Home Additions at Eastview Homes

What is a Home Addition? Eastview Homes considers any building project to be a proper home addition when an exterior wall or the roof of an existing house is adjusted outwards for the purpose of creating new rooms. The one exception to the rule is a garage conversion in which that part of the house which previously kept the car warm and dry is converted into living space. More on that below. Here’s a list of five types of home additions we most commonly create. We make a distinction between a general home addition and a second story addition simply because the latter requires more structural engineering and ends up being a slightly different job.

General Multi-Room Home Addition

No two building projects are ever the same. But in general, the words home addition have come to mean a multi-room structure that is added onto the side or back of a house and which is permanently open to the main house. When built onto the house ‘sympathetically’ by skilled contractors, a good addition essentially blends into the existing structure and becomes invisible to visitors who see only a bigger family home. Unsympathetic home additions by contrast are easily spotted, but this is not necessarily because of inferior workmanship. Sometimes this is done deliberately to showcase historic buildings, or more often it just happens when old meets new in a preconceived artistic fusion. At Eastview Homes our preference is to build sympathetically and we like to make-over older surfaces so everything appears breathtakingly new and beautiful.

A general house addition can include all manner of new rooms, including whole new floors with new staircases, rear or front additions with or without basements. The most commonly selected new rooms are usually entertaining spaces; great rooms, dining rooms, family rooms and kitchens top the list while bathrooms, guest bedrooms, and master bedrooms follow close behind in popularity. From a geography standpoint, the backyard is most commonly seized land onto which homes expand, followed by the sides of a house and least popular are forward expansions into the front yard. Backyard expansions are often accompanied by rear covered porch considerations and wooden decks and fencing complete the property. Side expansions bring everyone’s attention to the property lot lines and threaten relations with neighbors. Front additions are used to provide a new covered entry or to convert an existing space into a new foyer entry.

Although they’re expensive, with costs rarely dipping below five figures in any market, full-size house additions typically return high value in relation to their building cost.

Room Addition or Bump Out Home Improvement

New windows on a home addition in Oakville

A room addition or a room ‘bump out’ is a single room structure built onto the side of a house. This is usually a single function room, such as a bedroom or bathroom. Sometimes this ‘addition’ only expands the size of this single room. But one more room can make a big difference in the lives of the family dwelling here and it can significantly improve the value of the house.

A house bump out is a scaled-down Home Addition. It might just be another fifty square feet added onto your kitchen so that you can squeeze in a kitchen island. Or a bump-out to create a little more space inside the living room and thereby make a comfortable place to eat and socialize. Room additions and bump outs often lay down a new roof-line, sometimes employing a shed style or flat roof to cover the expansion. While these types of additions are less expensive than full-size, conventional additions, they are still not cheap. And unlike sunrooms and solariums they are still subject to building codes, permits, and inspectors.

Second Story Home Addition

structural framing residential house in Burlington Ontario, 2018
Adding a second story addition in Burlington

The second story addition is a common home renovation project for people looking to add more space to their house but unwilling or unable to cede more land to the building’s footprint. Why build out when you can build up ? It sounds more efficient, but be warned, a second story home addition can actually cost 30 to 50 percent more than a general home addition, and this job is almost never be done for less than $100,000. That’s because its not all about the second story; considerable alterations need to occur downstairs to support and to allow access your new space above. A new stairwell may require surrendering a small room’s worth of space below, but you don’t need to lose functionality downstairs to gain space above. Depending on its design, the new staircase could become a hidden laundry or provide some much-needed storage underneath the steps.

Putting the roof on a second story addition on a Burlington home

Second story home additions can really transform a bungalow into a spacious and traditional two story family home. Through the design process Eastview Homes we will work with homeowners directly to layout the function and position of every room, new and old as the whole house’s efficiency is overhauled and improved on many levels. New plumbing, electricity and improved HVAC systems are often needed for the changing requirements.

Glass conservatories have to be listed here as a type of home addition, but designing and building these structures is not typically a service offered by Eastview Homes. We’ll freely admit however that when done right these buildings can be become attractive amenities and a wonderful way to bridge the indoors with the outdoors on temperate mornings and warm summer nights. Glass conservatories are the grandest extension of the sunroom or solarium style home addition, especially when they open onto backyard pools or tennis courts. A conservatory was once legally defined as having more than half is sides made of glass (or any translucent material) and more than three quarters of its roof glazed. In Canada that means double glazed (two panes of glass) as conservatories are part of a house and generally open in the winter (indeed most popular in the winter) as so they come with their own heating and cooling (and moisture control) challenges .

Garage Conversion Home Addition

Contemplating a garage conversion home addition project in Oakville
Contemplating a garage conversion home addition project in Oakville

Cars are becoming less popular these days, especially in Canada’s bigger cities, and so the garage conversion is happening with greater frequency in residential areas well served by public transit.

A garage conversion happens when the car park is annexed by the family house. The job is half done as there is already a concrete foundation three walls and a roof. Most of Oakville and Burlington’s residential housing has a garage attached and this is often a ‘finished space’. The home addition is completed in here by removing the bay doors and adding a solid wall, windows, insulation, flooring, and a proper ceiling. Usually, garage conversions become living rooms or bedrooms. The easy home expansion can come with some downsides however, For one thing, it can be difficult to aesthetically and functionally blend the conversion with the rest of the house. Major systems such as plumbing and HVAC are typically not in place, so they will need to be installed. Garage conversions have low resale value, and even in today’s UBER economy, houses with no garages are harder to sell.

Managing Your Family During a Home Addition

The classic 2 x 12 To-Do list at home addition job site

Knowing all the details and getting the facts straight upfront can help keep stress to a minimum during the demolition and re-construction of your family’s home. The process of adding a conventional addition to your house is long and arduous. Often it helps to consider that you’re basically building a mini-house, complete with all of the trappings of a regular house-build, good or bad: that means we’ll need an architect, contractor, permits, wiring, HVAC, plumbing, change orders, and more. Although they’re expensive, with costs rarely dipping below five figures in any market, full-size house additions typically return high value in relation to their building cost.

Good contractors lay down competent timelines and production schedules that allow conscientious parents to retreat with the family during the worst parts of the renovation. This requires precise timing and a contractor who’ll near-guarantee that the job will be completed or nearly completed when the family returns. Now remember this is a hidden expense that must be factored into the cost of the home addition. It’s hidden because it’s not something the contractor is going to list on the invoice. Keeping your family safe and out-of-harm’s way, (if not entirely comfortable) and keeping your marriage together during the renovation is the subject of many home improvement television shows and the good news is that this story always has a happy ending at Eastview Homes.