As a parent of two teenagers, the space we have in our home is something that’s been on my mind a lot lately and I’ve been considering the various different options we have to give us a little more space at home.
Our house isn’t a small house but it’s definitely not a big one either – we have a new build three bedroomed semi with an average sized garden and an integral garage which means that we definitely have options if we decide to extend.
We’ve ruled out the idea of an actual extension because of the costs involved and the fact that we don’t want all of the upheaval and hassle that will come with an extension – we just want a little extra space and these are the options we think we have…
The first thing we thought of was a garage conversion which would be the most cost-effective way of getting more space as we can do some of the work ourselves and the work we can’t do doesn’t seem like it would be too bad. The downside to this would be the fact that we’d be losing the storage element of the garage which is something we’d definitely miss although there would be the option to keep a proportion of the garage at the back for storage if we were to put up a wall in there and just convert the front. I’m not convinced that the space we’d get from doing that would be worth the hassle and the cost though.
The next thing we considered was a conservatory like we had in our old house but I just have memories of it being too hot in the Summer and too cold in the Winter. I know that you can buy all sorts of expensive glass and blinds now that I’m told would help massively so that’s definitely something to consider.
While I was searching for ideas on costs and designs for conservatories I came across something I’d not heard of before – an Orangery which seems to be a bit of a conservatory/extension hybrid. It’s built less from glass and more from brick which makes it more usable in my eyes yet it still has the glass roof and the big windows that would let in all the light.
An orangery seems to come in at a price much lower than an extension but higher than a standard conservatory and considering the benefits, I think it’s what we’re after. I could pop a desk in there for me and a couple of comfy settees for when the kids have their friends round – I might even move the Xbox into there too although I like the idea of it being a technology-free room really.
So now we’ve decided what we’re after, we just need to work out how we’ll pay for it. 😉
Of course, we could save for the work we want doing but one other thing that we’re looking at is releasing some of the equity in our house. We’ve lived here for about nine years now and have made a dent in our mortgage with our monthly payments and the odd overpayment so taking that into account along with the fact that the house has increased in value makes this option worth considering for us.
I’ve just had a play with the tool over on the Sun Life website which tells you how much your house could have made you and it looks like the property prices here have gone up a reasonable amount since we bought it. That prompted me to jump on Right Move to see what similar houses are selling for around here and the Sun Life figure is a pretty good estimate.
I’ve got a lot to think about but I’ll definitely keep you updated.
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