonably required for the use of the building. It does not mean that your exten­sion cannot obstruct a neighbour’s window or view or reduce the amount of sunlight entering. These types of issues are dealt with under planning permission.

Will I require Building Consent?

Some extensions are subject to building regulations.  It may be necessary to involve a structural engineer if your project is complex. An approved inspector from your local council will inspect the works to confirm that it meets certain standards.  Contour Designs will be able to advise you and submit any building regulation applications to the Council on your behalf

What do I need to do now?

If you want see how Contour Designs can help you take your first steps to your new front extension, why not take a look at our website -  www.contour-designs.co.uk to find out more.  If you want to see what other services Contour Designs offer, these are listed under our Services page.  Alternatively, you can contact us directly using our Contact Us if you have specific questions or want to arrange an initial consultation.

Our Core Services

Site / Building Surveys

Building Regulations Drawings

Planning Permission & Architectural Designs

Topographical Surveys

Structural Design

Drainage Surveys

Flood Risk Statements

Get In Touch

For more information on precisely what our architectural consultants and designers can do for your project simply pick up the phone and call our office on 01268 690974 or send a message through our contact page. Whether you’re making a general enquiry or wish to discuss a specific project, a member of our team will be only too happy to help.


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