For our build, the work started outdoors first, with minimal initial disruption. The plan as it was explained to us was to take down the dividing wall between our property and our neighbors (ours being terraced). Once this had been removed, the builders would be able to then dig the holes to lay the foundations for the extension. All fairly straightforward, right?
Unsurprisingly, taking down the wall took two builders two days. We also came across some unexpected surprises inside the wall including steel rebar at the base and a cable that extended from my neighbors home all the way to his shed. Already some small things were cropping up.
The next issue we found was that the proposed depth for the foundations was not going to be deep enough and this was because of… our neighbors bay tree. Of all things! The roots of this small minor tree had crept into our backyard and both our builder and building control felt that they had the potential to destabilize our foundations. So, another meter deeper we went!
Now the biggest issue of all has been that silly little soil pipe you can see sticking out of the soil in the above photo. This soil pipe has actually been a huge sticking point throughout the design process and the build, as it meant that we couldn’t extend back as far as we wanted. If we had gone further back we would have had to have special permissions from the council and likely had some kind of visible rodding point within our new extension. In fact, at one point it was proposed that we have a manhole cover in our new kitchen. Can you imagine?!
One thing we hadn’t taken into account was the amount of waste that would be generated as a result of the work being done. All that earth was just the first of many, many skips to be hauled away.
And then after all that work (about two weeks worth), it was simply covered with cement and left to dry. We were on our way!