Things To Consider When Buying A Garden Room
5 March 2019
If this is your first time buying a garden home, it can be overwhelming to know what to consider and what to expect. In this article, we’ll go through some pointers to make the process a little easier and hopefully avoid common mistakes that might potentially set you back.
How Is the Garden Room Going to Be Used?
How the garden room is going to be used should be one of the first things to think about. There are a variety of potential ways you can utilise a garden room and once you figure that out, most of the decisions can be answered by going back to its purpose. For example, a party or dining room will more likely be on the larger size to hold guests, as well as have large open windows to take advantage of natural sunlight and surrounding views. On the other hand, a home office can be smaller but will need electrical sockets. If you’re stuck for ideas, we’ve written a handy article on ‘10 Creative Uses For A Garden Room’.
Planning permission can be off-putting for many as it conjures up the image of a bureaucratic nightmare, filled with an overabundance of paperwork and hoop jumping. However, the great news is that most garden homes won’t require planning permission and even if it does, Homestead can take the hassle out it. We can apply on behalf of you and have a 98% planning permission success.
The main rule to remember is that as long as the building is to be placed less than 2.0m from the boundary of the property with a maximum overall height of no more than 2.5m from existing ground level, then it won’t need planning permission. The caveat to this is if you want a garden home on ‘Designated Land’. Designated land is the term used to describe areas of interest such as national parks, the Broads, World Heritage Sites, Areas of Outstanding Natural Beauty and conservation areas. These will have additional limitations such as the garden home needing a larger distance away from the original building/property.
It can get tricky to remember all the rules but obtaining planning permission is not as difficult a process as popular myth would lead you to believe. Our dedicated team at Homestead are always on hand to advise and help if you should have any concerns or wish to check any information with us.
Whilst most standard off the shelf packages come with everything you need for a comfortable garden home, there are some things that will incur additional fees. Usually, electricity and heating are classed as extras, so they are something to consider budgeting for – just in case. However, with Homestead, a lot of our complete packages do include installation, double glazed windows, doors and electrical installation. If you’re uncertain you can always double check with one of our staff.
Bespoke, Off The Shelf or Kits?
There are a few avenues to go down to achieve your dream garden home. Each one has their own costs and benefits, so understanding them all will help you decide which way is most suitable.
Off the Shelf:
Off the shelf refers to garden homes that are precut and ready to go. Whilst there can be minor modifications such as lowering the roof height, they are generally fixed in design. Most of the work comes from installation and can be installed in the garden, or installed at the warehouse and transported into the garden. (Some have it craned in!) They are the middle ground between bespoke and kits which is great for those looking for something relatively quick to install and make their own.
Bespoke garden homes are for those who want to go beyond a pre-set design and look for something specific to their needs. With a bespoke design, you’ll generally work with a builder/architect to plan your garden home. Whilst this will get you a truly one of a kind structure, it is the more expensive out of the three and has the longest lead time.
Kits are pre-cut parts which are then delivered for self-installation. They include all the necessary features such as the framework, double-glazed windows and tiles. Kits are a cheaper option without cutting on quality. As an additional note, although not necessary, it will help immensely if you have prior building experience or are handy with DIY projects.
Time and Cost:
How much does a garden home cost and how long does it take? Well, that really depends on many of the above factors, but if you’re after an 8’ x 8’ off the shelf garden home, you’re looking from around £8,000 – £11,000 and they take on average 2 – 4 weeks to finish installing. Bespoke is a higher price point and generally needs 12 weeks depending on how complex the build is. Kits are usually around £5,000 – £8,000 and it is generally recommended to budget £1,000 for extras such as electricity and heating.
So, those are the things you need to think about when building your dream garden home. Whether it be a home office or a yoga studio, by thinking through some of the decisions, you will be in a better position to achieve what you want with much less fuss. If you are still unsure of all the options available to you or want to get started on your garden home, get in touch with one of our expert team members who with be happy to answer any questions.