Have you outgrown your existing home? If so, you might want to consider an alternative to moving. If you live in a single-story home, adding a second story might be a better, and less expensive, option.
First some things to consider:
1. Check your local zoning office and home owners association. Do they allow second story additions? This step is important. Do not skip it or the consequences could be devastating.
2. Consult with a building engineer to see if your existing foundation and structure will accommodate the additional weight. Not all homes will, and you want to know before you get started.
3. How and where can you build stairs to access the new second floor in a way that looks natural on the first floor? Even if you have an existing staircase, say, leading to your attic, you’ll need to plan for a new one because it’s likely the existing one isn’t up to code.
4. We highly recommend you work with an architect, who will have contacts with building engineers and will know the ins and outs of the local zoning commission. And, of course, an architect will be able to plan the design so so your addition looks as if it was part of the original structure.
Adding a second story allows you to take advantage of modern architectural design features such as a two-story foyer or open building plans. If your existing home has few windows, a second story will allow you to add more, giving you access to natural light and a view you have been missing for years.
Since you’re planning a redesign, this will give you the opportunity to make some changes to your first floor as well. Have you been wanting a larger, modern kitchen? Do you love spiral staircases? Here’s your chance.
So what do you think? Is a second story in your future?