Build Up, Not Out: Adding a Second Story to Your Home

Many of the older homes here in Northern Virginia are smaller than what today’s families want and need. And the houses can be built on smaller lots, especially the closer towards Washington, D.C. they are located. So when families want to add space, they don’t have the option of going to the front, back or sides…they have to build up, not out, adding a second story to the home.

Here are some reason why you should consider adding a second story to your house.

You love your location

One way to get more space is to move to a larger home. But you love where you live! You don’t want to disrupt the kids from their schools, the neighbors have become great friends, and the area is so convenient to all you do.

You increase your home’s value

Larger square footage certainly adds to the value of your home. So does a second story. Plus, you don’t love valuable yard space. When you eventually sell your property, future buyers will appreciate the second story and your home will be a more desirable purchase.

You can design what you want

All homes have things that you wish you could fix. Here’s your chance! While adding the second story, take advantage of reconfiguring your home’s overall layout, or modifying the existing structure to make it more of what you really want in a home. Remove walls, relocate room functions, add windows, or just have fun with the design options.

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Second story addition going up.

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Same house before second story addition.

 

What are your options for a second story addition?

Although there is room for creative design, there are also building regulations and codes that need to be followed. Your design also depends on your budget and the home’s location. Taking these into account, there are a couple of choices in a second story addition: a full addition/remodel or an expansion.

Full second story addition

A full second story addition is ideal for one-level houses like a ranch-style home where an additional floor is required. A full addition can also mean a total revamp of an existing upper floor. It can reconfigure existing space or totally change the look and use of a home.

Adding a large space may require additional support systems including plumbing, HVAC and electrical installations or upgrades. New heating and air conditioning zones may need to be added. You may also want to take this time to install green or energy-efficient systems, windows, and thermal insulation.

Second story expansion

A second story addition doesn’t have to involve the entire upper floor. It can mean expanding out horizontally, such as adding a room over an existing garage or porch.

Related: 2021 Home Addition Costs

Additional things to consider with your second story addition

  • When you add a second story to your home, expect a disruption to your lifestyle. Because the roof will need to be removed, your family will need to relocate to temporary housing during the remodel or renovation for approximately six months.
  • Depending upon the size and style of your addition, you may also expect that additional structures will need to be put into place to support the extra weight. This can require modifications to the existing walls and foundation.
  • You will also need a staircase to the second floor, which will reduce the floor space in one of your first-level rooms or require modification on the ground floor.
  • Keep in mind that you will want your second story addition to match the rest of the house. Choosing matching siding and windows can create a seamless look. If these items are no longer available, however, you may want or need to change out the windows and siding on the first floor to match the new addition.

Choose a Design/Build Remodeling Company

Before you do anything, talk to an experienced professional, like Schroeder Design/Build. As our name says, we offer comprehensive architectural design, interior design and construction services for homeowners throughout Northern Virginia, and we’ll be glad to schedule a virtual or in-house, no-obligation consultation to talk about your second story addition. In the meanwhile, check out our Additions Portfolio for inspiration.

Contact Schroeder Design/Build today at 703-449-1700 or send us an email to Info@SchroederDesignBuild.com