It happens all the time: your one-story house was charming and perfect for your family when you bought it, but the years passed and life happened, and now the house has gone from “charming” to just “cramped.” You’d hate to part with the home where you have made so many memories, but you simply need more room. There’s no need to call the realtor–Don’t move, improve!

 

  • Adding a second floor to your house may be the answer to your square-footage problem.

  • Legal Eagle Contractors are award-winning home builders and remodelers serving the Houston area for more than four decades who are ready to undertake your home extension today.

  • Turn your ranch home/rambler or bungalow into a large-family dwelling.

  • Learn how a second level can improve your home’s value, functionality, and livability.

 

Whether you want a full second-story addition or a partial add-on (over just one part of the house, such as the garage), Legal Eagle Contractors is a full-service, experienced partner for Houstonians who are “going up.” We can design and build every aspect of your new floor, from the best location of the stairs to the layout of bedrooms or a new master suite, to a gorgeous new second-story balcony.

As we do with all our projects at Legal Eagle, before we begin construction, we work with you to understand your vision of the end result, your budget parameters, and anything else you want us to know. Regardless of your specific needs, we see to it that everything we add seamlessly merges with the existing structures and stays true to the original architect’s style. This means matching brick, windows, rooflines, and all other features exactly.

You should note that the Texas Gulf Coast is known among builders and gardeners for its troublesome shifting soil (known affectionately as “black gumbo”). You’ll need a structural engineer to tell you how to proceed if you’re dealing with it and what needs to be done to shore up your home’s foundation to support the weight of another level. For more information, check out our blog post “Can Your Foundation Support a Second Story Addition?”.


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Benefits of a Second Story Addition

More square footage is an obvious plus to adding a second story. But if you haven’t considered this option yet, there are a lot more perks to going up you might also have overlooked:

  • Stay in the same house, on the same block, in the same neighborhood you know and love that’s close to all the places you work, play, and go to school.
  • Increase the resale value of your home. Conversely, modifying your current home to fit your needs can be a much better financial decision than trying to sell in a depressed housing market.
  • Take the opportunity to customize your new living area to your liking in a way you couldn’t when you bought an existing home. Add a bathroom, a sewing room, an in-law suite, a second-story deck…it’s up to you!
  • Gain extra space without sacrificing beloved yard features or outdoor recreation areas.
  • Enjoy better views, higher ceilings, more windows, and better lighting.
  • Avoid the snags of buildout construction such as zoning restrictions regarding setbacks.
  • Save money that you would have spent on closing fees and movers. In fact, it’s possible to roll the home renovation costs of a second story into your existing mortgage via refinancing, which could be very beneficial to your bottom line.

What Rooms Can You Add to a Second Story?

With a few exceptions, if it can go on the first floor, it can go on the second floor…

  • Extra bedrooms: One of the most common reasons for adding either a full or partial second story, popular room additions include master suites, in-law suites, and nanny suites.
  • Playroom/game room: The upstairs is often a recommended choice for playrooms because they’re known for being loud and the distance can mitigate some of the noise to the rest of the home. 
  • Nursery: Similarly, an upstairs nursery is advisable for parents who also have older children in the house and are looking to reduce the all-hours noise that infants can produce. 
  • Office/study: Legal Eagle can help you craft a home office that’s fully wired, quiet, and functional.
  • Cinema/theater/media room: An upstairs home theater is a great use for a new floor because since you’re starting from scratch, it’s much easier (and the results will be much better) to insulate the room properly, wire for sound, and install a projector than it is to try to convert a pre-existing bedroom into a media room.
  • Balcony: There’s a reason that balconies have been an architecture staple for hundreds of years: they’re practical and can instantly give your home an upgrade in the looks department.
  • Decking: You might wonder how you ever lived without a second-story deck after a few times of sitting on it, sipping a cup of coffee, and watching the sun rise.
  • Gym: You can safely store over 1,000 pounds in a second-floor gym room because the floor joists distribute the weight, so break out those dumbbells.

 

Where to Next?