Extending living space has become increasingly attractive to Britain’s homeowners over the past couple of years. New findings from Sainsbury’s Home Insurance indicates extensions to the rear and side of properties have been the most popular kind of residential extension over the past 24 months, with almost a third (31%) people who have extended their homes having opted for one.
Conservatories are the second most popular residential extension (29%), followed by loft extensions (15%), garage conversions (11%) and the construction of an outbuilding such as a garden room or home office (5%)(1).
Of those who have undertaken home extensions in the past 24 months(1), 25% have added between 11-20m2 of additional living space have to their homes, while 23% have added 21-30m2 and 18% have added 31 square metres or more.
The findings are supported by a “snapshot” poll amongst a cross-section of 76 UK builders. Amongst the builders surveyed, rear extensions were the type of home extension most frequently carried out, with 92% of builders having completed one in the past 12 months. These were followed by side extensions (72%), loft extensions (54%) and garage conversions (41%).
The findings indicate a trend towards families spending more time in larger kitchens where they cook and eat together. According to the builders’ survey(2), bigger kitchens and kitchen diners were the most frequent reason cited for a home extension, with 84% of builders having worked on these. The second most popular intended use for the new space was for additional bedrooms (61%), followed by new bathrooms and home offices (53% each).
Tom Thomson of Sainsbury’s Home Insurance said: “For those who are improving and extending their homes, it’s crucial to advise their home insurance provider. Making revisions to a property such as adding new rooms could change the value of the property significantly and failing to report alterations may see people left under-insured or with invalidated insurance policies.”
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