If you ask your 5-year-old at bedtime whether they’d like one story or two stories, the answer probably won’t surprise you. But what about one ‘storey’ versus two storeys?

We’re talking, of course, about house extensions. If you’re considering going down this road, you’re doing it for extra space, extra privacy, extra value, and a better lifestyle – but should you extend out, or should you extend up (or both)?

One storey?

Extending on the existing ground level is obviously the simpler option, as long as you have the land for it. You might just add an extra bedroom or another living area, and typically the cost is significantly lower than for a whole extra level upstairs. The construction itself is also simpler: simpler foundations, simpler structural work.

The pros:

  • A simple extension can be added to any part of the existing building
  • Suitable for most land sizes
  • Simply adding an extra bedroom, bathroom or living area keeps the costs down
  • Simpler, cheaper and safer to build
  • Less engineering, design and council requirements
  • More appropriate for families requiring wheelchair access etc.

The cons:

  • Less scope for adding property value
  • Less space to explore the full potential of an extension
  • Leaves less room for the garden etc.

Two storeys?

While the idea of a grand extra floor can be exciting, there’s no doubt about the extra complexity and cost. Council permission like a building permit can also be more difficult and complex to receive.

However, the extra effort is usually worth it – particularly when it comes to home value should you want to sell in the future.

But the benefits of a second storey house extension just keep on coming. You could extend both downstairs and upstairs, and add some separation between parents and children for those growing families.

The pros:

  • Most existing buildings are structurally suitable
  • Major scope and options for added living space
  • Potential for additions both upstairs and down
  • More scope for privacy/separation for growing families
  • Impressive street appearance and significantly added value
  • Potential for amazing views from the upper floor
  • Does not encroach on existing garden etc.
  • Noise reduction for the upstairs sleeping areas

The cons:

  • Potential problems with planning/overlooking neighbours
  • Extra cost/construction complexity

The verdict: One storey or two, it’s your choice

At the end of the day, your home extension is in your hands. While it can be more difficult to achieve planning permission for your upstairs vision, and the construction can take longer and cost more, whether you go this route or simply extend outwards is about one thing: Value. In other words, how much is each extension option going to cost, what benefits will that cost deliver for your current lifestyle and your longer-term vision, and is it all worth it?

Your House Extension Specialists

If you're building a new home, house extension or renovation, RFT Solutions offer peace of mind. Our goal is to save you time, money and achieve a result you love.

If it’s all too much to decide, RFT Solutions’ one and two-storey home extension experts are right here to help! Whether you’re in Malvern, Lilydale, Camberwell, Port Melbourne, Glen Iris, Northcote, St Kilda, or anywhere in Melbourne and beyond, getting a home extension done has never been so easy with the help of our design and drafting services, our assistance in getting all the required permits and arranging the best and most cost-effective builders, and our all-inclusive, ‘go to whoa’ approach – from your very first call to the handover of the keys!

So if you love where you live and you’re thinking of extending up or out (or both!), give the Melbourne building designers at RFT Solutions a call today to discuss your home extension plans.