There are all sorts of reasons to consider planning a home addition. Maybe you are expecting a baby, or have an elderly parent moving in. Maybe you are just tired of sharing a bathroom with your entire family of five. Regardless of the reason, adding space to your home is a big decision that can pay off under the right circumstances.Don’t be overwhelmed by all of the questions that are running through your mind. Will adding on to my home be a smart investment? How much does it cost to add a bedroom to a house anyway? Will it be too much of a disruption to my life? With a little preparation, you can go into a home addition project feeling cool and confident.Above, a master bath addition with direct access to the pool was a much needed amenity for these homeowners.Explore Your Options Before You Add On To Your HomeIf you and your family need more space, of course, there are several ways to tackle this problem. You could move to a larger home. A new house can be an exciting prospect! But, moving is expensive, not to mention the hassle of uprooting your life and selling your house. It’s a lot to think about! If staying right where you are seems like the best option, then let’s look at what you can do to make it work.Before you jump to the conclusion that you need to add square footage to your home, consider the existing layout that you have. Could you remodel your current space to make it more functional, or finish an attic or basement to gain the additional bedroom, bathroom or living area that you need? If you aren’t sure, consult with a professional designer or contractor who can give you a better idea of how to reorganize your space. A home addition is usually more expensive than a remodel, so a professional can also help you determine what your budget can handle. After careful consideration, if you decide that you can’t get what you need out of the home’s current footprint, adding on might be the best choice.Above, skylights in this finished attic make the space bright and cheery.Time Your New Home Addition RightAnother important factor when considering a home addition is time. First, determine how many more years you plan to spend in your home. There is no guarantee of how much of your investment you will recoup by building an addition, so only add on to your house if you plan to stay there for at least five years. This will increase the likelihood that you get back what you spend. Once you have decided that you are staying in your house long enough to justify the cost of an addition, consider the actual timing of construction. Depending on the type and location of your addition, you will probably need to temporarily rearrange your living space. You might even have to do without access to your kitchen or bath for a while. Be sure to plan carefully around school and work schedules, major life events and seasonal weather.Consider Your Neighborhood In Home Addition Design PlansStill not sure if the addition you have in mind will be right for your house? Look at the other homes in your area. Will adding on keep your house in character with the rest of the neighborhood? Overbuilding relative to the homes around you can make a house difficult to sell. For example, in a community of quaint ranches, turning your home into a multi-level mansion probably won’t yield a good return on investment. Find out which amenities are in high demand in your region. Is there something missing from your home that other houses in the area generally have, like a master suite or a guest bath? Adding a space to your house that is desirable to home buyers near you is a smart choice. It is also a good idea to find out about any building restrictions and zoning laws in your town or city that might affect your plans. If you have an HOA, they probably have regulations regarding home additions as well, so check with yours before you make any decisions. There are many factors to consider before you take steps to build an addition to a house. If the situation is right, adding square footage to your home could be the answer to your problems.