Table of Contents

1. Conversion Home

When it comes to renovating a building, conversions are a type of project that involves making significant changes to the structure. Unlike renovations, which may only require cosmetic updates or minor modifications, conversions involve altering the load-bearing structure and/or layout of the building. Therefore, it’s essential to carefully consider the existing load-bearing structure when undertaking a conversion project in London. It’s not uncommon for major renovation work to be classified as a conversion project, resulting in multiple terms being used to describe the project, such as “general renovation with conversion.” Structural modifications that are a part of a conversion project require extensive verification, including the existing building. This necessitates early and often intrusive material and construction process checks, such as opening up a concrete ceiling to verify the type and location of reinforcement. Professional design services are crucial when undertaking a conversion project in London, particularly when making changes to the layout or access points. Additional planning work is also necessary when undertaking a conversion project. Partial conversions, which involve making significant changes to only a portion of the building, are similar to partial renovations. In summary, conversions involve significant modifications to a building’s structure, including changes to the load-bearing structure and/or layout. Such projects require thorough verification, professional design services, and additional planning work. When undertaking a conversion project in London, it’s essential to consider the existing load-bearing structure and to seek the help of qualified professionals.

2. Complete Refurbishment Home

General refurbishment, also called complete refurbishment, involves extensive dismantling work that reduces the building to a shell while retaining the primary construction. This type of refurbishment includes replacing the infrastructure and retrofitting all building components to meet current laws and standards. Though it can be costly, it results in a building that is almost like new, with virtually all components having a warranty that meets current standards and laws. In contrast, simple renovations may not guarantee the same level of warranty, as many components are left in their original condition. Planning for general refurbishment is similar to a new build since many uncertainties are eliminated. However, due to economic constraints, some weaknesses from the original building shell, such as missing horizontal damp-proof barriers, excessive ceiling deformations, or sound insulation weaknesses, may remain.

3. Gutting the House/Newbuild with Partial Preservation in London

Gutting a building in London is a process similar to constructing a new building, which frequently arises from a disagreement over preservation of historical buildings. In this process, the exterior façade is retained, but the interior is completely stripped and rebuilt. In London, this type of project may require planning permission, and the local authorities may impose specific conditions to ensure that the exterior façade is preserved as part of the project. It’s important to seek professional advice and guidance to ensure compliance with all relevant regulations and to avoid any potential legal issues.

4. Partial renovation

The concept of partial renovation involves specific and targeted refurbishment of particular areas of a building, such as the facade, ground floor, or wing. Managing such projects can be challenging since the building remains in use, and technical infrastructure may span the entire structure, leading to conflicts with users. To reduce these conflicts, it is recommended to provide advanced notice of the planned work and adhere to contractually agreed work times. However, working on inhabited buildings can still be disruptive, so it is advisable to set higher time and cost buffers for partial renovations. A budget should also be allocated to cover collateral damage to parts of the building not under renovation. Clients should also be informed of the risk of lost rent in let buildings where renovation-related issues such as noise and dust could negate or decrease the suitability of the rental property for its intended use.

5. Reconstruction House

Reconstruction is the process of reproducing a building, but strictly speaking, it involves constructing a new building based on old building constructions. The controversy surrounding reconstructions often centers on the level of faithfulness to the original building. Criticism is usually more intense when less of the original building is actually reconstructed. Despite being based on old designs, reconstructions are essentially new builds with no original structure. Therefore, the same rules and standards that apply to new builds, such as building codes, manufacturer guidelines, construction processes, construction time, and site management, also apply to reconstructions. During the planning stage, architects typically rely on existing sources and documents as buildings are rarely fully documented. In addition to reworking the original building’s sources, reconstruction also involves the current architect imitating the construction style of a particular era as an artistic concept.

6. Renovation House

Renovation work involves upgrading building components and surfaces that are still in good condition but outdated, without significant changes to the building’s structure and layout. It occupies a unique place between servicing and conversion, and the scope of work can vary widely depending on the extent of modernization needed.

7. Restoration House

Restoration involves adding to existing, unfinished building parts to match the style of the era, and is often seen as similar to reconstruction. The term originated during the Romantic period, when cultural monuments of the past became of great interest. Like reconstruction, restoration is a controversial topic, as it aims to preserve and reveal the aesthetic and historic value of a monument, but must stop where conjecture begins. However, this advice is often ignored due to a lack of original documents and confusion over what constitutes the original building. The concept of the “original” is often misapplied to architecture, which has never had a precise equivalent to this term. Expert debates on this topic have been ongoing for the past decade, and answers are often influenced by contemporary attitudes rather than universally accepted principles.

