Are you struggling to find space in your home? Whether you live in a studio, a tiny apartment or just want to get the most out of a small room, here are some space design ideas that can help you make the most of every sq inch.
Using Multipurpose Furniture
One of the ways to save space is to have furniture pieces which serve multiple purposes. One idea is having a sofa that can be made into a bed for your visiting guests or one that can also be transformed into a dining area for you and your friends. With space being an issue in city living, these inventive solutions can really add more
functionality to your home.
Make it Vertical
If your small space is lucky enough to have high ceilings, think of making your storage vertical. Such as floor to ceiling shelving or hanging up your items. It makes your home look neater as well as more organized. As a bonus, it is very pleasing to the eyes where you can show off all the books you’ve been reading, or your unhealthy collection of shoes!
Trick your Eyes
If you really don’t have the space, why not add a magic touch and trick your eyes into thinking you actually do. By putting up large mirrors, you can create the illusion of doubling the space. Tearing down walls, making your windows larger and swapping the solid doors into glass ones, can really trick your eyes by utilising more natural light and opening up the space you have.
Nooks and Crannies are your Friends
Ensure that you use every inch of storage space. For example, inside the cabinet doors, you can pin up the items such as your cleaning supplies or you can utilize the small space in between your stove and your kitchen counter by adding a small shelf for your spices. Another way is to hide your plug sockets inside your furniture so you can put it away when you are not using it.
Architectural designers can help take you through the right process to create your dream loft conversion. It takes times but it will be worth it in the end. Here we outline the schedule of the loft conversion process from beginning to end.
Is my loft suitable for conversion?
Can your home can take the weight of a conversion? Is there enough head height? Is there enough space and do you need planning permission? These are a few factors that needs to be addressed before starting a loft conversion.
The easiest way to check is to see if there are other similar loft conversions on your street. As most houses on the same street have similar structures, it is highly unlikely that you wouldn’t be able to do the same conversion as well.
Since a loft conversion would add more weight to your house, it’s important to ensure the structure of your home can take the extra weight. Checking this early is a good idea. If it turns out that your house cannot support it, then underpinning may be needed to support the extra weight, which could increase your costs.
Another factor to check is whether there is enough head height and your roof structure. If your roof is a traditional cut rafter or a purlin roof (built before 1965), the minimum height for a roof is between 2.2 m and 2.4 m. If your roof is a modern trussed roof (built after 1965), the minimum height is between 2.4 m to 2.6 m.
Finally, it’s important to think about if the space can be turned into suitable and usable room(s). If it is too small, then it might be better to look into other home renovation ideas. Take into consideration that you would need to accommodate a staircase that would lead up to the loft, as well as space to put water tanks, plumbing, heating and the hot water system if adding a bathroom.
Site visit and measured survey
The great thing with loft conversions is that it opens up more space in your home to with as you want! Once you know you are suitable for a loft conversion. the fun part begins. A good place to start is by brainstorming ideas on how it should benefit your everyday living. An architectural designer will help discuss the technical aspects of your build as well as help discuss some exciting new ideas for your loft conversion. Once this is done, the measured survey will begin. This is where the architectural designers will measure your home, and create existing as well as proposed plans for your loft conversion.
The architectural designer would then make drawings within the 2 weeks of initial measured survey, and will work together with you to review and discuss your designs. Once the drawings are to your expectations, they will submit to planning. With most loft conversions, as long as it does not exceed the top of your existing roof, it will be put through to lawful/permitted development – click here to learn more about loft conversion planning applications.
Party Wall and Building Regulations
In simple terms, a party wall divides the buildings of two owners. The boundary between ownerships are usually, but not always, positioned at the centre of the wall.
If the proposed walls share the boundary of a wall in the proximity on your neighbour’s property (semi-detached or terraced), a party wall agreement would be needed.
Your neighbours will have to experience some of the pain of the work without enjoying the benefits of the new loft. Therefore, it is crucial to keep them informed. Legally, you have to give your neighbours some notice before starting any loft conversions that is close to their property.
This would then move on to the process of selecting and appointing the main contractor for the build. At this stage, you have already had the required drawings and specifications to start with the build. A tender is a submission made by a supplier in response to an invitation to tender and it makes an offer for the supply of goods and services. You are the one who will be required to determine how you will procure the project by selecting your final contractor and getting a fixed price for all the constructions. However, some do not need to go through this process as they already have a builder in mind, maybe through personal contacts or good relations. Or maybe prefer to go with the preferred builder of the architectural designer. This allows for a better finish as they are already accustomed to the design style of the designer.
