Things to consider when building a 2-storey home. Pros & cons of single and double storey homes

Are you currently wondering what are the main things to consider when building a house? The first thing to consider is how many storeys do you need to comfortably accommodate your family and lifestyle. This can be a really tough decision for many young families and retirees designing a home and trying to strike the perfect balance between function and comfort, long-term vs short-term value, and dream home vs right-now home.

This blog is here to first help you figure out whether a 2 storey house is better than a single storey for you and your family, then what you need to consider when designing a two-storey residential building.


What are the pros and cons of a single vs double storey house?

To help you figure out whether double-storey is better than a single storey for your new home build or retrofit, we have compiled the pros and cons of building a 2 storey house vs a single storey house below. 


Pros of building a Two-storey house vs a single storey house

1. Flexibility in design

When you opt to build up instead of out you gain a lot more flexibility when it comes to the design of your home. Even if are building on a small block, a 2 storey house will offer you and your growing family ample living and outdoor space. Another benefit for young families, in particular, is that it’s a lot harder to outgrow a double story house as most have generously sized backyards that make home extensions easier. In a single-story home that has already maximised the block space young families are quicker to sell and move on to a bigger home. 

2. Higher resale value

With an increase in curbside appeal and design options, such as grand balconies and feature staircases, selling your home in the future could be a lot easier than selling a single storey. 

3. Optimise stunning views 

Whether your goal is to sell in the future or build your dream forever home, taking advantage of stunning coastal, hillside or forest views is a desirable luxury you don’t often get from single storey homes. Is watching the sunset every night from your upstairs living room your retirement dream? Or do you want to ensure your home will appeal to future buyers when you are ready to sell?


Cons of building a Two-storey house

1. Increased time and cost to build 

Generally, a double story house will take longer and cost more to build than a single-story house because it involves more complex designs and construction. 

2. Less accessibility

Double storey homes can be a problem for people with mobility issues. Although, if you are elderly or have an injury or disability, you don’t have to throw away your dream of watching the sunset from the upstairs living room just yet. There are amazing options available now that provide safety and accessibility for people with mobility issues, which we will talk about later. 

3. Increased electricity bills

With two storeys to keep cool in summer and warm in winter, electricity bills can become more expensive for the homeowner compared to living in a one storey home. 


Is a double storey house an advantage or disadvantage? 

As you can see there are pros and cons to both a double storey and single storey, but hopefully, you now have a clearer idea of which storey is more suited to you. If not, keep reading to learn what factors can help you decide which is right for you between a double-storey and a single storey.


What factors can help you decide which is right for you? 

Is it worth putting on a second storey? For some people yes it will be, and for others, it won’t be worth it. Here are three factors to consider that may help you avoid making important design decisions you may later regret. 



What does your budget look like for your new home build or retrofit? You may have a modest budget as this will be your family’s first home, or perhaps you have a grand budget as this will be your dream forever home. In that case, bring on the luxury features!

When it comes to figuring out whether you can afford a single or double-storey house in your current budget consider the following questions: Can I afford an extra 10% minimum to build a second storey? What am I willing to sacrifice to afford to build an extra storey? Can I afford higher electricity bills to run heating and cooling in a double storey home? 



Is a double-storey house an advantage? This depends on your lifestyle needs. Are you heading into retirement and dreaming of downsizing to your luxury forever home? Or do you want to still be able to comfortably accommodate your children and grandchildren when they come to visit? In that case, a two-story home with extra spare bedrooms and ample living and entertaining space might be an important priority for you. 

Another factor to consider is accessibility. Do you need to build a home that allows safe accessibility for very young children running around, a disabled family member who visits often or factors in your own mobility limitations as you age? Two storey homes with residential lifts can be just as comfortable as a single storey for people with mobility issues. Just imagine not having to carry groceries up the stairs to your second storey kitchen because your lift takes you there in a few seconds.


Land suitability 

Are you stuck with a block of land that is extremely small, limiting your choice of home design? Or do you have an enviable 1,000 square foot that could house a grand single storey with an even grander backyard? With a double-storey home you don’t need a big block to have a big backyard. Building up rather than out will give you that spacious garden and pool you dream of, without sacrificing the large kitchen you also have to have. Considering your land suitability will help you finally find the answer to this question: Is double-storey better than a single storey?


What do you need to consider when designing a two-storey residential building?


Be realistic with cost expectations

Building a new home can be a costly journey if you are not prepared for it. One way to avoid financial stress is to factor in extra “just in case” savings to cover unforeseen price increases. This has been a common issue for home builders and homeowners in 2022 with the huge timber increase. 


Be realistic with building expectations

Not only can building a new home be a costly journey, but it can also be a long one. Especially when you build a double-storey house. To avoid stress while waiting for your handover day, ensure your living arrangements are comfortable. Perhaps it’s not a good idea to live with your in-laws and two young kids for a year? 


Design for the future not just the now

Why are building a double-storey home now? Is it because your family is growing? Is it because you want to take advantage of your calming coastal views? Do you have lots of families stay with you throughout the year? Whatever your reasons are for the present, are you also considering the next 20 years in your double-storey home design? Such as a low cost two storey house design that will allow you to run your 2 story house efficiently and affordably. 

What can help you enhance your two-story house?


Residential lifts can enhance a two-story house in more ways than one. 

  • Restore independence, convenience and freedom for people with a disability or mobility limitation.  
  • Improve the comfort and safety in a double-storey home you can never outgrow. 
  • Increase the value of your home with enviable luxury 

Curious to learn more surprising benefits of choosing to incorporate a residential lift in your 2 story house? We recommend reading this article next: 6 reasons why installing a home elevator is a good idea.

Platinum Elevators offer stunning designs to suit any budget and style, beginning with Classic Lift, Sovereign Lift, Royal Lift, Jewel Lift and ending with the penthouse of residential lifts, Round Panoramic Lift.  

Whether you are building your family home or your retirement home, a residential lift in your double-storey home can enhance your home design and prevent you from outgrowing it quicker than expected. Contact Platinum Elevators today.



Skip to content