Make More Room Without Moving or Building

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The Great Australian Dream of the quarter-acre block (roughly 1000 square metres) is, sadly,  long behind us, with the median square lot size in Melbourne now just 430 square metres, down from 650 square metres in 2000.

However, our desire for spacious living remains. What options do we have to maximise our internal space without adding an extra room or moving to a larger home?


Attic Conversions

Sometimes, the only way is up! An attic conversion can be considerably cheaper than a full extension, and can add value to your home if you convert the space into an extra bedroom.

Other ideas include more storage, a studio or home office, a home cinema or playroom, or a guest bedroom for when friends and family visit.

Depending on the size of the space and the pitch of the roof, you may need Council approval. You should also engage a quality builder, preferable one with experience in these kinds of conversions.

Basement Conversions

Again, this option is for those with a home of a certain size

Your basement can be turned into a spare living area, wine cellar, home gym or a room for extra storage. Converting an existing basement will cost a lot less than excavating a space under your home.

Factors that may add to the cost include drainage, the make-up of your home’s sub-floor, the conditions of the ground, the local water table, and site access.

Creating a room with plumbing will also add to the cost and the complexity of the project.

It’s wise to do your research to find out how much capital value a conversion of your attic or basement will add to your property. Conversions in areas where land is at a premium will reap the most benefit.

Hallways, Nooks and Crannies

If your hallway is wide enough, and with some clever styling and usage of space, you may be able to create a whole new room in your home.

Build bookshelves against the hallway wall or simply a set of shelves to create more storage space. Think about adding benches or seating with built-in storage to free up even more room.  You can even add a desk and a chair or a comfortable armchair to turn your hallway into study or reading nook.

Divide and Conquer

If you have a large room that is difficult to fully utilise due to its size or dimensions, adding a wall or portable room divider can help you turn one room into two.

While a wall is a more permanent (and costly) option, screen or room divider can be used to make one room into two, then stored if your requirements change (or if you are preparing your home for sale).

A room divider can be used to create another bedroom, living area or storage space without the cost and hassle of building a wall.

Not Just for Harry Potter

The unused triangular space underneath a flight of stairs is called a ‘spandrel’ and, if big enough, can be a useful extra space in your home. Install shelves and a small desk and turn it into a home office or study nook.

If you have the plumbing capacity, this area can be turned into a powder room or extra toilet – handy if you have a large family or frequent visitors.

Other ideas for this space include a pantry, laundry, pet space, library, wine storage or play area.

Garage Conversions

Has your garage become a junk palace? Converting it to another bedroom, kitchen, granny flat or storage area can be a great way to make the most of existing space.

There is a bit of planning involved with this one though to turn a space for your car into a habitable environment. You will need to consider:

  • Insulation
  • Plumbing
  • Electrical fittings
  • Building permits and building works (including the legal considerations of being an owner builder)
  • Adding windows and doors
  • New furniture, painting and landscaping

When thinking about a garage conversion you should also consider how much capital value it will add to your property and any tax implications should you rent out your newly-renovated space.

If you are lucky enough to live in free-standing home with the option to build a rooftop terrace, this is also an option to create more space and expand your lifestyle options.

Whether you are thinking of renovating, have the process under way, or have made alterations to your home and now want to put it on the market, we can help.

Our inspectors are experienced industry professionals who know the issues you will encounter.

We can conduct:

  • A Pre-Project Condition Report
  • Staged Renovation Inspections
  • Owner Builder Defects (137b) Reports (essential for your Section 32)

We offer:

With over 20,000 inspections under our belt and an established reputation,  The Home Inspection Hub provides peace of mind for the biggest purchase you will ever make.

Call us today on 1300 071 283 or email and see how we can assist you with your next renovation project.