Once everything has been finalised, your project can finally start taking shape! The build site is managed and insured by the contractors and the architectural designers can have scheduled inspection visits to ensure that all details are built to the drawings. Towards the end of construction, the architectural designers would conduct the final quality control inspection. Checking for any unresolved issues before any certificates are issued.
For those with very little time on their hands, Gogo Studio can get your loft conversion on schedule. Creating a seamless journey from beginning to end.
Permitted development rights are a type of a general planning permission that is granted by the parliament. You can perform certain types of work without needing to apply for a planning permission (read more here). A permitted development only applies to houses and outhouses but not flats or maisonettes.
If you want to know if you have a permitted development right then you have come to the right place! These points can act as a checklist as to whether you are within a permitted development right or not.
You would be within permitted development right if you are planning a single storey extension. However, there is a limit to how far you can extend. If your home is a detached house, you can extend up to 8m in depth.
On the other hand, if you live in a semidetached or terrace house, then the permitted development will be reduced to 6m.
Another type of home extension that you can do is a two storey extension. A two storey extension can project up to 3m from the original rear wall if it is within permitted development. Also, if you were thinking of getting a side extension, it cannot be more than half of your house’s width.
Lastly, you can only do a home extension within the permitted development only once.
If you work with Gogo Studio, we would be able to help you figure out whether you are within the permitted development right or help you make a few small changes that shift your plans in order to be within permitted development rights.
Recently bought a new home but it’s not designed the way you wanted? Or tired of your current home’s appearance and want to make some changes? Well, doing a home renovation might be the solution! Here are a few tips and tricks on how to do a home renovation:
1) Create a checklist of what you would like to achieve
Especially when you have recently bought a new home, it is good to create a checklist on what needs to be updated and whatever faults there are in the home. You can check on the small cracks or the squeaky doors. But you can also write what your family really needs – more/dining kitchen space to host a grander Christmas Dinner? An extra bedroom in the loft so extended family can visit? Write these ideas down! It makes a great starting point to where you want your project to go.
As long as it is listed down, it can help keep you grounded on what the renovation is all about. The process can be quite complicated and confusing, but with a list it would be hard to get lost. The list can be sorted into different rooms in the house or categorized into the type of job such as electrics, painting and decorating so it all can be done at once.
2) Get permission from the neighbours
Communication is key! Before starting on any major work, you are required to inform your neighbours about your home renovation. Especially if you live in a semi-detached house or a terraced house and share the same wall, it would be hard for your neighbours to carry on with their daily lives without any disruptions. A party wall agreement can be raised in order to avoid any disputes during the construction of the build, this is something Gogo Studio can provide as part of the package deal.
3) Budget, budget, budget
Making structural changes to your home costs money and it can be very easy to lose control. Especially when you get excited about all the cool new features you want to include. What you can do is plan out what you want to do to your home and check how much each element would cost you through online shopping websites and calculators.
It’s a good idea to add about 10% of the whole cost to your budget. Just in case there are other hidden costs or like the look of that fancy oven you’ve had your eye on. It would be best if you state your ideas to an architectural designer so they can estimate a cost for you but for a more accurate construction cost, it is best to go through the design phase first.
4) Find a REALLY good architectural designer
Home renovations can be daunting, so why not enlist some expert help? They would help you throughout your whole home renovation process from initial site visits to constructions and even your budget. They know the planning system well and can input new ideas to your home renovation. Your architectural designer will help take the ideas you have noted down, and make them possible or even better.
If you want to read more on the role of an architectural designer, click here
5) Think about what you can and cannot do yourself
Sometimes it is nice to add that homemade flair to your home and so it’s a good idea to add some DIY elements into your build. Not only does this help give that personal feel to your renovation, but could help your wallet as well. If you are going with an architectural designer, don’t be afraid to send them lots of ideas of what you want to achieve, so they can help integrate it in your build.
6) What is the re-sale value?
If this property isn’t going to be your forever home, it would be a good idea to see if your renovations will help increase the resale value. For example, on average any type of extension will add 20% to the value of the house. However, this is much higher in London, where residents believe the average extension will add 35% to the value of their house.
