What is a porch extension?

Creating a porch at the front of your home is a great way to improve the security of your property, redesign a bland frontage, or add extra space for your family to use. There are multiple options and designs, and which you choose is likely to depend on the style and aesthetic of your home, and what you would like to use this space for.

Double opening doors create a grander entrance than a single front door, and can create an entrance hallway should your front door open directly into a living space. This is ideal for additional storage, keeping outdoor shoes, or as a convenient space to hang coats.

Other porches act as a room in their own right – a glazed porch can provide a sunroom and be a great alternative to building a rear extension or conservatory if you wish to conserve your garden area, or have minimal space to build on elsewhere.

If you need something larger than a porch but still relatively small,. find out more about small extension costs. Alternatively, if you own a garage why not learn more about the cost of garage extensions.

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Why do homeowners build porch extensions?

A porch adds appeal to the appearance of your home, and for many properties with a simple entrance can add something special to your house that sets it apart from neighbouring homes should you be looking to sell.

Most homeowners create a porch extension to fulfil a specific purpose, which could include:

  • Increased security with robust locking systems and a second set of secure doors at the front of your property.
  • A dividing space between your living areas and the outside, particularly if your front door opens directly into a room.
  • Storage space for outdoor items such as shoes, boots, coats and umbrellas.
  • Reading, sitting or sunroom area to bring in more natural light.

How much does a porch extension cost?

The cost of creating a porch area depends on the size of the extension and the materials you choose. Most porches cost from £1,000 per m2 so are a lower cost extension than many other options. A typical porch extension costs around £3,500.

Many porches are fully glazed or have a glass roof. This adds a feeling of spaciousness to your ground floor, improves the amount of natural light coming in, and can deliver a comfortable and warm relaxation area if the front of your property is not overlooked or on a busy roadway.

Porches are also used to inject colour and style into blander property designs and can be built in any variety of colours and finishes to bring individuality to your home.

How long does it take to build a porch extension?

The time it takes to build a new porch extension depends on the choice of material. A simple, lightweight aluminium porch can take as little as a week to build; whereas a uPVC glazed porch area will take closer to 2 weeks.

If you opt for a brick-built, enclosed porch – more practical for storage solutions and security – this will take a similar timescale and an average-sized porch will be erected in 1-2 weeks.

The small footprint of a porch belies the usefulness of adding this extra storage capacity and can provide an aesthetic upgrade to your property frontage.

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What factors impact the cost of a porch extension?

When obtaining a quote for extension, Some of the cost factors in building a porch include:

  • Whether you are hiring a contractor, or plan to complete the build yourself
  • What materials your porch is built from
  • How large your porch space needs to be

Designing a porch space depends on the period of your home, and ideally should be created in sympathy with the architecture and appearance of the area to blend in nicely.

Aluminium porches take very little time to build and will cost around £2,000 to build. A lean-to porch is another option, which will cost around £2,500 and take up to two weeks to construct.

UPVC is one of the most popular porch building materials owing to its robustness against the weather, energy efficiency and ease of maintenance, and will cost around £2,000 for a standard-sized porch.

A brick porch takes slightly longer to build since the panels will not have been prefabricated, but is the most secure option if you would like to improve the security of your front entrance. This will typically cost £1,500-£2,000 to construct.

Designing a porch space depends on the period of your home, and ideally should be created in sympathy with the architecture and appearance of the area to blend in nicely.

Frequently asked questions

Do I need planning permission for a porch extension?

Often, you won’t need permission for a porch – although this depends on the size, style and materials used in your build.

Extension projects falling within the below criteria may be built under permitted development, although you should always contact your local planning authority for guidance before assuming that permitted development applies:

  • The property is not a listed building: for homes that are listed or within a conservation area, you may require express permission for any kind of building work.
  • The floor space is not over 3 metres square.
  • The porch extension is not over 3 metres high.
  • The new porch does not reach within 2 metres of the boundary of the property or within proximity of a public pathway or road.

Typically, a porch of less than 3m2 does not require permission. However, Building Regulations may apply in which case you will need to notify the local authority with at least 48-hours notice of your intent to build.

When does Building Control apply to a porch extension?

Whilst many porches will not require planning permission, they may require Building Control inspections. This is to verify that any electrical points have been safely installed, that the security of the home is not impacted and that insulation requirements have been met.

To be considered exempt from Building Regulations approval:

  • The existing front door must remain in place behind the new porch extension
  • Any disability access must not be impacted

Should you plan to remove your existing front door then Building Regulations will apply. This is to confirm that your build meets requirements of factors such as insulation and fire safety.

What types of porch extension design can I choose from?

As with any extension, there are lots of options when it comes to designing your porch. You can commission a designer or architect to create a bespoke design, or take a look at existing porch extensions for inspiration.

  • Open porches. These are most popular with larger properties and are usually a decked porch area with roofing to protect from the elements. Most open porches are built on raised decking and tend to be wooden, although care should be taken to choose a wood that will not rot and is resistant to pests.
  • Enclosed porches. An enclosed porch is more common in urban areas. Most enclosed porch extensions are either brick or uPVC and are fitted with double or triple glazing to retain energy efficiency.
  • Decorative porches. Some porch extensions are created to add appeal to a property and act as both a useful storage area and a design flourish to differentiate a home from the other houses in the area. Many homeowners use decorative porches as miniature gardens, incorporating climbers or potted plants to make the most of the sunlight.

What costs are involved in a porch extension build?

Whether you contract a builder to construct and finish your porch or choose to complete any element of the build yourself will impact your overall budget.

Cost considerations include:

  • Brickwork: If you are considering the popular porch design of half brickwork, half glazing, the most common brickwork is dwarf brickwork. This tends to be built to around waist height and costs approximately £55 per m2.
  • Painting and decorating: Think about what sort of paintwork or decorating you would like inside your porch. If your extension is fairly open to the elements this should be suitable for exterior use to avoid too much wear and tear. If you have a professional paint your porch, you can expect to pay around £15 per m2.
  • Plastering: If your porch is brickwork, it will usually be plastered to provide a finish for the interior walls. Plastering tends to cost £20 or so per m2.
  • Flooring: Depending on your intended use, robust flooring such as tiling or water-resistant laminate will be most suitable. Wooden or laminate floors cost from £15 per m2, or tiling can cost up to around £30 per m2 depending on the type of tile you choose.

Other cost factors to think about:

  • How much glazing you will have, and whether this is a standard size or bespoke.
  • Whether you would like a flat or sloped roof, and what roofing materials you wish to finish it in.
  • What external appearance your porch will have – such as cladding, rendering or brickwork.
Rich Crossley
Having spent 30 years working all over the world for top-tier investment banks, I’ve owned and developed houses all over the world – Europe, the US and Asia. I’m now based back in the UK and involved in the property industry – oh, and I’m a keen DIY enthusiast!
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