- T-square or parallel bar
- 30-60-90 triangle
- 45-45-90 triangle
- Measuring tape
- House floor plan templates
A home addition is a great way to add square footage to your house. If you like your existing home but are feeling a little cramped, you should consider designing your own home addition.
Measure the outside of the house for the overall width and length of the house and for its general perimeter shape.
Measure your existing rooms. Take an overall measurement of each room.
Draw the location of each room on a piece of paper to scale using the architectural scale and triangles. Most residential floor plans are drawn at a 1/4-inch or a 1/8-inch scale.
Measure and locate the existing windows and doors.
Measure how big you want your home addition to be on the floor plan.
Draw the home addition on the floor plan in the location you have decided upon.
Assess if you can open up and connect the home addition with the existing house. An architect can evaluate if you are able to open up the existing walls in the location you have chosen.
Realize some selective demolition may be required to understand how the existing home is built.
Place the home addition in a location where you can use an existing opening, such as a window or door, to connect the home addition to the existing structure.
Research the style of your home. The year it was built will give you clues.
Find different pictures of different styles of homes that you like.
Design the home addition so that it does not look like a home addition. You can borrow design elements from the existing home to carry over into the home addition so that it blends in more.
Consult with a local architect to help design the home addition so that it blends in with the neighborhood.
Building and Planning Department
Go to your local building and planning department to find out what building codes and ordinances apply for your home addition.
Follow all the guidelines set forth by the building and planning department while in the design process of the home addition.
Find what the process is to build your home addition. Ask them if you need to get permits and drawings approved. They will tell you if an architect is required for the home addition or if you can do the drawings yourself.
TIPS AND WARNINGS
- TIP : Take pictures of your house to help you figure out where to add on and how the addition will look.
Drive around your neighborhood to find similar homes with additions.
Consult with an architect prior to starting the process to get some professional advice on design, cost and feasibility.
- WARNING : Never try to take down an existing wall or create an opening without first consulting an architect on the stability of the house.
Never try to build a home addition without first consulting your local building and planning department for approval and permits.