House Extensions
17th March 2016

Are you looking after your nest egg this Easter?

17th March 2016

Lewis Visuals can help you hatch up a plan!Easter nest egg

Your home is one of the biggest investments you’ll ever make, so it’s natural to want to get the most out of it financially.

In a similar vein, it is also the centre of your world: Each day begins there, and after a hard day’s work it becomes your evening sanctuary. Therefore getting the most out of it emotionally is also important.

Striking a balance between home improvement to better suit your lifestyle and to encourage later financial reward is important.

The main reason many move home is in the quest for space. It is often wrongly assumed that building an extension is too costly. It actually adds serious value to your property, and you don’t have to leave behind the memories, your neighbours or your favourite local shop owner!

Where to begin?

Chicken or egg/ builder or designer, who do you go to first? Generally a builder would prefer to price from drawings and will send you to an Architectural Designer. We have a whole team of recommended builders that would be happy to work alongside us during the design process, we also have this hand Construction Cost Calculator on our website. A good designer will breathe new life into your property. They see spaces in a way that us mere mortals often cannot.

By adopting the support of an architectural designer, you can achieve the much sought after additional space without having to move an inch.

After carefully considering your needs and intentsions with the space, your budget and the space’s attributes, your architectural designer will construct an inspired, practical and stimulating design: Achieving the balance of ideal home and ideal investment.

How the 2016 budget affects home owners

Easter stamp duty

As George Osborne descends on Downing Street with his red briefcase, we wait with bated breath as to how exactly the budget will affect home owners.

We will need to wait for events to fully unfold on 16th March to learn the extent of the budget. We have picked out a few key factors:

  • The Chancellor is set to raise the threshold at which people start paying the higher 40p tax rate. This will mean hundreds of thousands benefitting from being in a lower tax bracket, including teachers, nurses and police officers (to name but a few professions). The Help To Buy scheme has been put in place to help first time buyers.
  • The increase in first time buyers may also surge an increase in new homes.
  • Investment buyers have been flocking to complete their property purchase by the end of this month to avoid the three per cent stamp duty surcharge coming in for second homes at the beginning of April, reflecting also-increasing purchase prices.
  • Changes in mortgage interest relief could push many into losses by the end of this parliament. If this coincides with a period of rising interest rates, yields would go below zero on average, according to one estimate from Property Partner, the crowdsourcing property website.
  • The initial fall in projected profit is because of a reform of a tax break offered to investors on their mortgage interest, which is currently deducted from the rental income received for tax purposes. By the end of the decade, the tax bracket and amount owned will be calculated on the whole rental income, with a flat rate of 20 per cent tax relief paid separately.
  • These impacts on investment buyers may reduce the pace and cost of house price rises, thus help first-time buyers. Removing an apparent competitive advantage for buy-to-let.

Our top tips:

  • If you’re and investment buyer avoid increased TAX by setting up a Limited Company and then you would only pay a lower corporation tax rate on the profit.
  • If you’re a home owner and you’re looking to buy a second home perhaps consider maximising the assets in your current home first (to drawn down on later) and if you can avoid joint mortgages. If you and your partner have a separate mortgage each you could avoid an additional 3% on stamp duty.
  • If you’re a first time buyer sit tight and whilst you wait for the market to be more accommodating for you look into Help To Buy scheme.

The extra, freed-up money will allow homeowners a degree of flexibility, giving them the option to reinvest into their properties.

Isn’t planning permission a long and arduous process?

Easter PP2




Easter PP3



Not necessarily! In fact, sometimes planning permission is not necessary at all. Many are unaware of ‘permitted development rights’.



Permitted development rights authorises extensions and changes of use of a building without the need for planning permission. For example you may be allowed to change a space from an office or agricultural building into a residential dwelling.


Please note that permitted development rights may not always be allowed. Certain locations require permission where ordinarily it would not be necessary, such as conservation areas, areas of outstanding natural beauty, national parks etc. It is strongly recommended that you seek advice from us Lewis Visuals or your local planning authority prior to embarking on any property renovation or extension project.


The Lewis Visuals team are on-hand to answer any questions you may have about anything in today’s blog. Protect and grow your nest egg by choosing the best! 01252 714 985

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