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Extend or Move? As an Adelaide Architect, I have been asked this question many times.  For most people  What stops many people needing a bigger home from moving, is that a lot of money is spent without any gain. Usually around 30k is lost in an average move if you add up the costs of advertising, Agents fees and Stamp duty. Building an Extension onto your existing house means that you can get exactly the space and lifestyle you want without the risk of buying other peoples problems. What you spend extending increases your property value rather than paying for your land agents BMW.


Architectural Home extension at Marion Adelaide: Existing cream brick home before renovation

House Extension: From 1960's Cream Brick Project Home to Modern Family Home

This tired rental property is typical of much of the housing stock in Adelaide's Marion Council area. Situated 15 minutes from the CBD in the inner Suburb of Mitchel Park, this 1960's, Jennings Project home was structurally sound but in need of a major re-design to bring it up to today's standards.   The original house's fabric was converted to service areas and bedrooms and and a new open plan family area built onto the rear of the property.  The property faced East-West and the new extension was designed along the Southern boundary so that Northern light could be maximised and the benefits of passive solar access gained.
Architectural Home extension at Marion Adelaide: New roof render and windows finished

House Extension at Mitchel Park, Adelaide:The Build Underway Showing Facade Changes

The old cement-tile roof was removed and extended to incorporate car-parking under the main roof. The existing roof structure was trimmed up and new colorbond roofing and guttering were fitted. The old windows (including the front door suite) were removed and replaced with new cedar windows and feature louvre panels.  The existing paving, scrappy bushes and lawn removed and new Electric supply and Sewerage installed. Render was applied to the entire facade. Paint is still to be applied.
Architectural Home extension at Marion Adelaide: Front of House almost finished

House Extension at Mitchel Park:The Build completed Showing Facade Changes

Painting and and paving are now complete.  Boral Culture stone cladding and granite was applied as a feature to the entry.  The street presence of the house is vastly improved and is changed  from a visually cluttered and dilapidated building into a serene Zen influenced home.  It now awaits landscaping to soften the hard edges and link the house to its environment.
Architectural Home Extension at Marion Adelaide: Foundation preparation

House Extension at Mitchel Park: Demolition at the Rear of the Property

The existing carport and rear kitchen wall was removed to allow the new North Facing 80 sq. meter extension to seamlessly integrate with the existing house. A linking flat roof is to be built between the new and old structure (in the shadowed area to the left of the workman). The existing dutch gable roof behind will be extended to the fence-line providing a  carport under the main roof and second entry into the house.
Architectural Home extension at Marion Adelaide: Rear Extension constuction underway

House Extension at Mitchel Park, Adelaide: The New Build Underway at the Rear of the Property

The extension houses the new kitchen, family, and living room. Large cedar sliding doors and high-lite windows under the high skillion roof allow ample light in. The verandah roof when built will tie the new and old together visually. The strip footings visible in the foreground indicate the extents of this future outdoor entertaining space.
Home extension Marion Adelaide: Verandah and Entertaining area almost finished

House Extension at Mitchel Park: The New Build Almost Finished at the Rear of the Property

The idea was to build a large verandah opening off the entertaining area. When in "Party mode" the effective size of the entertaining room is increased by another 60 sq. meters.  There are no purlins which give a clean architectural look to the area. A high quality pigmented cellular polycarbonate sheeting was used to allow filtered light but exclude UV. There is a cedar bulkhead above the large sliding doors that enlarges to become a ceiling around the side of the house above the future outdoor kitchen/barbeque area.
Landscape design Marion

House Extension at Mitchel Park, Adelaide:The New Build with Landscaping finished

The Garden, Alfresco area and house all form one cohesive design. A lovely place for indoor/outdoor living.
Early in my career I worked in Agriculture and then the Landscape section of the Highways Department.   I am very aware of how the Garden and House should integrate and use appropriate thematic plantings and hard landscape elements to suite the Architectural style.


 Home at Goodwood, Adelaide: New Living Area and Bedroom Extension to Bungalow
I have found that Architects tend to overestimate the ability of clients to imagine spaces and volumes from plans and Elevations. I draw 3d models for any of my jobs that require a reasonable amount of visualisation skills.  I find that this way all parties have the same expectations regarding the design.
This project finished construction in late 2014. The existing building was a tiny red brick Bungalow that had been lovingly restored by the owner. The area was a listed streetscape and the owner and council required any upgraded to the front yard to be in keeping with the adjacent houses. A woven wire fence was detailed accordingly.
Additional living space was needed and a new carport, living room, 2 bedrooms and verandah was added to the rear of the property. The verandah (sketch pictured) was designed in similar style to the front porch of the house.  Multiple pairs of french doors connect the new living room with the outdoor areas.
The owner wanted something to match the 1930's period externally but with a more modern twist to the inside. The result was a sympathetic extension that still allows a modern lifestyle.


Building Cost

Expect to pay a minimum of $1500 per square meter. Significant money can be saved if you are an owner builder in which case $1000/m or less may be achievable 

Architects Fee

This varies widely but most Architects charge  around 10% of the build cost. This percentage will increase if the build cost is small. My business operates on hourly rates and I provide capped prices for client peace of mind. Typically my fee for an extension will be between  6k to 8k, depending on what the client wants

Other costs

Expect around 2k for an Engineer and around another 1k for CITB levy, council and Certifier fees. If you are building onto a boundary another 1k from a surveyor will be needed.