The demand for more housing is great here and the price of houses is high. The house in the photo, two bedrooms, before renovation would sell for $1.2 million. A two-year delay in the zoning process, along with hiring an architect and lawyer to fight for the zoning approval can be expensive and risky.
Commerce has solved the problem. Much new construction is now in the form of raising existing housing. This is what you see in the photo. The house is on a hillside and has been raised one story, which will add about 1,000 sq. ft of new living space, provide a better view on the top two floors plus adding a new two-car garage.
The zoning approval will take only a few months, for a house raising, because the neighbors have no legal nor significant complaints. The house will still be under the height limit of 40 feet from the highest point on the lot and the footprint of the house will not change.
The cost of jacking up the house is only about $15,000. The major costs of this type renovation are in the reinstallation of utilities, a new foundation, building-out the 1,000 sq. ft. of new floor space and adding the garage.