These are only a few of the many tips and tricks when you are thinking of doing a home renovation. if you have any questions on home renovations, feel free to comment below or contact us directly.
In the mid to late 1930s, a housing boom was in full swing. This explosion led to huge changes in the way houses were being designed, built and mainly located in the suburbs. Today, these houses are still standing and pose a great opportunity to modernise the space.
We have compiled our best home extension ideas for a 1930s property. These should help not only increase the size of your home but its value. It is a good idea to ask your architect to research prior approved projects to see what can be achieved in your area.
Contemporary Rear Extension
This type of extension makes use of the limited space in a 1930s property by extending into the garden. The rear extension provides an excellent open plan space that can be modernised with glass doors to let in natural light, updated furnishings and appliances. With this extra space, there is a lot of flexibility for a larger kitchen dining room and even lounge area depending on the size available. This brightened area helps reduce the claustrophobic nature of some older 1930s properties and bring it into the 21st century.
Some 1930s properties are semi-detached, and so it is possible to create additional width space by taking advantage of the side alleyway. A side extension does this nicely. When single storey, the side extension can help generate more natural light and when coupled with a rear extension, a very large space to take advantage of.
Similar to the rear extension, it provides a nice open plan space, or could be used for a utility space to clear excess clutter lying about or bulky washing machines and cleaning appliances. A two storey side extension would mean less natural light but could open up the first floor for a study, larger/extra bathroom and an additional bedroom.
A loft conversion, whichever the type, can help modernise the extra space that may be under utilised as of now. This space can be made into an extra bedroom with ensuite, study area, kids play area, a place to relax, anything you want! With a wide range of options you can take advantage of the height to let in the sun anytime of day and have a nice view to look out on. There are additional aspects to think about such as plumbing if an ensuite is required, head height and pitch angle. It’s important to take these into consideration when creating a habitable space.
There are different types of ground floor extensions some of which are a side extension, a rear extension or a wraparound and each type has their own distinct features.
If you want to save time, these house extension ideas do not require planning permissions as long as the new structure is under 3 meters length or 4 meters for a semi-detached house, single storey and not exceeding 50% of the land surrounding the original house.
This type of ground floor house extension makes use of the extra strip of land at the side (like an alleyway) of the house and transforms it into extra valuable space for your home. This is especially useful for Victorian and Edwardian homes.
The extra space can be converted into a larger kitchen or living area as the original exterior wall has been removed. Hence, the whole extension stretches across the full width of the house.
Depending on the type of side extension you go for, it allows opportunity to brighten up the space with more natural light. It also allows for more experimentation in terms of the aesthetics. For instance you could match the extension with the existing brickwork, or allow for a more modern feel with glass panels and grey beams.
A rear extension would extend out from the back of your home and open out to the garden. This would create more space to your home when your family is growing but don’t want to go through the hassle of moving houses – especially if you are living in London.
This rear extension can be utilised to make a great open plan kitchen/dining area, have space for a utility room or an extra living room to entertain guests. The possibilities are endless with this extra space. Some extensions will open into the garden, bringing the outside in for a fresh air dining experience. Others simply create a more flexible space for the whole family to enjoy.
A wraparound house extension is a combination of both the side and rear extension hence would create an L-shaped space which wraps around your whole house. This type of home extension is perfect if your house has a back garden as well as an empty alleyway at the side of your home. This type of extension allows for an even greater space for a kitchen/dining area or living room space. It also allows for more natural light to come into your home.
Since this type of extension is one of the largest, it is important to think about the dynamic and flow throughout the rooms. This is type of extension can be seen as disruptive to the original building so there are many factors to think about when adding this space.
if you are planning to do a two storey home extension then the process is very similar to the ground floor extension. Want to find out about the prices of doing a home extension? you can click here or alternatively, you can contact us directly.
When you want more space in your home, undertaking a loft conversion is less hassle and generally cheaper than moving houses. When moving houses, stamp duty land tax comes into play. The current threshold is £125,000 for residential properties and £150,000 for non-residential land and properties. In order to avoid this, many people have moved to increasing the space they already have – through home extensions and loft conversions.
There are four main types of loft conversion which are dormer loft conversions, hip to gable loft conversions, mansard loft conversions and roof light loft conversions. Each type has their own distinct features.
