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Can't decide whether to extend or do a garden office.

(31 Posts)
VivaLeBeaver Mon 23-Dec-13 16:22:37

We could do with a bit more living space/teen hangout.

Currently have a sitting room, large kitchen/diner and a utility room downstairs.

Option one is to extend across the back of the house, full width. We'd get a second sitting room overlooking the garden with a small loo. Seeing as we don't have a downstairs loo then I guess that's a bonus, though lack of loo doesn't bother me too much. We'd have a sofa, TV in it. Downside is that I need space for dd's drum kit (electric kit) so that would be part of the house but she can turn the volumne down I guess. Current kitchen/diner would become an internal room which I'm not sure I'm keen on.

Option two is to get a really good quality garden office. Properly insulated, plastered, under floor heating, electricity. Would be a really cool space for dd and her friends. Drum kit would be well out the way. I'm guessing it would be quite a bit cheaper than an extension and less hassle. Just concerned it wouldn't be used as much???

Any thoughts?

MisForMumNotMaid Mon 23-Dec-13 16:29:13

Is this your house for life? I.e. Do you need to recoup what you spend at some point if you move.

Have neighbouring/ nearby properties extended? Are there likely
to be any planning issues

How is your current house value in relation to your street upper value/ limit? If you're already the highest value house in the street is there a risk any investment could be lost.

VivaLeBeaver Mon 23-Dec-13 17:35:43

I'd say its a house for life.

Next door have extended (we're a semi) so can't see it been an issue. Although I can see us having a boundary dispute if we extend. Next door basically extended the dividing wall into their garden when they did the extension so are right on the boundary. I'd want to build right up to the wall but they've got pipes, etc coming off the wall overhanging our boundary. I did point this out to neighbour once and he got arsey and said the extension was 6" inside the boundary. There's no way it is, so we'd have to sort that.

Our house is mid way price range in the street. There's four semis, and the other three are extended so we'd be the cheapest. Then there's terrace houses further down and over the road its detached houses.

VworpVworp Mon 23-Dec-13 17:40:41

How rainy is it in your area?
Do you have teenagers you'd like respite from? (either you going down the garden, or them!)
What is the age of your home?
What is the style of your garden? (suited to an outbuilding?)

BackforGood Mon 23-Dec-13 17:43:02

I think a garden office would have really limited use, tbh. The very fact you have to go outside on a day like today, when it's dark, windy, and chucking it down with rain, would mean people just wouldn't bother to go out there. I definitely think an extension to the house is the way to go. Would it be worth having a consultation with an architect to see if there are other ways of configuring it so your kitchen diner doesn't get trapped in the middle of the house ?

VivaLeBeaver Mon 23-Dec-13 17:59:44

We're in the midlands. House is late Victorian/early Edwardian. Garden is massive. I have a teenager who often has friends over and yes sometimes it would be nice to hide away.

VivaLeBeaver Mon 23-Dec-13 18:00:56

An architect is a good idea. Do they give you an idea on price or do you have to pay them to design something first and then ask builders for quotes?

Never used an architect before. Are they expensive?

noddyholder Mon 23-Dec-13 18:03:08

After 22 years with a drummer I say get the garden room

VivaLeBeaver Mon 23-Dec-13 18:15:15

I think you may be right Noddy.

I can about cope with spending 12k on a glorified shed to keep dd and her drum kit out of sight and hearing.

I'm worried if I spend 30k on an extension nobody apart from dd will use it as she'll be drumming all the time. I guess she goes to school, though I'm normally at work.

noddyholder Mon 23-Dec-13 18:23:32

We have had in house drums and garden drums and garden was great. Dp used to teach in our old garage and it was a nightmare 8 yr old boys with NO RHYTHM

BackforGood Mon 23-Dec-13 20:21:58

er - not sure about the architect thing - although I remember reading on here a few months ago someone posted a link to a National scheme where architects would offer a free advice session, but sorry, can't remember what to search for - you might find it if you played around for a bit or if you did another thread with architects in the title ??

VivaLeBeaver Mon 23-Dec-13 20:27:41

Ok, will have a hunt for that. Thanks.

VworpVworp Mon 23-Dec-13 21:07:31

I think that's a special week, where they do that free advice thingy... can't remember the name of it, sorry.

CookieDoughKid Mon 23-Dec-13 21:57:38

If you spent on a dedicated external space in your garden, you could probably take it with you if you moved. However, I think a properly done extension would provide a better resale factor as it is integral to the house and saves a buyer from the hassle of doing him/herself later on.

I would definitely get several opinions from estate agents and see whether the maths make it profitable/break even for you.

ContentedSidewinder Mon 23-Dec-13 21:57:55

If you have a massive garden then I would go for the garden room.

We converted a double garage to use as a playroom den for my two sons and whilst it is fantastic having somewhere to store all their crap toys/wii/coats/shoes/hoover etc the noise travels. And they are 10 and 7.

My nephew is a drummer (he has headphones for his) but you can still hear the dull thud of the drum pad.

An extension is likely to cost a lot more money, cause issues as no doubt your next door neighbour wouldn't be happy and the garden room would only disrupt the garden for a while rather than the length of time it would take to complete an extension.

I have just had a 2.5 x 3m kitchen extension done and I had amazing builders and it ran like clockwork but it was still stressful and messy.

My architect cost about £350 ish, I had already drawn scaled plans of both the garage conversion and the kitchen extension. He came recommended via the builder. I knew the builder first.

There is a TV program called My Flat Pack home where a lot of them are garden rooms, they go up in days. It is presented by Amanda Lamb on one of the property channels on Sky. Very fast and "turn key" so all the electrics/plumbing etc is included in the price they give you.

Millais Mon 23-Dec-13 21:59:33

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

VivaLeBeaver Mon 23-Dec-13 22:02:11

Thanks for your thoughts. Am leaning more towards the garden room now. Will check the TV programme out, sounds good. I'm busy trawling Pinterest for ideas as well!

VivaLeBeaver Mon 23-Dec-13 22:23:23

Millais, how big is your garden room?

Ndebe1 Tue 24-Dec-13 06:14:43

i think they mean "architect in the home"
we used architect on 1/2 day sessions. good value to get ideas and see potential. plenty of kit solutions. need to plan carefully to get full value for money.

batteryhen Tue 24-Dec-13 07:29:05

We converted our garage and DH has his drums in there. There is also a sofa bed, tv and dvd player too so dsd stays in there when she stays over. Its a good space and well used!

Millais Tue 24-Dec-13 20:12:46

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

VivaLeBeaver Tue 24-Dec-13 20:19:40

Thanks Millais. Good to hear it warms up ok.

Haven't got a garage so that's not an option. Will look into different brands/makes of garden rooms now.

Kitttty Tue 24-Dec-13 20:33:17

Does planning regs dictate that you have to have the garden room a minimum distance from the house?

What about converting the loft to a functioning den - cheap boarding, light heat and insulation?

VivaLeBeaver Tue 24-Dec-13 20:36:32

The loft is full of stuff, stuff I'd have to put somewhere else if we converted. Plus dh says we have weird joists or beams or something up there which would make conversion difficult. And drumming in the loft would drive me nuts.

Planning permission isn't an issue as long as office is 2.5m or less in height. They're all 2.5m high because of this.

VivaLeBeaver Tue 24-Dec-13 20:42:25

I'm looking at Tiny Houses how. How cool are these?

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