Archive for June, 2013

House Extensions Are A Great Way To Add Space And Value To Your Home

Thursday, June 27th, 2013

House Extensions Versus Moving House

With house prices rising and our pockets being significantly lighter, more and more people are now opting to create more living space by building house extensions as opposed to selling up.

Planning a house extension can be very exciting and although it can seem a somewhat pricey option, having a house extension can add significant value to your property, should yhouse extensions ideasou want to sell in the future. So house extensions really are a win, win option when you want to create more living space.

Financially it makes sense to extend or convert areas of your home instead of going to the cost and upheaval of moving. With detached house prices in Wales averaging a lofty £219,625 it’s hardly surprising that many of us are now opting for the cheaper option of building home extensions instead.

House extensions can take many forms including adding a conservatory, orangery, loft conversion or even a garage conversion. It will be down to your own personal circumstances and preferences as to which option you choose.  However,there are endless house extension ideas that you can choose from including;

Opting for a conservatory or orangery to make the most of relaxing with family and friends, especially during the summer months.

Transforming a barely used garage into a playroom for the children or a work from home office.

Swapping old boxes for a new bedroom in the loft.

House Extensions Can Satisfy Many Needs

House extensions can provide answers to many needs including;

Providing more living space to accommodate the growth of the family or as an extra room for a relative or lodger.

Improve a current living space e.g. increase a small kitchen, provide an extra bathroom or even as an extra room to accommodate the ever increasing flexibility of working from home.

Acting as an investment by increasing your home to be in line with the size of your plot or to make it in line with other larger sized houses in the neighbourhood.

Whatever your own reasons for having a house extension, without a doubt house extensions will not only create more space but will add value to your property too, so they really are worth the initial investment.

House Extensions Run Smoother When You Consult The Experts

The first question most people ask before considering having house extensions is how much does a house extension cost.

Unfortunately there is no easy answer to this as the costs will vary greatly depending on the size and location of the proposed house extension and what materials are required so it really is a case of getting a quote from a reputable builder.

Most reputable builders now offer free, no obligation quotes, for house extensions, so there really is nothing to lose by asking for a free quote.

As with any other building project it is wise to seek professional help before you go ahead with any house extensions, in order to avoid any unnecessary stress and sleepless nights.

Take time to carry out research to find the best qualified architect and builders in your area who can examine your plans and discuss your house extension options with you, including advising you on whether your house extension plans need planning permission.

Appoint a time for any house extensions with your appointed builder to a time that suits your family commitments. House extensions can be disruptive so make sure that you take this into account. Just think; would you want your house extension to take place during the six weeks summer holiday when your children are off school!

Also you need allow for any hiccups that may happen to delay the time frame for your house extension.

Some people appoint a project manager to oversee any house extension projects in order to reduce on stress; however this can be a costly exercise, especially if your budget is tight.

The good news is that some building companies will also offer this service,so if you’re looking to have someone to oversee the project, this might be something to consider.

As always, take care to check out your preferred builders credentials before appointing them for any house extensions; ensuring to check their work portfolio and their customer testimonials.

Just remember good house extensions aren’t cheap and cheap extensions aren’t good…in fact they can be downright dangerous. So take care to appoint the best builder for the job.

For anyone thinking of having house extensions in  South Wales , we offer free, no obligation quotes and also can provide testimonials as proof of our high quality workmanship.

Derwood Homes


Planning a garage conversion? What do you need to know?

Tuesday, June 25th, 2013

Garage conversion: How much does it cost to convert a garage?

Having a garage conversion is quickly becoming one of the most popular choices for people wanting to create more living space.

Converting a garage can be a great way to create extra livingarage conversiong space that can be employed for a variety of uses including providing a play room for the children, a work from home office or even a personal gym.

Let’s be honest, garages, in many cases, can be a waste of valuable space, often used to simply store half tins of paint or other unwanted items that have been discarded.

So with a move to a bigger house being a bit of a challenge (to say the least) due to the current economic climate and the need for extra room rising by the day, having a garage conversion can provide the perfect solution.

However, before you start getting all excited and start thinking about converting a garage into a room of your choice, here are a few things to take into consideration when deciding on a garage conversion.

