Home Additions: everything to make your project a success!
You need extra space but you like your neighbourhood and, like many families, you have decided to expand your home rather than opting for a move. Although it is a significant investment, it adds value to your home and provides many other benefits.
A successful home extension starts here
A home extension is a project almost as complex as a new construction and nothing should be left to chance. It's a significant investment and it's not wise to entrust it to a "first timer". It is important to choose the right experts to accompany and assist you with the thorough planning of your project. That's why we recommend only 360° Verified Contractors and experts who have met our strict criteria and have a track-record of similar projects and satisfied customers.
Solutions to enlarge your home
Depending on the configuration of your home, the most often considered solutions are extensions on foundation, with or without a basement, an extension on a pier foundation, the addition of a garage, as well as the addition of a floor.
In the case of an extension on concrete or pier foundation, it's possible to make a slant towards the back of the house or a lateral extension according to the configuration of your house or the surrounding property.
It should be noted that the addition of a floor requires a structure (often wood) and a foundation strong enough to accommodate the extra weight. For this, we can recommend an engineer who can provide a load calculation.
Going larger is a great opportunity to rethink your living space and can, if done right, significantly increase the value of your home. It's also a cheaper project than a new construction and often less expensive than a move when you start calculating everything.
Planning an extension
A home addition requires careful planning and some technical expertise. Everything is done in several, and separate, stages and each of them is crucial. A Reno-Assistance advisor will guide you through all stages of your project. They'll help you identify the professionals and contractors best-suited to carry out your project according to your needs and will put them in competition to get you a fair price.
Steps to a successful home expansion
- Check with your municipality to make sure that an extension, as you envision it, is permissible. This step also allows you to learn the requirements or restrictions that your municipality may have.
- Carry out a load calculation if you consider adding a floor to the existing structure to confirm that it can support the weight of an additional floor.
- Have plans made by a professional technologist or architect who is not tied to a specific contractor, so that you can receive quotes from the contractors of your choice on your home addition. We can recommend an independent professional specialized in additions.
- Receive quotes from reputable contractors. Of course, you want to pay as little as possible, but you must first ensure that we find the best contractors for this project. That's our specialty: we do it hundreds of times a day.
- Compare quotes carefully, since it's not just the price at the bottom of the page that matters. What are the chosen materials? What are the inclusions/exclusions? What is the level of finishing (skirting, framing, quality of windows, paint layers, etc.) that is included? We can help you compare and understand your quotes.
Building on or off of your existing home
Home additions come in many shapes and sizes — from finishing your basement and converting your sunroom to these major projects:
- Adding a second storey
- Building a garage or an extension
- Adding a rearward extension
- Building a solarium or porch
- Building a room above the garage
- Transforming a single-family residence into a multi-generational home
Depending on the configuration of your home, the most commonly considered solutions are a foundation expansion, with or without a basement, a pier foundation expansion, adding a garage, or building an additional floor. It should be noted that the addition of a floor requires a structure and foundation strong enough to accommodate the extra weight.
A home expansion is a great opportunity to rethink your living space and can significantly increase the value of your home. It's also a project often less expensive than a move when you begin to calculate the costs and benefits. Improving and expanding the home you love can prove to benefit your own standard of living while also being a financially wise investment.
A plan for expanding your home
An addition is essentially a construction project and thus requires plans. Expanding a home to meet your needs without distorting it is also a challenge that a good technologist or architect can meet.
Your Reno-Assistance advisor will put you in contact with professionals who have experience with this type of project and will ensure that your expansion fits naturally into the existing building.
Your plans will also allow you to have your project approved by your municipality more easily. It's not because your neighbour has enlarged their house that your permit will be automatically approved!
Once you chose your technologist or architect, their role will be to assess your needs and priorities, analyze your environment and legal or budgetary constraints, propose materials and even fit into the framework of an ecologically-conscious approach, if you wish. These steps will naturally occur in the process of drawing plans. This step is crucial since the contractors' quotes will all be based on this plan.
Preparing for a home addition
A project of this size is planned several months in advance; it is not a project that can be achieved in a few weeks. It's a renovation that is very similar to a new construction and requires almost as many steps.
Thinking of managing this site yourself? Think twice about it!
Extending a house can require the intervention of more than 20 types of building professionals! Sometimes it's better to let experienced professionals manage this project for you. It will be cheaper than making mistakes, and most importantly, much less stressful.
What is the cost of a home addition?
The price of a home addition can vary significantly, but in the following table you'll see the average market prices:
|Type of House Addition||Average Cost
Hardware and Labour
|Addition of floor (unfinished)||
$100 to $125 sq./ft.
|Addition of floor (turnkey)||$145 to $175 sq./ft.|
|Addition on piers (unfinished)||$110 to $125 sq./ft.|
|Addition on piers (turnkey)||$140 to $175 sq./ft.|
|Addition on a slab foundation (unfinished)||$125 to $170 sq./ft.|
|Addition on a slab foundation (turnkey)||$170 to $215 sq./ft.|
|Solarium (4 seasons) (turnkey)||$145 to $185 sq./ft.|
|Addition of a garage (unfinished)||$85 to $115 sq./ft.|
|Addition of a garage (turnkey)||$120 to $150 sq./ft.|
|Addition of a room over an existing garage (turnkey)||$145 to $175 sq./ft.|
Note that the cost of a home addition may vary by city, tending to be slightly higher in larger cities. For example, a home addition is usually more expensive in the cities of Toronto and Montreal than their surrounding suburbs.
To gain a better idea of the actual costs of a home addition, you can browse through real home additions projects with their end costs on the home addition section of our Reno-Inspiration page, or speak with one of our Renovation Advisors who will be able to discuss your project with you and provide an estimate for the home addition you have in mind with no obligation.
Get up to three quotes and start making your dream project come true!
You can trust Reno-Assistance to send you the contractors you need to get your job done on time and on budget. It’s free and there’s no obligation to work with the contractors we refer to you… but we think you’ll be more than satisfied with their workmanship and professionalism. To get started today, simply fill out the form to the right! Yes, it’s that easy!