Home Additions and Renovations

West Michigan Home Build and Remodel Contractor

Have you been considering a new addition? Maybe you’ve recently been thinking about a screened-in porch, a three season room, or perhaps you need another bedroom as your family grows. It could be that you’ve always wanted an open floor plan and need someone to knock out a few walls. Or maybe it’s just time for a kitchen remodel. Whatever type of addition or renovation you’re looking for, know that Home Pro is West Michigan’s first choice for home improvement projects. We’re a full-service contractor, which means we can handle any addition or renovation you’re looking for, from a small four-foot addition to a second-floor expansion.

Home Pro of West Michigan has the tools, materials, and staff necessary to help you create your dream home. No matter the project, and no matter the size, we’d love to help. We specialize in three and four season additions, and we also provide general construction services. If you’re thinking about your next home improvement project, give us a call today! We’ll provide you with a free estimate, and can help you decide how best to proceed.

 

What’s the difference between three and four season room additions?

Since we specialize in three and four season room additions, we thought we’d give you a little bit of information on them. One of the questions we hear often is, “what’s the difference between three and four season room additions?” Obviously, there’s a one season difference, as a three season is meant to be used during the warmer months while a four season room is suitable to live in all-year round. But besides the obvious, these two types of additions differ in a few technical ways that it’s important to understand. Here’s an explanation broken down into three main components:

Construction:

First and foremost, it’s important to look at the differences in construction for three season and four season rooms. Typically, a three season room is added to an existing porch, patio or deck, and requires few structural changes. You probably won’t have to pour new cement, add foundation, or wait too long for the project to be finished. Since a three season room or sunroom requires minimal construction, in some cases they can be completed in as little as a week!  

Conversely, a four season room will require an actual addition. That means new walls, new roofing materials, new insulation, and new floors. Because of all of the extra construction, a four season room will certainly take a bit longer to finish. There are a lot of additional components to consider, but your overall comfort is likely to be greater in a room you can enjoy during every season.

Insulation:

So, you might also be thinking: “Why can’t I just use my three season room all year round?” Who’s going to know? Well, you’re more than welcome to use it all year long, but let us tell you why you might decide against that:

A three season room isn’t typically hooked up to your HVAC system, which means no air conditioning and no heat. While air conditioning isn’t much of an issue, since most three season rooms are built to be comfortable in the heat of the summer, it might be difficult to sit in your three season sunroom in the middle of the winter with no heat. Additionally, a three season room isn’t insulated like a typical room of your house would be. Since it’s only meant to be used in warmer temps, and it’s connected to your home with an exterior door, there’s no real need for it to be highly insulated.

Four season rooms on the other hand, should function as another well-integrated part of your home. They are built so that they utilize your existing HVAC system, and they’re insulated with high-quality insulation, just like the rest of your home. Many people assume that a four season room means an insulated sunroom, which it may well be, but a four season addition, at its heart, means any room you want to add on that functions as another living space. 

Cost:

As you may have assumed, a three season room is considerably less expensive to install than a four season room. Depending on the size and finishing options, a three season room could cost anywhere from $15,000 to $30,000.  

While four season rooms do cost more, you get more use out of them, as you’re able to use them year round, and they’re integrated with your heating and cooling system. It’s hard to nail down an exact price on a four season room, but know that your options are endless. Your price will vary depending on how big your addition is and the materials you use.  

Now that you know some of the more technical differences between three and four season rooms, it should be a little easier to decide which will work best for the project you have in mind. Once you decide, give Home Pro of West Michigan a call! We have all of the tools and materials to build you exactly the addition you’re looking for, in an efficient and timely manner.  

 

What to consider before starting an addition project:

An addition is a great way to extend or expand on a home that you already love. Whether you need another bedroom for your youngest child, or Grandma is thinking of moving in, an addition is a big project. It takes a lot of time and planning to ensure that you get exactly the addition you’re looking for, and there’s a lot of factors to take into consideration. Here’s a handy list of things you should think about before you decide to break ground on your new addition:

Will the addition add value to your home?

