Anyone live in a barn conversion?

(16 Posts)
pigleychez Mon 16-Sep-13 12:03:29

Seen a house we like online, planning to view it soon..

Just wondered if anyone lives in one and can share any pitfalls etc.. or anything we should know/think about if we do really like it and decide to go for it.

Oldandcobwebby Mon 16-Sep-13 12:09:07

There always seems to be loads of barn conversions for sale. I suspect that they are buggers to heat!

NigelMolesworth Mon 16-Sep-13 12:10:49

My parents live in a barn conversion. They get a lot of spiders as they live inside the stone walls...

mateysmum Mon 16-Sep-13 12:17:43

We recently bought one. There are lots of different types of barn. Ours was only about 70yrs old and was converted 8 yrs ago by the people we bought from. I love it. It is full of light and very open to the garden All the downstairs rooms have full length windows. It has been very well designed and built. I love all the wood and the general "airiness" and the combination of new and old.

Pitfalls of barns... they are often not in the best place on the plot or in relation to other buildings as usually they were part of a group of farm buildings. Depending on the structure and the quality of the conversion, some bedrooms may not have perfect windows and may have restricted height eaves, whilst downstairs there may be very high ceilings which look great but need a lot of heating.

Our barn is roughly square, but some can be long and thin so rooms are stretched out.

Also is it listed? If so, you need to be happy with it more or less as is as external alterations may be difficult.

Can you put the Rightmove link on the thread then we can be nosey advise you?

After 2 yrs of looking it took me 30 secs to fall in love with my barn - maybe that will happen to you too.

Merrylegs Mon 16-Sep-13 12:29:00

I live in a barn conversion. Obviously most barns are rural so things to think about include being connected to services (we are not on gas, water or sewage mains,), listed building (we are grade 2 so can't alter the outside). Double height ceilings v tricky to clean cobwebs. Lots tend to be open plan. But ours is warm (thick walls/aga/woodburner). Oh and when kids leave doors open you can say 'were you born in a barn' and they say 'no, but we live in one'. Hilarious.

pigleychez Mon 16-Sep-13 12:58:02

Merrylegs- I can soo hear DD1 saying that! smile

Not a listed building and in a small development of 7 houses all going round a large pond.

I think one of my main concerns was heating it. Would it be chilly? No ide if it had Double glazing or not... doesnt say in the description.But then i guess as its not listed we could add this.

www.wardandpartners.co.uk/_assets/pdfs/11331665.pdf

mateysmum Mon 16-Sep-13 13:38:50

The energy rating is quite good and it doesn't look to be double height, so I think it will be OK to heat. Some of the bedrooms look a bit long and narrow.

Garden looks nice on Rightmove, but Kitchen may need an update.

Go for it!

dottygamekeeper Mon 16-Sep-13 13:46:52

I live in a barn conversion - like posters above I love the open plan design, double height ceilings and loads of light from barn door windows, but have similar issues with cobwebs, and although it is double glazed, it is expensive to heat and open plan is not for everyone. However, looking at the floor plan and photos you linked to, you shouldn't have the issue with double height and heating/ reaching cobwebs and the kitchen and study would give you some space away from the open plan living/dining room.

Our barn is stand alone with no farmhouse/other dwellings nearby - as the one you linked to is semi-detached, I would want to check which were the adjoining walls with neighbours - I am guessing it is where the bedrooms 3 & 4 are, so you might want to check sound insulation, also is there a shared driveway, sewerage etc? Is it oil fired central heating?

One thing I find in our barn is that although it is big, we have very little built in storage and wardrobes/cupboards are difficult to place because of the number and position of beams. Curtains/blinds are expensive because of the size of the windows.

Yes I moved here 25 years ago. They are not all the same, it depends on the shape of the original building. Ours was a long low building so the end result is very cottage like with low ceilings and sloping ceilings in the bedrooms. The rooms are large though. I love it.

Pluses.
Large floor area.
All rooms are bigger than average.
The benefits of a new build with the character of old.
No gas but lots of wood nearby for my multifuel stove.

Minuses.
No gas here.
Very rural.

Surprised that prevalence of spiders is a factor in choosing a house grin

Merrylegs Mon 16-Sep-13 14:03:50

It looks like the attached bit is the double height window. That is quite a lot of wall to be attached so I would be interested in neighbour noise. It could well be listed, but we have double glazing in our listed build so it can be done. We don't have curtains or blinds on our double height windows as we aren't overlooked but I agree about beams on walls etc making storage tricky. The garden is pretty but I wonder in a complex like that how much outside storage space you get.

I wanted one till I read what Nigel said ...aghh

NigelMolesworth Mon 16-Sep-13 17:12:19

To makes matters worse, the spiders are hairy and shed their skins grin

shock consisders move to highrise grin

pigleychez Mon 16-Sep-13 17:55:55

Merry- It looks like the side garden goes up behind the double garage and i think I can see a green house and shed. Plus with the double garage it could all go in there.

Matey- Yes Kitchen/utility room would be on the to do list!

Dotty- See what you mean about the lack of built in storage. Something to look for.

Thankfully DH will be working from home (part of the reason for moving) so could deal with any spiders grin

Thanks for your comments, all useful things to think about when we view.thanks

OliviaBenson Mon 16-Sep-13 19:45:39

Just to flag up- there is likely to still be restrictions on what you can and can't do externally (even if not listed) - ie replacement windows, extensions etc as permitted development rights are often removed to ensure that the barn character remains.

dottygamekeeper Mon 16-Sep-13 20:40:54

OliviaB makes a good point - our barn is not listed, but our permitted development rights have been removed and so we had to go to planning for example to alter a window into a French window. When we put up some stables they made us put on a special style of corrugated iron roofing which had to be done as a special order (therefore v expensive) to fit in with the character of the barn (even though none of the other outbuildings had that style of roof...). We also have a clause somewhere dictating what colour we can paint the outside - basically our weatherboarding has to be black and the render cream, although this is not something we would have wanted to change anyway.

Merry - we are not overlooked either, but in the winter I feel we should have curtains or something at our double height barn windows to help keep in the heat even though they are double glazed.

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