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Home expansion chosen over moving

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More than four in 10 homeowners would look into building extensions on their properties rather than face moving in the current turbulent housing market, a survey has shown.

Halifax Home Insurance found 42% of people would explore the idea of home improvements to avoid having to move.

Among these, 43% said they would consider extending because it was cheaper than moving, while 35% admitted they could not afford to meet the costs associated with buying a new home.

But 38% said they would extend their home because they loved it so much they did not want to move, and 28% said they would do so in the hope of increasing its value.

The research follows an announcement by the Government that it is relaxing the need to obtain planning permission for certain home extensions.

David Rochester, of Halifax Home Insurance, said: "It's no surprise to see this trend of Space Invaders across the country, as extending up, down or sideways can add great value to a property.

"The current economic uncertainty is also a factor, with a large number of families deciding to stay put this year, and instead invest money in extending into previously unused parts of the home."

© The Press Association 2008