I have summarised 10 essential things you need to consider when buying a garden room or home office from a UK manufacturer or supplier. Below are the vital things to consider prior to making a purchase, as obviously whenever buying a new garden office, room, building etc you want to ensure you are getting value for money and making the right purchase, for the right reasons. These tips are universal, as they apply whether you are buying a contemporary modern garden-room or an eco-friendly garden office, whatever the garden building or living space.
Here are a list of 10 keys things you need to consider:
1. Decide what function your new garden living space will be used for – and ensure that the design can meet these requirements. If it is going to be a garden office then you may require a garden room manufacturer that offers more electrics and good natural lighting options. Although I would advise not too much light if using computer screens or displays, as these can be a little sensitive to too much natural light.
If it is a gym or hot tub enclosure you want, then you will naturally require good ventilation. As a home cinema you may require excellent acoustics and sound proofing. As a granny annex or guest bedroom you would require excellent insulation, you may even wish to feature an en-suite shower or bathroom. Fortunately many garden building manufacturers offer these options. Also bear in mind whether you will need certain internal features such as cable TV, taps, toilet facilities, maybe even a bedroom. With regards to flooring consider whether you require laminate flooring, solid oak or perhaps even a carpeted finish… As you can see there is plenty to think about. Before making that purchase be 100% sure the design can match your requirements.
2. Plan the position for your new garden room carefully – if the garden room is more than 5 metres from your home and 1 metre from any boundary and does not take up more than 50% of your garden, then no planning permission is required for 95% of builds. This is provided your original home has not had any previous additional building extensions. Also bear in mind there are some restrictions in certain conservation areas and the like.
3. Planning permission may not be required for your garden building if…
1) Your Garden building will reside a maximum of 5 metres from your property.
2) Your garden building is either more than 20m from a public right of way or is nearer to the right of way than your house is.
3) If you do not live in a conservation area, an area of outstanding natural beauty or in a listed building.
4) Your garden building is for your private use only.
5) The building stands less than 4 metres high
6) Less than 50% of your total garden space is occupied by your garden building.
4. Do you want more than one floor? – As partly indicated by point 5) of the planning permission guidelines, if your building stands more than 4m high you will require planning permission, this is also the case if your building is made up of two floors or more. Luckily garden-building suppliers can work to many different specifications, so as long as you make them aware of your desire to have two or more floors, you should be good to go.
5. What size of garden room do you require – you can build a garden room of any size and provided it does not take up more than 50% of your garden area, you will not need planning permission but you will need building regulation approval if the rooms is over 30m2. However, it may be prudent to check with your local authority and the developer of any new build housing development, just to ensure there are no other quirky restrictions in your local area.
Garden rooms can even be attached to your home like a conventional extension. This would require building regulations approval but no planning permission provided your home has not had any previous building extension and that the extension size planned is within your permitted development rights. A professionally constructed garden room can even add considerable value to your home and garden rooms like The Qube come with a full 5 year or optional upgrade 10 year guarantee.
6. Do you require an open plan room or a multi room garden room – with designs now available for fully self-contained living spaces, there really are no limitations, any room combination you can think of, and you can do it. Whether they are open plan or multi room, it’s really only down to personal preference and the limitations of the garden room manufacturer you are dealing with. Open plan room games rooms for instance are proving very popular getaways, as are surround sound cinema rooms, bar areas for the dads, musical studios, it really could be the ultimate entertainment space.
7. Think about the type of design and style of your new garden living space – are you looking for a modern contemporary look or do you require the building to compliment and harmonise with the existing style of your home. This is important as you may not want the garden room, office or whatever potential use you have for it to clash with the style of your home. Fortunately there are numerous options available to you. So if you want a modern contemporary look choose a supplier that can cater for your needs, and if you want the garden building to blend in with your home, make the supplier aware of this, so you can be sure they can deliver what you request.
8. What materials will it have to be constructed with? – Are you after a timber building, wooden cladding or would you prefer a more modern, contemporary metallic material, all down to personal taste and available budget. Wooden cladding such as Western Red Cedar is naturally resistant to moisture, decay and insect damage. Whereas Cape Cod Cladding is a low maintenance wood cladding with a 15-year factory finish warranty, available in numerous colours.
9. Does it have to be eco-friendly? – If you are the sort of person that wishes their garden building to not only be functional but also eco-friendly, many garden room manufacturers are offering eco-friendly product ranges to cater for your needs. As they recognise the need to be aware of the environment at this current time, and are basing there build structures and materials on eco-friendly principles and values.
Many garden room manufacturers are now opting to use a structural insulated panel (SIP) that fuses a foam core between 2 outer skins of oriented strand board (OSB) to create a super-strong construction panel. The SIPs are used to construct the walls, floor and roof. SIPs offer several benefits to the environment, as they effectively replace conventional stud wall construction, fewer mature forest products need to be harvested. The outer OSB skins are made from “engineered wood” that is manufactured from renewable, fast growing trees. The result of this is superior insulation qualities; meaning heating and electricity bills are reduced meaning fewer fossil fuels need to be burned.
10. So where can you get a garden room like this? – There are many companies and manufacturers specialising in these types of garden rooms. Most of them focus on a niche though such as sheds, summerhouses, gazebos, modern contemporary garden offices or garden rooms. Whereas suppliers such as The Qube offer garden rooms and buildings that are versatile enough to turn into whatever you desire, not only contemporary and modern, but also eco-friendly at the same time, and should you wish can be made to blend in with your home and taken with you when you move home if you require.