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conservatory, yay or nay?

(33 Posts)
misdee Mon 11-Apr-05 10:47:16

we are running out of space here and cant see how else we can extend our living area. bedrooms we can cope with being small but not living areas IYKWIM. sister has had a conservatory built and tbh i dont like hers, they dont have any blinds or heating/cooling system in palce so in winter its freezing and in summer its burning.

are conservatories a good idea? i dont think the council will extend the bungalow for us as we're within the 5 person limit. and we cant get a bigger bungalow or move to a house as dh cant walk upstairs.

MandM Mon 11-Apr-05 11:05:22


I love my conservatory!

We were in the same situation as you, running out of living space downstairs with no other room to extend.
To give you an idea, ours is 15' x 13' (approx. can't remember exactly) and we had it linked into our central heating system with a Victorian cast iron radiator from a Reclaimers yard put onto the exposed brickwork on the back wall of the house and we have a remote controlled fan/light on the ceiling.
Apart from really cold winter days we use it all year round and love it. We have two 'proper' settees in there and a widescreen TV linked into our Sky Digital so it really feels like an extra room that is part of the house rather than an 'added on' bit IYKWIM.
One other good idea which I'm glad we went for and nearly didn't is a row of little windows round the top that open. Good for letting extra air in during the summer.

Donbean Mon 11-Apr-05 11:10:38

Its our next project! I want to use it as a play room though for ds plus any more that come along. I will probably use it for the mountains of toys etc which are at present strewn around our house.
I think its a cracking idea myself

NannyJo Mon 11-Apr-05 11:13:53

we have one but didn't get it fitted into our central heating system, never use it in winter.
Gonna get radiator in this year to make it into a play room. love it in the summer though

coldtea Mon 11-Apr-05 11:27:41

We love ours too. We went with an edwardian one to maximise space.

We went as big as we could i think it was built 22ft x 12ft, that's the outside measurement. Like MandM we use it as an extra room we have a 2&1/2 seat sofa , a 2 seat sofa & an armchair in there. We had one wall built high with no glass & on this is a plazma screen which looks fantastic. We also have a table & chairs in there. It is really worth shopping around as we saved &6,000 by doing so.

My top tip is to buy an air conditioning unit which blows out hot in the winter & cold in the summer. I really don't think we could use it all year round without this & it only takes a few minutes to heat or cool.

tigi Mon 11-Apr-05 12:12:08

I adore mine! It really is the best thing we ever did. I sat it in it yesterday and it was 90 degrees before I opened two little windows. I have two nice cane settes in there, and its just lovely to chill and have a cuppa in there. We keep it a child free zone if we can, which makes it feel all the more special! I had a christmas tree in there this year and it felt just lovely. I have a friend who has a conservaory with a beautiful glass dining table in there. Looks lovely but they NEVER go in there. I said to myself that I would only use a chunk of my garden up if I would use it all the time.
COLDTEA, which aircon unit did you buy? is it one of those dragon things?

coldtea Mon 11-Apr-05 18:29:07

Tigi , i'm not sure what the dragon thing is! My friends dad owns an air conditioning business & we bought it through him. I think it's a 4kw Daikin , we paid £1700 for it(including fitting) & that was discounted , i'm not sure if that's expensive but it's worth every penny.

juniperdewdrop Mon 11-Apr-05 18:32:53

I haven't got one but everyone I know swears by theirs. We had a hexagonal cedar wood summerhouse built at the end of the garden and just had electric put in it so we can use it all year round. It only seats 4 so not as big as a conservatory but I put conservatory furniture in it Tbh it's the only tidy room we have

JoolsToo Mon 11-Apr-05 18:33:53

think of all those windows to clean

and E-cloth might help

juniperdewdrop Mon 11-Apr-05 18:34:23

Ooooh coldtea, yours sounds gorgeous!

juniperdewdrop Mon 11-Apr-05 18:35:25

I just bought a 'magic' cloth that looks the same as an E cloth (sorry to go off subject ) from the pound shop so I will report back with results.

JoolsToo Mon 11-Apr-05 20:08:08

Please do - £1?! - my E-cloth was a fiver!

coldtea Mon 11-Apr-05 20:08:44

I wouldn't dream of cleaning all those windows. I get the window cleaner to do them!

Thank-you juniperdewdrop we're really pleased with how it turned out , if we were to move i would want to take it with me .

Whizzz Mon 11-Apr-05 20:16:43

YES ! Ours is brill & is a real retreat from Nick Jr !! But watch it if you plan to link up to your central heating as if you do (or if you don't have doors between it & your house) you are supposed to abide by Building regs which can add quite a bit in terms of cost (only an issue if you come to sell). This is because it then counts as more like an extension apparently so you have to have certain standards for glass / roof structure etc. We have an elecric oil filled radiator which heats up fast so is not a problem. Best thing we ever did !

coldtea Mon 11-Apr-05 20:30:26

Something else we did was to put sky+ in there , we would've had to pay for an extra box so it made sense to get it. Great for when ds is watching his cartoons as we still get to watch our sky programmes!

Lonelymum Mon 11-Apr-05 20:33:04

Only if your garden is big enough to take it, I would say. We viewed a house the other day which had been so extended (beautifully I have to add) including a conservatory, that there was scarcely any garden left.

PrettyCandles Mon 11-Apr-05 20:40:22

Be careful where you place a conservatory, and its entrance. The room which opens to the conservatory might become a bit of a corridor, so in that case it might be better to have a door at the side, rather than french windows in the middle. Also, make sure that you don't put the conservatory on a north-facing wall, even if that's the main wall to the garden, because then you won't get any sun on it. A sunny side-wall might be a better position in that case.

I don't actually have one myself (though I covet one , but am the veteran of countless house-viewings .

cod Mon 11-Apr-05 20:53:53

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cod Mon 11-Apr-05 20:54:21

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binkybetsy Mon 11-Apr-05 21:10:52

We just had our old one rebuilt as the hardwood one was taking too much maintenence. We extended it as well. It's now 6mx 4m and has underfloor heating in. One wall is full (bricks) and the corners are brick pillars, rest is glass to get away from the traditional conservatory look. Glass roofing instead of polycarbonate is extremely expensive mind. The position of the build is key if you don't want to cook, but new materials for roofing mean that a lot of the sun can be filtered so it doesn't get too hot. We use ours as our main living room. We have sofa's in there etc.
Finally, what would you realistically use if for and will it be big enough? We know a few friends who got small conservatories in quite small gardens and now have an expensive corridor from their living room to the garden that can't fit much furniture in. Now they have kids and very little garden left

cod Mon 11-Apr-05 21:13:10

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blueteddy Mon 11-Apr-05 21:16:26

I spend a lot of time in mine because it is where the pc is!!!
Ours has made such a difference to our living space.
We have moved the dining table into the conservatory (so we use it as a dining room)
We also keep the childrens toy boxes in it & obviously the pc etc.
We have also had a radiator fitted in ours, so that it does not get too cold in the winter!

JoolsToo Mon 11-Apr-05 21:18:09

I've never heard of non-clean glass? anyone care to point me in the right direction?

cod Tue 12-Apr-05 08:31:49

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cod Tue 12-Apr-05 08:33:04

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