Do you think you can do more with your kitchen? It happens. What may have been the perfect room to live in a few years ago might not be as ideal as it once was. Perhaps the kids have grown up and things are starting to feel a bit cramped? Perhaps you want to count your blessings and arrange more gatherings once COVID-19 has cleared off?

A kitchen extension is a lot to undertake and requires a lot of thought and consideration before it can be given the green light, but there are many reasons as to why one may be applicable for you. Here at Kitchen Warehouse, we thought we would put some of these kitchen extension ideas to our loyal customer base, so you can consider if any of these options could enhance the look of your kitchen forevermore!

How much does a kitchen extension cost?

Before we delve straight into some ideas for your kitchen extension, let’s first discuss some areas you are going to have to think about before you take the plunge. It is always recommended to be sensible with your finances, and effective budgeting will firmly let you know what can and can’t be achieved!

Similarly to “how long is a piece of string?” the truth is, you can spend as little or as much as you like on a kitchen extension. Rather than starting out by calculating your kitchen extension cost, work backwards by first determining how much you want to spend.

Here is when you can begin to explore the limitless options available and finding something that fits your vision. As a basic rule of thumb, a typical kitchen extension can cost anything from £1,000 to more than £3,000 per square metre – depending on the materials you choose, the quality of the finish and so on.

When budgeting for a kitchen extension, remember that you will also need to allow for the kitchen units, appliances, flooring and fixtures to complete it. A kitchen extension cost typically encompasses the structural alterations only, as opposed to the finished kitchen and its content.

As a ‘safety net’ of sorts, it is also advisable to budget an extra 10% to 15% over your kitchen extension cost. This is simply to ensure you have a little extra available, in case you run into any unexpected costs or complications along the way.

This may seem cautious at first, but is the best way in ensuring that you have enough in the bank when you start work!

Do I need planning permission to build a kitchen extension?

Having a plethora of kitchen extension ideas is all well and good, but what happens if you need to fulfil planning permission requirements and building regulations?

Unfortunately, this is where things get slightly tricky, as you may or may not need planning permission to go about a kitchen extension. When planning any project that alters the exterior shape or structure of your home, it is important to check with your local council whether or not a permit is needed.

Before getting started on your dream kitchen extension, take a walk down your street and note if or any other properties have extensions similar to the one you have in mind. If so, it most likely indicates that you will be permitted to proceed with the project.

If you fail to secure the planning permission you need and go ahead with your extension any way, you may be ordered to tear it down and restore your property’s prior structure at your own expense.

In recent years, the government have relaxed planning rules regarding extensions which is great news if you have a few kitchen ideas for your new space. The changes have given homeowners more flexibility to improve and increase the value of their homes. Previously, without planning permission, you could add a single-storey extension of up to 3 meters in depth for an attached property and 4m to a detached house, these distances have been doubled giving you more leniency when it comes to your kitchen extension ideas in the UK.

In many cases you can build a kitchen extension under what’s known as permitted development. This allows you to carry out specific works which meet certain criteria. Under permitted development the following rules apply:

  • You can extend a detached property by 8m to the rear if it’s a single-storey extension (6m for a semi or terraced house), or by 3m if it’s double
  • A single-storey extension can’t be higher than 4m on the ridge and the eaves, and ridge heights of any extension can’t be higher than the existing property
  • Two-storey extensions must not be closer than 7m to the rear boundary
  • Side extensions can only be single storey with a maximum height of 4m and a width no more than half of the original building
  • Any new extension must be built in the same or similar material to the existing dwelling
  • Extensions must not go forward of the building line of the original dwelling
  • In designated areas (such as areas of outstanding natural beauty, conservation areas, etc), side extensions require planning permission, and all rear extensions must be single storey
  • An extension must not result in more than half the garden being covered

It’s important to bear in mind that different rules may apply if you live in a conservation area, if your building is listed, or if you live within a National Park.

The vast majority of small to medium-sized kitchen extensions are exempt from planning permission. Even with this in mind, it is still a good idea to check with your local council first, rather than making assumptions. Even if the local authorities say you need to apply for planning permission, it is not a particularly painful or perplexing process.

Most extensions are likely to require building regulations approval. This means that your extension is checked and signed off to ensure it is safe, sound and efficient. It is also essential to have this done properly as if you ever come to sell the house, your buyer will require a copy of the building regulation approval. The inspector, who will come out from your local authority, will look at the flooring, foundations, ventilation, energy efficiency, doors, windows, drainage, electrics, external and internal walls and roof.

kitchen extension layout

Do I need an architect for my kitchen extension?

