Sounds easy enough to create an open plan living space, but there are a few points you need to consider before you start knocking walls down and building new areas, there’s more to it than that.
Knocking through or extending?
If you want an open plan room there maybe room within your home to create this space, can you make use of the space you already have?
For example you may have a kitchen or lounge that is attached to a dining room that is seldom used and this could present you with the opportunity of combining these two rooms. Alternatively you may be able to knock through to an internal garage. Combining existing rooms by remodeling can create the space you want, without having to extend.
Extending maybe the other option if the layout of your property doesn’t allow or you don’t want to change the existing floor plans. There are many types of extensions including orangeries, conservatories or brick built extensions working with an architect will help you decide which type will best suit your property and budget.
TOP TIP: An extension will take away some of the natural daylight in the original rooms, so make sure it is packed with glazing.
Whether you extend or convert, work with a surveyor who will be able to create the floor plans for you this will cost around £600 – £900 plus VAT depending on the surveyor where you live and the extent of the work.
Create zones for activities if you are combining 3 rooms like the lounge, kitchen and dining room it’s still important that each space has its own identity. Within these zones you will need to plan for lighting, ceiling height, floor coverings and different colour schemes. Each area should flow into the next and have enough space for its purpose.
Think things through from the top to the bottom i.e. split level floorings, steps, where the services will go and roofing options such as lantern roofs and skylights.
Make sure you employee a good team to do the work. To fully appreciate the end project and for it to have added value to your property, you will need to be working with professionals – no cowboy builders need apply!
It goes without saying you need to budget for the extension/conversion as well as the hidden surprises. Most projects hit a few bumps along the way so having a backup fund is always advisable. Extensions/conversions don’t come cheap and you need to be able to fund the build without cutting corners in the aim to save money.
Finally analyse your existing space and potentially the new space an extension will bring. Think about how you can use it to best suit your family and lifestyle. After all you are not creating a show home it’s somewhere you need to live and enjoy using.
If you need more help or advice, please contact us to discuss your home conversion plans.