Stonehearth Remodeling


Home Remodels: Build Up or Build Out?

A Guide to Home Additions

There are many reasons you may opt for a home remodel. Some homeowners take on the task of a major home remodel for the sake of appraising their home’s resale value, as they plan to move to a different location.

However, homeowners are more commonly remodeling for themselves. They have put in the hard work and saved up and are interested in elevating the quality, design, and/or size of their home so they can stay in their current location. This is when investing in a home addition makes the most sense.

Whenever taking on a full-house remodel with the intent of increasing your home’s square footage, you’ll have two options – building up, or building out.

Expanding Square Footage: Build Up or Build Out?

People choose to remodel rather than move when they love the area they are in. If you can’t imagine moving away from the shops, school district, neighborhood, community, or friends or family that you’re currently around, remodeling is the way to go.

However, many homeowners get nervous about these decisions when they feel their current living situation simply isn’t big enough. That’s where home remodels to expand your home’s square footage come in.

You’ll have two main options, each with its own strengths. You can either build up (vertically) or build out (horizontally). Here are a couple things to keep in mind with each:

Building Up

Building up refers to adding square footage to your home via a vertical build. Essentially, you are opting to add an extra floor (or multiple floors) to the top of your house. This is a great way to expand square footage and may afford you the luxury of moving storage – or even bedrooms – up a level to declutter your house.

If you plan on building up, you need to keep in mind that the contractor will more-than-likely be removing the roof of your house. Without a roof, you’re left without an adequate way of heating or cooling your home, and potentially without running water. What does that mean?

Generally, you’ll need to rent a hotel room or live with other family/friends at least for a portion of the remodel. Once the roof is back secure in place, you should be able to move back in in no time!

Usually, the home’s we see build vertically are single or double-story homes, as once you’re at three, there can be legal and safety implications of building higher. As with anything, it all depends on multiple circumstances. Reach out to us if you have questions about it!

Building Out

People often love the idea of expanding their homes horizontally, but you need to remember – the room still has to come from somewhere. Adding to the side of your house means you’ll be sacrificing part of your yard, so you’ll need to carefully consider which is important to have more of.

The obvious benefit of subtracting yardage and building horizontally is you will have more square footage to declutter your house, as well as less landscaping to do!

Horizontal remodels are a bit less disruptive than a vertical addition, since most of the construction is happening outside of your home’s main rooms.

While each project is different, most of the time a horizontal remodel won’t require you to move out of your home during construction, but you’ll have to prepare yourself for the process nonetheless!

Usually, building out means a remodeling company, like Stonehearth, will have to come in and pour a foundation for the new section of the home. The walls are then framed and any needed air ducts and plumbing are put in place, along with a roof over the new section.

Homeowners frequently get concerned that an exterior home addition will look “out of place”, but this is easily avoidable with some design planning! As long as the type of brick, paint, or siding of your home is matched on the exterior addition, your home buildout will look absolutely stunning. Of course, power washing the outside of the rest of your home immediately after the home remodel can help with appearance congruency!

Which Home Addition Is Right for Your Home?

If you are looking to expand the square footage of your home through a home addition, but can’t decide the best way to do so, please don’t hesitate to just call us with questions. We’ve done many of these types of remodels and have a lot of advice to offer. We’re happy to answer any of your questions!

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