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Expand or renovate?

Are you thinking of expanding your living space? Conservatories became very popular in Victorian and Edwardian times, and with the introduction of modern building techniques, they have become an affordable and much-wanted addition. They are also a great way to open your space and provide a large flow through the house and into the garden, making them perfect in better weather.

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For many people, they are the ideal way to get more space without moving house. In many cases, you don’t even need planning permission, and as long as it is well made, they are almost guaranteed to add value to your property.

They can be used as a sunroom, dining room, breakfast room, family room, study room, or kitchen. One of the apparent advantages of conservatories over other types of extensions is they allow light and warmth from the garden while simultaneously protecting it from the elements. For Oak Framed Extensions, consider timberpride.co.uk/oak-framed-extension/

Most conservatories won’t require planning permission, but as local authorities might have differing regulations, always check with your local planning office for advice. Here are some general rules:

  • Separate or semi-detached houses can be extended up to 70 cubic metres, and this includes previous extensions that already exist.
  • You might struggle to get planning permission granted if the conservatory takes up more than half of the garden. Also, the conservatory should not be 20 metres or less from the public road or footpath.
  • If your conservatory sticks out from the boundary of the house more than 3 metres, then planning permission will likely be denied because it will be detrimental to your neighbours’ enjoyment of their property.

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A conservatory is usually built behind the property, leading to the garden, although it is possible to have it on the side or in front. Because they are made to feel like an integral part of the garden, they are almost always constructed on the ground floor. Different aspects bring different strengths and weaknesses, so you must immediately consider the direction you want the conservatory to face at the planning stage.

  • Facing south – This is the perfect position to catch the rays. However, it gets boiling with the sun overhead during the summer, so you might think about installing vents and curtains and need a fan.
  • Facing East – This will create morning sun, which is ideal for the breakfast room. It will not be too hot in the middle of the day or night.
  • Facing West – This will keep the sun from the evening onwards and provide suitable conditions for many plants. Good for sitting in the afternoon/evening after work.
  • Facing north – This will make the sun tilt at the beginning and end of the day, and although it is not too hot in summer, it can be freezing in winter.


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