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Lots of questions about kitchen extensions in Victorian houses

(20 Posts)
blabalalalablabla Thu 26-Apr-12 15:13:12

So, I have a Victorian semi and the kitchen has already been extended once by the previous owners outwards to where the bathroom would have been.

We now need a bit more space and don't really want to move so I'm looking at perhaps doing an extension into the side return and then out a couple of metres further into the garden to make a lovely big kitchen/family room with doors straight out into the garden.

Layout of the house is hallway, sitting room at the front. Hall straight into the dining room and then walk through to the kitchen.

What happens to the dining room when you do these projects? Wouldn't it be hideously dark if where the window was was now the back wall for the kitchen extension?

What is the average cost per m2 for extensions (I'm in east anglia if that helps)?

I have a drain where the side return is -Will this need to be re-routed?

Thank you!

minipie Thu 26-Apr-12 16:42:27

I don't have a side return extension myself but seen lots of houses with them.

The back sitting room/dining room does get a bit darker yes. It does still get some natural light because the side return extension roof is usually made of glass or has lots of skylights in it.

The window from the dining room into the side return becomes the door into the extension area, and usually people choose a door which is large and made of glass, or no door at all.

I think many people use that dining room as a TV room or as kids' playroom anyway, or as a dining room that's only used in the evenings, so aren't too bothered about it getting a bit darker.

Do you have any rooms on top of your kitchen? If not then you could put a glass lantern on top of the kitchen (not cheap but looks fab) which would then mean even more light gets through to the back room.

I think the drain would either need to be re-routed or boxed in in some way.

Cost per square metre I am not sure of. A lot depends on whether you would need to replace the existing kitchen, flooring, lighting etc, or not.

blabalalalablabla Thu 26-Apr-12 21:21:31

Thank you minipie - yes that makes sense to turn the window into the door - and a glass lantern would probably work. The kitchen is south facing so gets lots of light anyway.

I would need to put in a completely new kitchen, flooring etc, as the current one is about 40 years old - could live with it half done until saved up for a completely new kitchen.

The old dining room would turn into my office so I guess it wouldn't matter too much if it didn't have huge amounts of natural light - I'd worry that it would turn into a bit of a corridor though en route to the kitchen.

Pendeen Fri 27-Apr-12 00:32:51

What happens to the dining room when you do these projects? Wouldn't it be hideously dark if where the window was was now the back wall for the kitchen extension?

The area allowed for a rooflight would be determined (restricted) by Part 'L' of the building regulations (and part 'B' as well)

What is the average cost per m2 for extensions (I'm in east anglia if that helps)?

Not sure if this would help but similar projects I have designed (I am an architect) have cost between £1,100 and £2,00 per sq m in west Cornwall.

I have a drain where the side return is -Will this need to be re-routed?

If the drain only serves your property then encasing in concrete and ensuring the new foundations extend below the invert (lowest point of the pipe) would be sufficient. If it serves other properties then your water company will need to grant permission.

GrendelsMum Fri 27-Apr-12 09:38:31

An architect I spoke to this week (in East Anglia) suggested bugeting £2500 / m2 for a good quality, well insultated extension + 10% contingency, plus allowing that you will almost certainly find yourself doing additional works in the rest of the house as a knock on.

minipie Fri 27-Apr-12 10:04:02

I'd worry that it would turn into a bit of a corridor though en route to the kitchen.

Mmm yes in many victorian houses the back reception room is already divided off from the corridor - whereas yours sounds like the back reception goes all the way across the house so there is no separate hallway, right?

Perhaps you could divide off part of your back reception room to create a longer hallway, so the room is less of a corridor? Not necessarily with a wall, but with eg tall bookshelves/room divider units?

One other idea - some people don't fill in the whole side return, they leave a little "atrium" with no roof just outside the back reception room window. This has the advantage that the back reception room still gets some direct natural light via the atrium.

Jacaqueen Fri 27-Apr-12 13:49:15

We are about to do a similar extension.

In my victorian semi you do have to go through the back reception room to get to the kitchen.

We are turning the existing kitchen into a sitting area and extending out into the side return which will be the new dining area. The new kitchen will then go onto the back of this.
My neighbours house slightly cuts into the back of my old kitchen area so my new kitchen will be offset and protrude out beyond the existing gable and side return. This should stop the whole thing looking like one big open space.

The back reception will become a study/library. I am undecided what to do with the window as there is already a door that gives access to the new extension. At the moment I am minded to keep the window opening but remove the frame and replace it with plantation shutters or a piece of stained glass. We have a second window on the side wall of the house so light should not be a problem.

