Household crowding is a condition where the number of occupants exceeds the capacity of the dwelling space. Adverse physical and mental health outcomes are derived from inadequate space whether it is measured as room size, number of bedrooms, or floor area. Crowding depends not only on the number of people in the home, but their age and relationships.
Historically, crowding was a marker of poverty and social deprivation. However, recently increased occupancy of homes is a response to uncontrollable factors like infectious disease such as Covid, shopping online to avoid the mall and grocery stores, or staycations due to expensive vacation costs. People are staying home for longer periods of time than ever before in history. This lack of privacy from constant crowding is linked to negative psychological consequences, undesirable social interactions, poor educational performance, and decreased work productivity. Cramped living conditions harms the family.
A home addition benefits your family by opening the space. The type of addition is important. Adding a Master Suite and turning the old master bedroom into a playroom will provide a return on investment (ROI) of 63 percent. An extra bathroom has an ROI of 65 percent. Updating a kitchen has a ROI 75 percent. Adding a second story with a new roof can double the home’s value. Bump-out additions add extra space to existing rooms at 1/3 the cost of a full addition of an extra room.
Front porches run $8,000 with an ROI 65 percent. An unheated sunroom will cost about $15,000 with an ROI 60 percent. A four-season room is hooked into the home’s heating and cooling systems and run around $20,000 with an ROI of 80 percent. A Farmer’s Porch is an open porch typically on New England style homes that spans across the front of the home or wraps around the sides. A Farmer’s porch will range from $8,000 to $50,000 with a ROI of 84 percent.
Room conversions are the trickiest change to make. They seem easy to repurpose an attic or garage, but poorly done conversions cost money raising fuel energy costs and can lower your home’s value. Additions and modifications to your home add space, functionality, and resale value to your home. Professional contractors make sure all the work is up to code and can pass inspections. Failure to get the proper inspections will impair buyers’ ability to get financing in the future.
In Sussex County, the Building Code Inspections Office is responsible for pre-approving plans before any work can begin on any single-family, commercial, or multi-family projects. County approved plans must be always on site and accessible to the building inspector. All pre-engineered products and building components must have certification from their manufacturer. All third-party inspections such as engineered footing reports, water proofing, pre-drywall insulation, energy reports, truss repairs, and final energy reports must be provided to the building inspector to pass inspection.
The building inspector will leave a blue sticker on a window or in the electrical panel. The blue sticker indicates a passed inspection and will bear the project’s application number, the inspector’s initials, the date, and type of inspection. Hiring a professional contractor ensures that all inspections are handled professionally.