High -End Renovations and Extensions – Think Inside the Box
Town planning, TABA, TAMA 38 and urban renewal are some of the topics we covered in the last blog. But what if you can’t count on these options to increase the value and aesthetics of your property?
A comprehensive makeover inside your property can turn it into an asset, either for your own enjoyment or comfort, or for resale. High-end residential renovations can make your home a haven and bring them into the 21st century, but involve a number of extra challenges – and rewards.
Renovation or Extension – What’s the Difference?
Israel is notorious for its red tape, and while the result may be worth it, the process can be time consuming. Structural changes, building-on to an existing structure, and alterations that affect shared infrastructure, all require building permits.
If you think inside the box, and make only interior changes, even if you redo your entire home, you won’t need building permits. You’ll cut in half the time it takes to renovate, and still obtain a fresh, new home space.
Regardless of whether you require a building permit or not, design is the first step. A good architect will plan the space based on your needs, and will offer you alternate layouts until you find the one that works best for you.
A renovation can’t be based on architectural plans alone and should incorporate specifications from all relevant professionals. Electrical, air conditioning, plumbing and other relevant consultants are essential at this stage of the process.
Heating and cooling systems – such as underfloor heating and central air-conditioning – as well as smart home technology – should also be incorporated at the design stage. Your architect must incorporate and coordinate all of these consultants and systems during the design stage.
Turning a plan on paper to a house made of bricks and mortar (or more appropriately for Israel, cement and Jerusalem stone) relies on choosing a good contractor. Your architect should be able to recommend someone who is trustworthy, familiar with current building practices, and able to work amenably with people. A good contractor will also maintain a tight schedule and smoothly integrate his subcontractors into the project.
No contractor, no matter how good or honest, can catch every mistake or defect during construction. Even though part of an architect’s job, particularly in high-end construction, is to make periodic visits and oversee progress of the project on the ground, it’s vital to have a qualified building supervisor who is on-site every day and will ensure the quality of work and adherence to all specifications. Your architect should be able to recommend a few reliable supervisors.
Natural stone and marble, kitchen and closet carpentry, hardwood or tile flooring, doors, windows and metalwork are some of the items that require installation during or after construction. These determine the look and atmosphere of your home and can transform the end result from pedestrian to transcendent, but range widely in quality, price and customer service. Your architect should be able to guide you in finding the best suppliers and craftsmen within your budget.
Inverter air conditioners, energy-efficient split-control central air, heat exchange pumps that offer low-cost water heating, and underfloor heating that maintains a constant and comfortable temperature throughout winter – are just a few of the innovative climate control systems available today. Correct planning can integrate these systems into the design of your home, according to your family’s specific requirements.
Smart House Systems
The world is constantly evolving with increasingly higher-tech home systems. You can have full control over various systems in your home from any room in the house, or even through your mobile phone or an online computer. Air-conditioning, lighting, alarm systems, heating, blinds, audio systems and Shabbos timers can be seamlessly incorporated, controlled, monitored and adjusted, conveniently and remotely– from anywhere and at any time.
Selecting the right furniture is like choosing a basic wardrobe. Some people like a classic look, while others prefer contemporary or eclectic. But the way you dress your home – the furniture and accessories you choose – are a reflection of your home’s character and your own unique personality. Balance off-the-shelf solutions with custom-made pieces to reduce costs but still make the space personal and charming. Upholstering wall panels with the same fabric as your