If you are renovating your home, you are likely trying to do one of two things: create your ‘dream’ home, or sell to make a profit on the cost of the renovations.
Either way, including future-proofing ideas in your renovation will make your home more liveable for you for years to come, or more appealing to potential buyers.
In our wide experience of creating additions and extensions for Sydney homeowners – well over 1,500 projects and counting – we work mostly with people looking to create their ‘forever’ home.
This is driven by the cost of moving, especially with the big hit of stamp duty, and because people often love their area and neighbours but need to add more space due to a growing family, or looking after older relatives in multigenerational living arrangements.
The three broad areas we cover below are:
- Features that reduce the cost and time needed to ‘run’ your home;
- Technological ideas that make your home more practical – even fun – to live in;
- Changes to your home that anticipate how your needs may change in the future.
Reducing the time and cost of running your home
Reducing your heating and cooling costs is generally a combination of keeping the heat or cold out and paying less for any energy you use.
There are a range of solutions that we’ve covered in detail in recent home improvement articles (“Renovations That Keep Your House Warm” and “7 Practical Tips for Creating a Sustainable Home“) that include smart use of insulation, shading, passive design, the most efficient systems and installing renewable energy.
Whilst this may involve extra investment up front, the savings can be realised over a few years depending on the solutions you choose.
It’s also a ‘win-win’: anything that reduces the amount of energy you consume helps the environment as well as reducing your running costs.
Saving the time it takes to maintain your home, can be as simple as the type of materials you choose when renovating, be that easy-clean paint inside, weather-resistant paint outside, or the plants included in your garden.
Our recent visit to the HIA Sydney Home Show also revealed an array of new composite building materials used for things like decking that look like, but replace, timber and don’t require regular maintenance like re-oiling.
Technology That Transforms Your Home
Renovation is the best time to add ‘smart wiring’ to your home that allows you to control a wide range of appliances from your mobile phone or computer.
Some appliances don’t use wiring and can be run over wi-fi or bluetooth, but others will. This doesn’t require a huge investment, just to be thought off when walls are being replaced, a second storey added, or an extension built. It’s much more expensive to do this “after the fact”.
The range of appliances range from security to home entertainment to controlling your heating.
Once installed, most of the appliances can be controlled remotely from your phone – even opening the front door.
It’s also worth considering including an extra conduit that could be used in the future as technology will undoubtedly keep evolving.
And we also see more homeowners enquiring about fast charging connectors for the electric car they are looking to buy now or anticipating they will almost certainly buy in the near or medium term.
Anticipating the Future
Changing your home for your family’s evolving needs can take many forms.
Depending on what stage of life you are at, you may want to create a teenager’s retreat, parent’s retreat or both!
You also may want to add features that make your home suitable for older people because you are approaching retirement yourself, or you might be inviting an elderly parent to come and live with you.
As our recent article explains, multigenerational living is becoming more common in Australia for a range of reasons.
Solutions include creating separate areas in your home with their own entrances, to transferring bathrooms and bedrooms to the ground floor.
Generally we find that second floor additions and ground floor extensions are the best solution for adding more space to accommodate a growing family, but the configuration of these changes will depend on your individual situation.
Keeping Up With the Trends
With over 35 years in the trade, it’s been fascinating for us at Addbuild to see the evolution of the home and be able to keep our clients and potential clients informed about these developments.
As Sydney’s leading ‘design and build’ company specialising in home additions and extensions, we’ve seen almost every possible family situation and have deep experience in the most effective solutions.
If you’re anticipating that your family’s needs are changing and you’re thinking of adding another room or another floor to your home and want to discuss your plans in detail, feel free to contact us by calling (02) 8765 1555 or by using our online form.