A renovation and home extension builder’s guide to future-proofing your home

home extension builder guide to future-proof homes

As renovation and home extension builders, we get a lot of questions about getting the best value for money when renovating and extending homes. It’s a great question and definitely something most homeowners want to achieve. Most of the time, when thinking about the best value for money, people will generally think about the finishes and the size.


But there’s another element that is equally important to think about and may not deliver a good return on investment in the short term but will pay off in the long term. And that is renovating your home to allow for future changes.


What does that mean exactly?


To make it easy, we’ve put together a guide on future-proofing your home, including all the elements you should think about and how you can adopt a forward-thinking approach, ensuring your home remains functional, sustainable, and adaptable for years to come.

future proof your home

Flexibility & Adaptability?


When designing your home renovations and extension, it’s important to consider the flexibility and adaptability of the design over time.


Most Australian homeowners consider renovations and extensions because of family changes. For example, they’ve either grown out of their current space due to new additions to the family, or their current home is no longer workable because of kids growing into teenagers and teenagers into adults.


Renovating your home in the short term to accommodate a growing family is great, but forward-thinking down the track and considering your home and how it can adapt as your toddlers become children and your children become teenagers can help you think differently about the design.


Opting for an open floor plan that allows for easy reconfiguration of spaces is a great way to incorporate flexibility into your home design. Consider multi-purpose rooms that can serve different functions over time. By providing flexibility in your home’s layout, you can accommodate changing needs and avoid costly renovations down the line.


Another element that needs to be considered is our own ageing. As much as we don’t like to admit it, we will age. And as we age, our needs and the requirements we need from our home also needs to change.


This means we might need extra supports in the bathrooms, wider doorways, non-slip flooring, access ramps and other accessibility features. The building standards in each state are also considering these requirements, and the way we build and renovate homes is changing in line with a more future-focused approach.


The requirements under the National Construction Code (NCC) for ‘livable housing design’ means we need to change the way we design our homes and make our homes more easily adaptable to the changing needs of the occupants.


New homes going forward will be required to consider livable housing design features, and undertaking considerable renovations and extensions will also mean these elements need to be considered.


Renovations and extensions are when you should be thinking about incorporating universal design principles into your existing home that focus on accessibility, safety, and convenience. By considering these elements during your home upgrades, you can comfortably age in place and avoid costly modifications later.

home extension builders sustainability

Sustainability & Energy efficiency


Australia’s commitment to energy efficiency and sustainable design is an essential consideration in any home renovation and extension project. Depending on the age, there may be little to no sustainability features in your home. This means it may not even have any insulation, let alone water-saving devices or energy-efficient lighting. If it’s more than thirty years old, we’re guessing it has a fair few gaps as well resulting in a lot of air leaks.


Even if your home is just ten years old, it’s likely to need an energy-efficient update. Sustainability has come a long way in ten years, and new requirements mean your home may not even be compliant with new NCC energy-efficient homes energy standards.


So, when undertaking a renovation or home extension, consider all your sustainability options and what energy-efficient features you can incorporate into your home that will both save you money in running costs and keep your home current with energy efficiency requirements.


Some sustainability and energy-efficient features to consider include:


  • Insulation
  • Solar panels
  • LED lighting
  • Water tanks and water-saving devices
  • Double glazed windows
  • Passive home design and designs that incorporate cross ventilation
  • Materials and finishes that are both sourced and produced under sustainable conditions


Working towards a high star rating under the Nationwide House Energy Rating Scheme (NatHERS) is a good place to start when considering sustainability and future-proofing your home.

Renovation and home extension builders - Smart Technology

Smart Technology


Along with sustainability, technology is advancing at an unprecedented pace, and while it’s hard to imagine how it may impact our homes in the future, it’s something to consider. Planning your renovation and home extension to accommodate emerging technologies, such as electric vehicle charging stations, smart appliances and integrated home automation systems, is almost an essential requirement now and as renovation and home extension builders, it’s something we are asked about and recommend often.


If you live in an older home, it can be hard to imagine all the things that smart technology can do. A smart home can adjust your thermostat, turn on and turn off your lights, set your security, let you see who is at your front door, unlock and lock your doors, run you a bath… The list is almost endless.


Even if you don’t need or use these elements now, if you incorporate the technology into your home upgrades, it will allow for easier adaptation in the future without major structural modifications and electrical upgrades down the track. Simply incorporating the infrastructure to convert your home to a smart home will also add to the value of your home.

adaptability - future-proof homes

From a renovation and home extension builders perspective, future-proofing your home is money well spent


As renovation and home extension builders, we have worked on numerous projects and the homes that will stand the test of time are the ones where forward planning and future-proofing have been thought about and elements incorporated into the renovation. Of course, everyone needs to take into account the budget when it comes time to renovate, but future-proofing your home will be money well spent and will be a good investment long into the future.

For more information and a chat about how we can incorporate any of these elements into your home renovation or extension, get in touch, and we can book a time to talk.