a cold rolled steel buildings built by Hamilton Steel
a cold rolled steel buildings built by Hamilton Steel

Commercial building extensions: here’s what you need to know

17th April 2023 · Commercial Buildings

Commercial building extensions: here’s what you need to know

Is your business expanding? Does it feel like you are outgrowing your current company headquarters?

Commercial properties are usually the largest investment that a business owner will make, so it’s important that you put your money into a building that has enough room to facilitate your services and meet the needs of your organisation.

Extending or enlarging an existing structure can often be a cost-effective alternative to undertaking a new build. Before you put yourself through the hassle of looking for a potential new site, it’s worth investigating whether you could extend your existing property.

Structural steel is ideally suited to commercial property extensions, as new steel frames can simply be both bolted to existing steel structures or added to concrete buildings. 

There are many benefits of installing a steel-framed extension. Steel structures are easy to alter, extend, upgrade and remove to suit changing requirements. With relatively short lead times, steel-framed buildings combine rapid availability with strength and durability.

Steel-framed buildings are also highly resistant to fire, immune to the degrading effects of burrowing insects and have good moisture-resistant properties. 

If you’re considering a steel extension for your commercial property, there are some key factors to consider:

a steel strucutre that has been built by Hamilton Steel Buildings for a commercial building extension

1/ Be aware of what land you own

It may sound obvious, but before you put the plans in place for your extension, it’s important that you know exactly how much of the land you own and on what basis.

If your property is freehold, the more flexibility you will have when it comes to extensions. However, if it’s a leasehold, you are going to need consent from your landlord. 

Many commercial properties have a complete ban on extensions and any altercations, so you must be sure to get consent for your project right away.

2/ Get legal advice from a professional

There are plenty of legal complications when it comes to commercial building extensions. Land is generally affected by a range of legal issues which could impact your planned extension. 

There are a number of restrictive covenants that prohibit what can be done to a commercial building. These include:

  • Some properties have restraints on further building on the site or the building may have a size limit due to its surroundings
  • An extension could be disallowed if building it could block or limit light to the windows of neighbouring buildings
  • If you were wanting to extend your building vertically, there are laws and limits around air space. You are only granted enough air space depending on the size and needs of the current property.

With all the laws surrounding commercial properties and extensions, many companies look for help and invest in the services of an established construction solicitor. 

A solicitor will be able to help and guide you through all the complex parts to ensure your project runs as smoothly as possible.

A steel building structure for commercial building extensions

3/ Hire a project manager to do the work for you…

Planning permission is a particularly complex area of property law, especially when it comes to commercial building extensions.

Extensions don’t always require planning permission, for example, if your extension is minor or an additional building within the boundaries of the original property, then this should not be an issue.

The rules surrounding the process for extensions can be confusing, so again, it’s best to talk to a professional before taking the next steps. 

Luckily for you, one of our key services at Hamilton Steel is assisting our clients with planning regulations to ensure that their steel extension project runs smoothly.

We offer our clients complete project management from start to finish, and as part of that, we can assist with any planning applications. 

We have vast experience managing the planning process and applications for clients across the UK. We can liaise with local authorities on behalf of our clients.

Commercial building extensions: a fully built extension

We have completed a number of successful commercial building extensions, including this project for Sustain Landscapes LTD.

For complete project management and professional installation of steel-framed extensions, get in touch today.

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