8. “Standard” renovation

Standard renovation means making changes to a place that will help it look new and show off its best features. It could mean repainting walls, replacing old flooring, or replacing old furniture. An example of standard renovation is when someone renovates their kitchen by installing new countertops and appliances.

It’s like taking a worn-out pair of shoes and giving them a polish. Standard renovation can make a place look more attractive and inviting. It also can add value to a home or building. The National Association of Realtors estimates that on average, a homeowner can recoup 65% to 80% of their renovation costs when they sell their home.

9. Home Extension

When you need more space in your home or building, a popular option is to build an extension, also known as an addition. An extension is a set of rooms constructed onto a building after its initial construction is complete. These additional rooms can be built on the rear, sides, or front of the building, or they can be added vertically as new storeys.

A well-designed home extension can provide you with the extra space you need, while also allowing you to stay in the location you love. Additionally, a properly executed home extension project can increase the value of your property. Home extensions are available in a wide range of styles and sizes, ensuring that you can find one that is perfect for your property and meets your specific needs.

10. Front house extension

Opting to extend the front of your home offers a significant advantage – your rear garden can remain intact. This type of extension can be used to expand your living room, create a new ground-floor bedroom, or add a new porch. However, as the front extension is visible at street level, it may attract more scrutiny during the planning process.

Compared to other types of extensions, extending the front of your home is relatively more convenient. You don’t need to move out of your home or endure significant inconvenience during the construction process, as the work should not impact essential living spaces like your kitchen or bathroom. This also allows you to monitor and participate in each stage of the project until it is completed.

11. Side of house extension

A side house extension is an excellent option for anyone looking to utilize an otherwise neglected alleyway space. By situating the extension to the side of your house, you can level off the rear of your home and create a compact yet transformative addition to your property. These extensions, although small, can be used to create stunning open-plan kitchen diners.

The best part is that you may not require a full planning application for your side house extension, making it an even more attractive option. With the right design and construction, you can transform your underutilized space into a valuable addition to your home.

12. Semi-detached house extension

If you own a semi-detached property, you have numerous options for extending it. Since only one side of your property is attached to a neighboring property, you and your architect can design an extension that won’t encroach on your neighbor’s privacy or result in any party wall issues. Additionally, semi-detached house extensions may be eligible for permitted development rights, which can be useful during the planning phase.

Semi-detached house extensions refer to any type of addition made to a semi-detached residence, which is a property that shares a wall with only one other house. These extensions come in a variety of styles and can serve a range of purposes depending on the needs of your family. For example, you could design a semi-detached house extension to serve as a kitchen, an extra bathroom or bedroom, a playroom, a lounge, or a utility room.

13. Terraced house extensions

Extending a terraced house may seem intimidating, but there’s no need to be concerned. While you will need to consider your neighbors’ privacy and their right to light, you’ll still have plenty of design choices. It’s important to note that your project is likely to impact a shared wall or boundary with one or both of your neighbors. In such a case, you’ll need to serve a party wall notice and obtain permission before beginning construction. Terraced houses, or “row homes,” are rows of similar houses that are joined together by their sidewalls. These houses can be quite small and are known for their relatively darker interiors. However, a terraced house extension provides an opportunity to convert your limited living space into a larger area and, with the right design, incorporate more natural light.

14. Rear house extensions

Extending the rear of your house is a popular choice for homeowners seeking to expand key living areas, such as the kitchen. A rear extension is an incredibly versatile addition that can be used to create all kinds of spaces, such as a ground floor bedroom, utility room, home office, or playroom. Popular glazing, like bi-fold doors, can be used to improve the connection between your home and garden and bring in plenty of natural light. Single storey rear extensions are a type of extension that consists of one level and is added to the back of your home. They’re an excellent way to create additional space while making the most of the existing space. As with most extensions, you can design single storey rear extensions to meet your family’s specific needs, whether it’s a study, kitchen, extra bathroom, or spare bedroom.

15. Flat-pack house extensions

Flat-pack or prefab extensions are a relatively new addition to the residential scene but have been growing in popularity over the past few years. These extensions are primarily built off-site, making them a cost-effective way to extend your home with shorter construction times, so you don’t have to live in a building site or rented accommodation for an extended period. However, one potential downside is that many flat-pack homes offer little to no customization, which can detract from one of the main benefits of extending your home: having a home tailored to your family’s needs.

A flat-pack extension is a type of home addition that is mainly built off-site in a workshop or factory. The extension is then delivered to your home and can be erected by the extension provider, a contractor of your choosing, or even a very handy homeowner. Flat-pack extensions come in a variety of options, including timber, steel, brick, and uPVC. The style of flat-pack extensions is as varied as traditional extensions.

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