Technically speaking, it is possible to plan and go ahead with a kitchen extension without hiring an architect. If you hire an experienced local building contractor, they may provide an all-inclusive package where no additional architect input is required. Or if you have the knowledge and experience needed to design your own dream kitchen from scratch, go right ahead!

In most instances, however, planning your kitchen extension in meticulous detail with an experienced architect is advisable. You may have a definite vision in mind for your dream kitchen, but is it really suitable for your property? Perhaps there is an even better option available you have not yet considered?

Make sure that you think long and hard about which architect you wish to trust, as any misjudgements here may prove costly. You could either be denied an extension that is perfectly feasible or realise that your plans won’t work out as anticipated when it’s too late.

Kitchen extension layout ideas

The key to successful kitchen design lies in prioritising the working triangle.  This means ensuring there is a clear and convenient path between your sink, fridge and hob to allow free movement. Imagine lines drawn between these three points to form the shape of a triangle. Ideally, no side of the triangle should be less than 1.2m or greater than 2.7m. The sum of all the sides should be somewhere between 4m and 7.9m. Ensuring you have plenty of countertop space is also essential, as is avoiding the temptation to squeeze too much into every inch of available space.

If you are looking for some inspiration regarding uses of your kitchen extension, then you have come to the right place. You can use it to turn your kitchen into a fully functioning office, a place to socialise post COVID-19 or to add some new lighting to refresh your space.

Kitchen office extension – perhaps you have made the permanent shift to working from home? If so, you can look to build your new desk into a wall that can be knocked down, opening up your space for a more secure option for the future. This will allow you to have a constant work desk, without having to pack up if you want to eat food with the family.

A perfect place to socialise – if you are planning on hosting many more gatherings once the COVID-19 pandemic has passed, then you might want to put the groundwork in now, so you can optimise your space when the time comes. Perhaps you can look to make your kitchen open plan, extending to the living space so you can feel in touch with the people in your home at all times.

Adding unique lighting – skylights are a great way of ensuring that natural daylight seeps through the ceiling to ensure that your kitchen area is bright and spacious, especially during the summer months. Some hanging lights above your kitchen doors might also be a great alternative for those dark, winter nights if you have a high ceiling. With these lights, you have somewhat of a blank canvas, and are afforded the opportunity to go as safe or as wild as you like!

kitchen extension

How do I make the most of the space in my kitchen space?

Let’s face it, the need for more space is the driving force behind all kitchen extension ideas. Of course, by their very nature any ‘extension’ will deliver just that – more space. However, there are some clever ways of making it feel that you have even more space than you actually have.

One such approach is to allow the extension to seamlessly blend the inside and outside space. Sliding doors opening from the kitchen to the garden are the ideal way to open space up. Having so much glass also gives you another clear advantage – maximum light. This will keep any space feeling light, open and airy.

Open plan kitchens are one of the most sought after features of modern properties. This is hardly a surprise, considering the light and spacious designs they offer, and the versatility they bring to the table. Because of this, many kitchen extension ideas focus on converting the existing kitchen into a space for open plan living.

Typically, an open plan kitchen combines the kitchen and the dining area. Of course, there’s nothing to stop you incorporating a lounge setting into yours too.

Knocking a wall through is an obvious way to form an open plan space. It’s also a great way to introduce plenty of natural light. Glass is very effective in letting light in when you partner it with aluminium, the effect can be especially striking. It keeps the room awash with light and creates a contemporary feel.

One thing you should have more space for with a new kitchen extension is storage. An open shelving section can be a great way of making storage both appealing and accessible. With extra storage, you can spare yourself all those wasted moments searching for things in the bottom of drawers or at the back of kitchen cupboards.

Keep frequently used items, from utensils to your favourite cookery books on an open shelf so that things are close at hand. Your kitchen extension storage should be planned with care to ensure the best possible and most convenient experience on a daily basis. If you have the space, it’s a great idea to bank storage units and kitchen cabinets together in one space, rather than having them dotted about in a random fashion.

Get in touch with Kitchen Warehouse

Here at Kitchen Warehouse, we are on hand to offer the very best kitchen doors and units online to help you apply an excellent complement to your new kitchen extension. If you would like to ask us any questions regarding our products or all things kitchens, then be sure to get in touch today.

Simply give us a call on 01765 640 000 or email us at contact@kitchenwarehouseltd.com and we will reply as soon as we can. You can also fill out our online enquiry form for a quick and informed response from one of the team.