I could have turned the window into a door or combined the existing door and window to put in double doors into the extension. I could also have removed the wall completely but I thought this would be too much open plan for my liking. I like the idea of seeing where the existing old house ends and the new extension begins. I plan to keep the exposed sandstone wall and window ledge in what will be my new dining area.

As for cost I have no idea. We want to source the kitchen, windows, doors and flooring etc ourselves. Luckily DH has some contacts in the building trade so we should be able to get these items at cost price. I want a handpainted wooden kitchen so this will be outsourced to a proper cabinet maker though the builder will be doing the initial electrics and plumbing.

blabalalalablabla Fri 27-Apr-12 14:01:08

Ooh - thank you everyone.

Jacaqueen - V jealous of your plans - it sounds lovely. What's the rough size of your extension?

I was wondering about whether to turn the existing dining room into a kitchen and then having the existing kitchen and extension as an open plan dining/family room - this would mean one huge room though and lose the option of a study (which I need).

Jacaqueen Fri 27-Apr-12 14:29:13

I think the new kitchen and utility comes to 40sqm. I am not sure of the overall size. According to DH, the side return is really just 2 glass walls a floor and a roof and shouldn't cost that much hmm

It is difficult trying to decide exactly what you want. Once we have done this extension we will not be moving untill it is time for a retirement bungalow so I want to get it right.

At the moment I am going 9 rounds with the architect over the size of the utility. He also has a penchant for tall narrow windows which I do not share. I am sure we will get there in the end.

libelulle Fri 27-Apr-12 14:37:47

We're doing one right now - into the side return and out by about 2m into the garden, to create one big kitchen-diner at back of the house (with sliding-folding doors), about 5x6m in total. Have yet to see how dark the middle room of the house will be, but about half the side return roof will be veluxes, and we'll have fully glazed double doors into the middle room (which will be a playroom/music room). We also have separate access to the kitchen as the hallway goes right to the back of the house, past the middle room into the kitchen, iyswim.
We're in the same part of the country as you and the 'bare bones' cost (ie not including new kitchen) is going to be about 60k+vat, but that is for a double-height extension and new bathroom/bedroom upstairs. Having said that, the cost of this kind of thing varies dramatically according to the particular issues involved - in your case, it sounds like the drains probably would need rerouting - how exacting your requirements are (eg a fully glazed side return, rather than a couple of veluxes, would have added 10-15k to the cost.) and how posh your builders are (ours are not!).

AnnetteFraser Tue 22-May-12 15:06:20

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AnnetteFraser Tue 22-May-12 15:07:16

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minipie Tue 22-May-12 15:59:51

Hmmm Annette, that post looks suspiciously like advertising and it's your first post. Reported...

FriskyMare Tue 22-May-12 16:10:49

We are starting our kitchen extension in a couple of weeks.
We walk from hallway through dining room to kitchen (if that helps explain layout)
We are extending out into the side return but are an end terrace with an alleyway between us and the next terrace block, extension approimately 1.5m x 3.5m, will have a sloping roof with velux windows that will cut across the existing dining room window to hopefully let some light in, although these middle rooms always seem quite dark.
We have been quoted £15.5k for the building work, with electricals, kitchen units etc extra. Live in the NW though.
By the way, our drain runs along the side return, have an inspection done to make sure no problems before building work starts and then have an access point somewhere in the kitchen.

julietruly Sun 27-May-12 22:09:33

Hi all,this is my first post so i'l keep it short but my hubby is a builder not that it matters, but he say's a rough guide of £1400 per square meter,that is a floor area of new build as an average of course for a single story.

AnnetteFraser Wed 20-Jun-12 14:54:52

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tricot39 Thu 21-Jun-12 22:27:10

i have seen quite a few projects in london terraces where there is an extension on the back and infilling the side return. most of the back wall is taken out and most of the side wall is taken out. a nice layout is where the kitchen is toward the centre of the house, dining area towards the garden and big doors on to an outside patio.

you do need quite a lot of glass to keep the back room from getting dark. it can become an underused corridor if you are not careful.

we have a rear extension without the side area. we put in a big Sunsquare rooflight. lots cheaper than the atrium style ones and easier to clean. wish we had spent extra to get one that opened for ventilation and letting flies out!

AlisonThacker Mon 04-Nov-13 13:55:00

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pascalbuildteam Thu 13-Mar-14 15:43:55

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jennyl131 Thu 13-Mar-14 16:04:23

I've done it twice, but both times moved the kitchen into what becomes the "middle" room & left the new kitchen open plan to the extension.
Kitchens can cope better in dark rooms, you can use lots of reflective surfaces and task lighting, plus you benefit from having a living area that opens onto the garden and the kitchen literally as the hub of the home.
If you're not wedded to your current plans, it might be an option worth considering.
If you're not

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