Some options to consider when trying to create more space in your home include building a ground floor extension (building out), second-storey extension (building up) or a house raise (building under).
House raising has grown in popularity in recent years, particularly in the inner suburbs where changes to the value and availability of inner-city land which have made this type of extension more economically viable. To extend many of our older inner-city homes it’s necessary to retain their traditional character and this can be more easily achieved via a house raise and building underneath. Inner-city row houses with their highset construction and lightweight materials are ideal candidates for a house raise, the iconic Queenslander too, but what other houses can be raised and why should you do it?
WHY RAISE YOUR HOUSE?
Create a new home design that suits your needs
Raising your house and building under gives you the opportunity to remodel and improve the overall layout of your home, this is especially helpful for families who want to create separate bedroom (upstairs) and living areas (downstairs). In this instance its common to open-up the newly-built ground floor area to the surrounding yard. A smooth transition between the indoors and outdoors improves the flow between spaces and makes homes feel more inviting.
Increase the value of your property
Like a second storey extension, raising your house and building-under will increase the floor area of your home without increasing the overall footprint on the site so it’s a great option when there’s limited yard space. Sometimes the size of the project warrants updating the overall look which will further increase the market value of your property.
If you’ve already been through the process of considering whether to extend or sell your home then you’ll probably be aware of the lack of availability of large family homes in the inner suburbs, they attract a premium price and are usually on the market for a very short time.
Investing in your property by raising it and building-under can help futureproof the value of your property which will help provide you with long term peace-of-mind.
Retain your yard
Raising your home and building-under helps to retain precious yard space, this in turn provides more options for optimising your site through the addition of external features such as landscaping, a vegetable garden, pool or outdoor entertainment area, and so on.
Which homes are suitable for raising and building under?
To successfully raise your home and build under, the structure and surrounding foundations must be suitable for taking the additional load of a new floor. A house with a timber floor frame and subfloor support posts can more easily be adapted than a brick veneer home on a concrete slab.
Council rules may restrict you from building an additional storey. In some parts of Brisbane for example, there are strict regulations regarding character / heritage homes and maintaining their traditional appeal, this can make certain home renovations more challenging. However, raising the house and renovating underneath can preserve heritage features while adding much-needed space!
How do I raise my house?
House raising can be a complex process so it must be carried out by a team of qualified professionals. It involves lifting the building off its posts using hydraulic jacks to achieve the desired height. Then, new post supports are fitted and the house is lowered onto the new foundations. A concrete slab is typically built underneath. Additional structural support may be added to the original building.
All house raising projects should start with a thorough property assessment that identifies any factors that might affect construction including topography, accessibility, development constraints, and so on. Plans will need to be drafted and building approval is essential, particularly for homes that have a traditional building character requirement. Council regulations and site restrictions may pose a challenge to building on your site so it’s wise to use a Builder who has house raising and remodelling experience.
Granny and Co Homes are experts in home remodelling, our team of professionals has successfully built many house extensions and renovations throughout southeast Queensland and New South Wales. Call us on 07 3180 2681 to discuss your home extension needs.