Dormer Loft Conversion
This type of loft conversion is the most popular option when it comes to loft conversions as it is simply an extension to your existing roof. Just like what the image has shown, it projects vertically from a sloping roof and it would create additional floor space and headroom for your house.
This dormer loft conversion requires no dramatic changes to your roof and you are also allowed to install windows to your new loft to add more natural light into your home.
Rooflight Loft Conversion
If you are aiming to be cost effective as well as having the least amount of structural work, then a roof light loft conversion would be suitable for you! The only changes made are the addition of windows like what is shown in the image.
Rooflights are known to channel more light into a room than standard windows. Especially rooflights with a frameless design. This is because of their sky facing orientation, which means they capture more sunlight throughout the day as the sun moves across the sky.
Hip to Gable Loft Conversion
If you live in a semi-detached or end-terrace house, the best type of loft conversion for you is the hip to gable loft extension. As you can see in the ‘before’ image, the side roof is still a slope but once it is removed, the end wall would be built up straight to form a new vertical gable as shown in the ‘after’ image.
Mansard Loft Conversion
In order to create extra volume for your home, a mansard loft conversion would be right for you. This type of loft conversion would replace either one or both roof slopes. Mansard loft conversions are also the most aesthetically pleasing to look at compared to the other types of loft conversions
This type of conversion has a flat roof, with the back wall sloping inwards at an angle of 72 degrees. Windows are usually housed within small dormers. However, Mansard loft conversions normally require planning permissions, due to the large changes to the roof shape and structure.
For more information on what type of loft conversion is most suitable for you and your home, please feel free to contact us and we can start discussing your project.
When creating a loft conversion, you do not necessarily need planning permission and would normally undertake permitted development instead. However, permission is required where you extend or alter the roof space and it exceeds specified limits and conditions. A good idea is to is check your local council website and learn more about which regulations are in place.
Most times, the developments that require planning permission are developments where the extensions go beyond the highest part of the roof or beyond the plane of the roof.
What about Building Regulations?
Unlike planning permission, all loft conversions require building regulations approval. This is to ensure the safety measures are in place.
If you want to know what building regulations are, it is a detailed regulation (structure, hygiene, safety etc.) where your project would need to follow to ensure a smooth and safe process for you.
At Gogo Studio, we work with structural engineers for the technical calculations and we would draw up the building regulations within 4 weeks for submission as it is important that your home design complies to all the necessary regulations. We will also deliver your drawings within 2 weeks and, if necessary, will proceed to apply for planning permission to get your loft conversion completed as soon as possible.
The cost of a home extension can range from around £1,000 to £2,000 /m² for a straightforward single storey extension. The quality that you want may want would affect the cost of your extension.
- Basic quality: £1,000 – £1,700 /m²
- Good quality: £1,700 – £2,000 /m²
- Excellent quality: £2,000 – £2,200 /m²
Hence, an average 5m x 5m home extension would cost around £30,000 and up to £50,000 if you are living in London.
Variables such as whether the extension is a single or two storey, how much floor space your extension would have, what the extension would be used for and the amount of window glazing that you are planning to use would affect the cost of your home extension.
A generally accepted rule is to add an extra 50% to the cost of a single storey extension. So, if you are doing a two storey 5m x 5m home extension, it would cost around £60,000 or more if you live in London.
You have to remember that if you are planning to do a home extension, you would be required to build a roof and foundations as well.
Click here to learn about how much loft conversions cost
Different types of loft conversions have varying prices. A Dormer loft conversion would cost from approximately £33,000. A Rooflight loft conversion would cost from approximately £25,000 and the most expensive one is the Mansard or Hip to Gable loft conversion which costs from approximately £40,000.
When you are thinking of doing a loft conversion, the biggest worry for you might be the cost . The figures stated above are a rough estimate on a small bedroom loft conversion.
The price may change depending on where you are in the country, the size and complexity, nature of your roof and the interior design of the loft conversion. You might also need to make alterations on the lower floors of your house such as stairwells and for fire safety. Another consideration is whether you need to install plumbing if you are creating a bathroom in your loft conversion.
As all projects are unique, it is very important to consider all the costs in building and also any new ideas for the interior. It’s a good idea to work with an architectural designer to gain a more accurate cost of your loft conversion and to identify the best type of loft for you and your space. The local authority in your area may have specific guidelines and so researching the area and past conversions can give a good indication on the type of loft conversion that is available to you.
Click here to find out how much it costs for a home extension