Home improvement

Using a Structural Engineer for a Home Extension

With people spending more time at home, as well as sky-high house prices across South West London, homeowners are now looking at improving their homes rather than moving to a larger property.

There are lots of advantages to extending your home, especially as your family grows and your children need more space. The need for a larger home is one of the most common issues that families have to face, but if you can extend your home, then you don’t need to face all of the expense and upheaval of moving to a larger home.

You may have a huge scope to extend your home and give your family more living space. Addin an extension can not only save you money, but it will also help you to avoid drastically disrupting your life, which can mean moving further away from family and friends and may even mean a change of school for your children.

How a structural engineer can help

When planning your building extension, a structural engineer can help to ensure that your work is safe, uses the right building materials, will meet your needs, and is cost-effective.

Ideally, you should consult both with an architect and GL Design Services as we are a team of chartered structural and civil engineers. You will need a sound design for your extension that will pass both architectural and structural inspection and meet local planning and building regulations.

Your design should clearly map out the building project so that you can get a realistic quote from a building company without running into issues or falling short on building materials etc.

What work is involved in building an extension?

Adding an extension to your home may typically involve laying foundations to support the extension, the building of the extension, and the construction and fitting of a roof over the extension.

There will also be some structural linking of the extension into the frame of the house, which may involve removing an existing section of an external wall. Once the shell of the extension is built, then the addition of electrics and plumbing will be added before the space is finished.

However, all work must be undertaken in compliance with Health & Safety duties under the Construction (Design and Management) Regulations 2015 (CDM2015). This is why it makes sense to bring in a structural engineer from GL Design Solutions to make sure that your plans meet all safety requirement before you begin your building project.

Building an extension isn’t always as straightforward as you may think. Another consideration that is worth mentioning here is the Party Wall Act. You may need a Party Wall Award if your extension is going to be built over any nearby drains. In this case, you will need a ‘Build Over’ agreement from your local water company.

Why it makes sense to use GL Design Solutions

Building a home extension will always involve the structural engineering of the extension foundations, walls and roof at a bare minimum. Adding extra space to your home requires more sound structural designs that will continue to support the first floor and the walls and roof above the extension without compromise.

Structural calculations are important factors of any building extension work so should never be left to the last minute. It can save you a lot of time and money to bring in a structural engineer early on in your planning and design process to get things right from the start and avoid increased building costs further down the line.