Renovating your home is an exciting step to creating the living space you want. Like other lifetime events, renovation plans won’t develop without additional stress, but it’s an incredible opportunity to unearth original features, make the property your own and build memories.

Home renovations can be profitable if you plan to sell the property, but this will need to be supported by the marketability and quality of the renovations. To help your project be as prosperous as it can be, we’ve created a guide to get you off to a successful start.

For further assistance throughout your renovation journey, you can contact our team of experts here at Martin Perry Associates. Included in our array of services, our structural engineers in Devon are available to help you materialise your ideas.

The interior of a house being renovated

What Should I Consider When Rennovating a House?

With a whirlwind of matters to keep in mind and prospective ideas for your project, it can be difficult figuring out where to start. The questions to ask yourself at this point are:

Is the renovation project right for you in the first place?
What do you want to achieve throughout this process?

If you’re sure that this is the step you want to take and the only way to achieve this is through renovating your home, then you must understand the property you are renovating, as hidden costs are a common occurrence when renovating.

Finding the Right Property

It’s not easy to find the perfect project from just looking online, there are a lot of factors to consider, whether you want to continue living in the house or you hope to sell it on for profit.

When looking at potential properties, you will need to:

• Look at neighbouring properties in the area and their renovations, such as extensions.
• Consider the space around the property and what opportunities they can provide.
• Research the location’s market price and the property’s potential.
• Hire a structural engineer to have a survey done – this will highlight any major and expensive issues such as subsidence, damp or drainage.
• Obtain a building report – this will notify you of the construction methods used to build the property.
• When applying for a planning application, you will need to also obtain a measured survey, which will provide a detailed drawing of the property’s layout.

How Much do You Know About the Property?

It’s important to be aware of the property’s history and any information that may hinder or change prospective renovation plans. This will ensure a much smoother process and reduce the chances of any unexpected costly expenditures.

If you’re unsure how old the property is, you can check with the Land Registry. The Land Registry holds Welsh and English land records. Your local authority can also provide information about the property.

A man sawing a piece of wood

Do You Need Planning Permission?

An important factor that will have a major influence over your renovation plans is planning permission. It can also be a time-consuming process, so it’s important to establish if it’s required early in the renovation process.

Planning permission is necessary if you are hoping to build something new on land, make major changes to the building (like an extension) or change the use of the building.

If your renovations are purely internal, then you may not need to apply for planning permission, although this should be checked with your local authority anyway.

However, there are certain types of work that do not require an application for planning permission which fall under “permitted development rights”. These are derived from general planning permissions that are granted by Parliament, rather than your local authority.

Work that can usually be carried out under permitted development includes:

• Single story extensions
• Loft conversions
• Conservatories
• Porches
• Decking
• Basement development
• Parking

Although you may not need planning permission, renovation projects involving structural work and electrical installation still require building regulations approval.

If you have chosen the perfect property to renovate, you can contact our team of experts here at Martin Perry Associates, who will work with you to support your restorations. Contact one of our structural engineers to kick start your project!