Even if you’re not planning to sell your home right now, somewhere down the line it’s bound to happen. And it’s a great benefit for you to improve your home’s value if you ever refinance or take out a home equity line of credit. While additions usually return less than remodels, it’s still a good idea to think about what type of addition might add the most value to your home.

If you want to maximize your payback, you should check out your neighborhood. What amenities are highly sought after? What do most of your neighbors have that your home doesn’t? If your home doesn’t have a master suite, and most of your neighbors do, then that’s a good investment that will provide you the greatest payback. It’s a great idea to make sure you’re considering all of these options before you commit to any home addition.

Is there a cheaper way to get what you want?

Just because it won’t provide a payback doesn’t mean you shouldn’t add on. If it will make your life easier, and that’s what you truly want, then you should go for it, but there may be other ways that you can get what you want for a lower cost and a bigger return. Since additions are costly, and don’t generally have a huge payback, you might consider some other options before you decide on an addition.

For example, if you’re just looking for more space, it’s probably more cost effective to finish your basement or remodel the attic. Renovations tend to be cheaper, and can be just as effective at providing you with the space you need. Additionally, you can always reconfigure your current living space. Don’t forget that knocking out walls and creating open floor spaces can make homes seem like completely different areas.  

Are there zoning restrictions?

Once you’ve decided that an addition is the right choice for you, you should take a trip down to city hall. You’ll need to figure out what zoning restrictions apply to your home, as some restrict the amount of space you can add, where you can add on in your lot, and if you can build additional stories on your house. Once you know the restrictions, you’ll have a better idea of what you can do, and how much space you can add.  

Building up or out?

Understanding your zoning restrictions will help you figure out whether you can build up or out. Most people tend to build out, but in some cases that’s not possible. If you live in an older neighborhood where houses are built tightly together, then lifting the roof a few feet might do you more good.  

Where do you want to put the addition?

After you’ve figured out what restrictions you have to conform to, and which direction you’re building in, you should figure out where you want to put the addition. Where does it make sense? Where will it be the most useful? What exactly is going in your addition, and how does the structure and setting of your home best leave itself open for a new space? Where the addition goes is one of the most important decisions, so it’s a good idea to take in all factors, even ones that seem small, like where the sunlight hits the space.

Does the land allow for that?

And once you know where you want to put it, just make sure that your land will support it. It won’t be good to build on a swamp or shaky ground. You’ll also want to double check that there aren’t any city utility lines or surprises waiting underground. It’s fairly simple to get city records of your lot, or to call professional companies that can stake gas lines and other important underground piping, so you can make sure your addition won’t hit anything important.

How much do you expect to spend?

Now that you’ve figured out where it can go, you need to set a budget. This will make all of your future decisions easier, because you can decide if they fit in the budget or not. Remember that the more you build, the more it will cost, but also the bigger the home addition is, the less you’ll spend per square foot. Give yourself a little wiggle room too, because you never know when unexpected emergencies can come up or when something will go wrong. Leaving a few extra dollars for unforeseen issues will save you a lot of hassle and worry in the long run.

Can you tie the addition in?

A major problem that comes with a lot of home additions is that it can be difficult to tie the new addition into your existing house. You don’t want it to look like somebody just tacked on the addition to your house, but rather it should flow seamlessly into the rest of your home. Make sure you choose an addition that can be integrated well with what’s already there.  

Give yourself some time to consider design:

Finally, before you jump into your addition, make sure you give yourself ample time to figure out what you want.  Look at magazines, check out Pinterest, wander through your local improvement store a few times, and really think about it. Giving your project time allows the idea to settle, and you’ll be able to think clearly about what you really want for the home addition. Then, once you do start on the addition, it will be considerably easier to decorate and design, because you’ll know exactly what you want.

If you have any more questions about home additions or renovations, make sure to call the experts at Home Pro of West Michigan today! We’d love to help you decide what type of addition would best fit your home, your needs, and your budget.