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Are upper or lower house extensions more expensive?Are upper or lower house extensions more expensive?
Are upper or lower house extensions more expensive?Are upper or lower house extensions more expensive?

Are upper or lower house extensions more expensive?

Are upper or lower house extensions more expensive?

House extension cost factors and considerations

See all articlesUpper and lower house extensions
Building Advice
Supa Group
Supa Group
May 1, 2024
Director of Building
May 1, 2024
minute read

House extension cost factors and considerations

The decision between adding an upper level or expanding outward can drastically alter the landscape of your home renovation project. A common belief among homeowners is that extending upwards invariably costs more than pushing the boundaries of their home outward. However, this is not always the case. 

At Supa Group, we've encountered numerous scenarios where upper house extensions have proven to be as cost-effective, if not more so, than their lower counterparts. Let's dive into the factors that influence all the costs of house extensions and dispel some myths.

Understanding the basics of house extensions

Home extensions, whether upper or lower, are influenced by various factors, including materials per square metre, labour, and project size. Complex design features can also impact how much house extensions cost. While each has unique challenges and considerations, understanding the basics behind the costs can help you make an informed decision that aligns with your budget and vision.

House extension cost influencers:

  • Materials
  • Labour
  • Project size
  • Complexity

The real costs of upper house extensions

It's easy to assume that building upwards is automatically more expensive due to the need for structural reinforcement, potential complexities in design, and access during construction. However, upper extensions often bypass extensive foundation work, saving considerable money and time. Furthermore, the cost savings can be substantial when the existing structure can support an additional level without significant modifications.


When ground floor extensions could cost more

Ground floor extensions require significant groundwork, including foundation work and potentially dealing with underground utilities, which can increase costs. Additionally, a larger ground floor extension expanding outwards may involve sacrificing valuable outdoor space and, in some cases, require navigating council building laws and property lines, which can add to the expense.

Cost influencers beyond direction

Several critical factors beyond the direction of the extension can impact overall costs. 

  • Local council laws and regulations
  • The current state of the home
  • Additional necessities like plumbing and electrical systems 
  • Landscape and property lines

Making the right choice for your family

Choosing between an upper living space and a large ground-floor extension is a significant decision that should be made with careful consideration and professional guidance. Consulting with extension building experts who can assess the specific conditions of your property, understand your needs, and navigate the regulatory landscape is crucial. This ensures that you make a choice that suits your lifestyle and is aligned with your budget.

Upper house extension

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