Growing Pains

Are you outgrowing your family cottage?

If you are finding that your cottage is bulging at the seams when the whole family visits together, it may be time to consider expanding.

There are a few options to consider, such as building out, adding a second level or possibly a separate building all together.

The first thing would be to find your property survey. This survey will show your side yards, your setbacks from the road and from the water if applicable. The guidelines have changed in the past few years and have become more restrictive.

Although your local municipal office will give you a copy of the requirements and necessary documents, you are still best to contact a consultant who deals with this on a regular basis. These consultants can manage the entire building permit process, including plotting the new addition or bunkie onto your existing survey, as well as determining if your septic system will be enough to handle more bedrooms and bathrooms, or if it needs to be upgraded.

Determine a realistic budget, and allow a contingency fund for the unexpected. This can be an expensive venture, which is why a consultant is highly recommended – I use one on my builds.

Beyond your septic, consider your hydro service size, and your HVAC system in case they might need to be upgraded also.

There is a lot more to it than just drawing pretty pictures, so list your must-haves and your wants separately, and start the process early. Regardless if you are looking at an addition or a bunkie, this is still a major undertaking, so using the appropriate people and being organized is crucial.

With spring soon upon us, you should start now and with a bit of luck you will have it completed in time to enjoy it with the entire family this summer.

By Our Resident DIY Guru Dave Linkert, Port 32 Marshall Homes, Bobcaygeon

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