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Differences Between Renovation, Extension, Addition And New Build

Talking to a builder about customizing your home can be daunting if you are unsure of the terms used in the industry and what their differences are. Knowing whether you want a renovation or an extension, an addition or rebuild, will improve your confidence when talking to your builder and make explaining your needs easier. Here, at  Best House Extension Builder in Leicester we want you to have the confidence to ask for what you are looking for and so, we want to clarify these terms for you.


One of the more popularized terms in the building and construction industry is ‘renovation’. Used in relation to an existing building it means to update, return to original condition, or to repair.

Perhaps your home was built in the 1960s and it still reflects that era, but you want to modernize it:

  • You may want to upgrade the windows and their frames
  • Remove wood panelling from the walls
  • Turn an old, tired kitchen into a modern treasure
  • Or, change the bathroom into one that accommodates a modern family better

Renovation also refers to restoration. Instead of modernizing your 60s home you may prefer to return your heritage home back it to its original condition by:

  • Removing modern aluminium windows and door frames
  • Replace plain architraves and cornices and restore the elaborate, sculpted ones of the area
  • Or, take out the modern shower and go back to the beauty of a claw-foot bathtub

Repairing a run-down home is also classed as renovating. Replacing floorboards, ceilings, walls, cupboards, whatever needs fixing.

All of the above actions come under the banner of renovations.


In the building industry the term ‘extension’ means to extend an existing property; to extend its overall floor size. Basically, it means to add another room or make a room larger whilst remaining at ground level. To add an extension to your home you will need to sacrifice some of your yard to accommodate the extra room.


Similar to an extension an addition will give your home more living space. However, you will not have to give up any of your yard as an ‘addition’ goes up and not out, like an extension does. In other words, when you have an addition done to your home you will gain another floor level. Adding height rather than length.

New Build

In contrast to the other terms explained here, ‘new builds’ do not refer to an existing building. They can include the construction of a new home, building a rumpus room, or a granny-flat in your backyard. As long as the new project is not attached to an existing property it is classed as a ‘new build’.

Understanding the construction industry’s terms and phrases isn’t compulsory, we will talk with you about what your expectations and needs are. So, there is no need to be anxious, even if you don’t understand the terms.

However, you should never feel intimidated to ask questions or to clarify your knowledge of the terms used most often within the construction and building industry. Afterall, you are the one who has to live with your choices.

When you are ready give the team a call to discuss your next renovation, addition, extension, or new build.



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