Thanks to the increasing cost of buying a property and soaring care home prices, more and more families are thinking to build an annexe as a solution for their families housing needs.
A recent report from the Valuation Office Agency, suggests that there was a 16% increase in the construction of Granny flats in recent years, with over 39,000 being built in England and Wales.
In order to encourage the building of annexes and intergenerational living, a few incentives have been introduced by the government, such as scrapping proposed plans for stamp duty increases.
Building an annexe in the garden can be a huge decision for all parties involved and careful thought must be taken in order to get it right. So what are the key things to consider?
Obviously part of the reason to build a granny flat is to move family closer together and to provide support in old age. This new proximity sometimes needs management in order to keep things running smoothly. One key to success is to make sure everybody maintains a level of independence. This is something which is often cited as an important factor for many of our customers. Our buildings always have there own access and facilities such as kitchen and bathrooms, allowing for an independent lifestyle, with the advantages of having family close-by if necessary.
In 2014 the government made the decision to scrap the unpopular and unjust decision to charge council tax twice on both the main building and annexe. Now with the ruling made, there are a number of considerations when it comes to council tax. Firstly, it is likely that no council tax will need to be paid. If the occupier is a dependant (over the age of 65, permanently disabled, or mentally impaired) and is using the building as their main home then council tax is exempt. If these stipulations are not met then it is the case that council tax is paid at 50% of the main house’s banding, if the building is used by a family member.
Who pays the bills?
It is possible for bills to be shared between the two properties, with electrics and water possible to have on the same bill. It is also possible to have these separated, with a different meter for each building. This is something to consider when building and can be discussed with your local supplier. Having things separate might be the simplest solution for many people in order to keep track of costs on the two households.
When to start the process?
Although it is never a good idea to rush these decisions, once a need has been established it is always best to get things moving as quickly as possible. Moving house can be a stressful process so its always going to be a better idea to do this when you or your relatives are as mobile as possible and are not in desperate need of accommodation change in order to reduce the stress of the move.
Choosing your builders
Choosing the correct builder for your project is critical to the success of your build. At granny annexe, we are especially proud of our team of professional builders and craftsmen who have been constructing annexes for over 10 years. Having an experienced company who are specialised in this sort of building is something we would always recommend.
Planning for the future
It’s always wise to plan for the future when building an annexe. Even if mobility is not an issue, in the beginning, this is something that can become important later on. Having ramp access is something we often recommend and can be incorporated into the design of the decking. We can also provide handrails and wider door access where necessary. It’s better to get these things sorted out in the beginning before you need to make costly alterations later.
Any building work is a complex process and requires good communication between all parties. In order to promote this from the beginning, we offer a free site survey to give our customers the chance to sit down and discuss the reasons for building and which style and size would be the best fit.
While it’s fresh in your mind why not download a free brochure