Commercial to residential conversions – five things to consider

More and more people are looking to unused commercial properties to help them achieve their dream of building the perfect home. Due to the recent economic downturn, there are more unused commercial properties than usual and the government has also tried to legislate in order to make it easier for such conversions to take place.

However, there are a few things you will need to consider if you’re planning on going ahead with a conversion.


1. Hidden costs

One of the most important financial considerations to make will be just how many hidden costs and fees will be involved in converting a commercial property. You may find that the cost of skilled labourers is higher than anticipated and, because of regulations, they have to be used more often than you thought.

Calculating hidden fees and incorporating them into a budget will give you a better idea of true cost.


2. Surrounding area

Many commercial properties are found away from residential areas. While this may mean they’re closer to shops and transport links, you may find that other amenities are further than is really comfortable.

Make sure you work out whether the facilities you need, such as a school or leisure centre, are close enough and the area isn’t too noisy or isolated for your liking.


3. Meet regulations

There are a variety of regulations that you may have to meet when converting a commercial property into a residential building, so you’ll need to make sure that these won’t get in the way of your ultimate vision. Fenn wrights commercial section specialising in retail premises in Ipswich may be able to provide you with more information in regard to regulations.


4. Access 

Many owners of commercial properties find that converting them into residential buildings presents problems with getting proper access. If you’re thinking of converting, make sure you have a parking space and won’t have to pay large amounts in annual fees or end up parking a great distance away.


5. Lack of information

Finally, you should be aware that there is a certain lack of information concerning commercial to residential conversions that no amount of careful planning can compensate for.

As the process is a bit of a grey area in terms of regulations, you may find things a little easier or more difficult than you expected. Unfortunately, there’s no real way to know until you begin!