Owning a home is always a great source of pride. Your home is in many ways your castle and will be part of your family for years, decades or even longer in some cases. But living in a home for an extended period of time does create some challenges.

The home you bought as a young couple might become inadequate once a family comes on the scene. Ultimately the empty nest syndrome occurs as they family grows and disperses to start families of their own. Technology and systems are developed that have turned your original appliances into antiques. The world spins and as with life those things that once delighted you now cause annoyance. The answer for many is to upgrade the home or add an addition to the property.

The kitchen of any home is a key, vital component. It’s the place where the family gathers, meals are prepared and stories are swapped. Kitchen expansions are one of the most popular additions homeowners can make. Perhaps the olive green appliances you bought new all those years ago have become an eyesore. Maybe you’ve always wanted an adjoining sunroom to savor your morning coffee. Perhaps you need new cupboards that are easier to access due to reduced mobility. Any number of changes can enhance the enjoyment and ease of use of your home.

As a family changes over time perhaps an aging parent has become an issue. If you have an under-utilized or unfinished basement then the addition of a separate legal suite might be the answer. Always check with City Hall to learn what steps are required, but a properly planned and executed suite can be a real asset, as a place for a parent or teen, or as a mortgage helper.

A garage is another part of the home that offers all sorts of potential for home additions. Perhaps you want to add a second story as extra storage space. Perhaps the second story can be used as rental accommodation, or the headquarters for a home-based business. A garage upgrade is a simple way to add square footage to the property without actually expanding on the physical footprint of the home. As with any major structural upgrade check with the Building Inspector to ensure no bylaws are going to be affected by the planned work.

Perhaps a room that was once a child’s bedroom can be rebuilt into a sewing or hobby room. Maybe it is the ideal place for a library, media room or home office. All space within a home is a potential asset, think about what you need or want, now and in the future, and then take stock of the space you currently have access to. Planning and envisioning in advance is the best way to get the addition that serves your needs and budget best.

Finally, unless you’re a very skilled amateur carpenter it’s a very good idea to shop around for the team you’ll need to design and complete the upgrade. Do an online search for local construction companies. Ask friends or relatives who have had a renovation project completed for their recommendations. An upgrade or addition can be a big job, check around and find the right construction professionals for your project. A quality addition can be a real asset, just take the time to plan it out carefully beforehand.