There are many possibilities for converting a garage into a room, but you will need to ensure that your budget can accommodate your requirements. Making plans for the future can be very exciting but it is easy to get carried away and start planning towards an unattainable goal.

So how much does a garage conversion cost?

Garage conversions are a walk in the park compared to other home remodelling projects but that doesn’t mean that you can slack on your home work. The great thing about having a garage conversion is that there is already a solid structure in place to work with and therefore they often take less time to complete.

That said, there is often still a lot of paperwork, logistics and planning to be done, so it’s best to get started on this as soon as possible in order to avoid a nightmare in the future with your garage conversion project.

It is obviously difficult to give an accurate cost for converting a garage as each garage conversion will be different. However as a guideline, garage conversions cost on average anything between £8000.00 – £10,000.00

Garage Conversion: Room Layout

When you plan the room layout of your garage conversion, you will first of all need to think about what kind of doors you’ll want, how many you will need as well as where they’ll be located. Then there’s the question of windows…where will you want them and how large will you want them to be? And how do you want the exterior to look?

You will also need to take other factors into consideration too such as installing electrical points, radiators and storage.

VentilationGarage Conversion Specialists South Wales

Ventilation also plays a very important part when having a garage conversion.

Windows need to have open able vents of an are equal to 1/20th of the floor space and if your garage conversion is only accessible via another room, then the window must have a clear opening of 45×73.3cm due to health and safety regulations.


Garage floors aren’t exactly ideal for a habitable room and are generally at ground level and not at your property’s level, which can contravene fire safety regulations.

One of the options of overcoming this issue is by raising the room’s floor.  Any reputable builders will be able to offer the best approach to take with this issue as well as finding the best way to stop damp from rising from the ground.

Another point to consider when converting a garage into a room is how will you fill it? What furniture do you need and where will the furnishings be placed?

This may seem a little premature, but planning your furniture ahead will help to give you a clearer picture of what your brand new room will look like.

Garage conversion: Choosing the right builder for the job

Okay so you have decided that you want a garage conversion to create extra space, you have planned what you will use the room for and how it will be laid out; the next stage (and the most important part) is to allocate the job to a reputable builder.

How do you choose the best builder?

There will be plenty of choice when it comes to building services and all of the builders will claim to be the best for the job. However, if you want to have your dream garage conversion and not a building disaster, you will need to select your builder very carefully.garage conversion choosing a reputable builder

Some words of advice to take on board: Try not to make your choice solely on price. It might be tempting to opt for the cheapest but remember when a price sounds too good to be true, they usually are! Reputable builders only employ qualified tradesmen who command a good salary due to their qualifications.

Therefore beware of rogue builders who offer cheap prices due to them employing cheap labour or ones that will add sneaky “extras” at the end of the job in the knowledge that you will be forced to pay in order for them to complete your garage conversion.

Therefore to ensure that your garage conversion runs smoothly, make sure that you hire a local building company that has a good reputation. A good builder will be able to show you examples of their good workmanship and will also be able to offer testimonials from other satisfied customers.

Meet up with prospective builders and discuss your plans and ask any questions that you may have…and remember there is no such thing as a stupid question!

Most reputable local builders will even offer free quotes and will be only too happy to show you proof of their good workmanship as reassurance for you.

There are many aspects to having a garage conversion, but hopefully some of the hints and advice offered within this blog will be able to point you in the right direction.

If you would like further advice regarding planning a garage conversion in Cardiff, Bridgend or anywhere else in South Wales, please feel free to contact us and we will be happy to provide you with advice or a free, no obligation ,quote.

Yours Truly
Derwood Homes



Benefits of Loft Conversion in Bridgend / Porthcawl

Wednesday, June 19th, 2013

There has never been a better time to plan a loft conversion. Whether you need the extra space, long for another room or are looking to add value to your property, house loft conversions and bungalow loft conversions,are becoming more popular by the day.

Benefits Of A Loft Conversion-Creating Extra Space

There are countless benefits to having a loft conversion; the most obvious being the extra space it can create. Perhaps you’re planning to start a family and needing that extra bedroom, looking for a play or games room for the little ones or in need of a home office.

loft conversions ideas


In Porthcawl over 44% of properties are three-bedroomed houses and space can run out in the blink of a home delivery – especially with a growing brood or even a home business in tow. Whatever the reason, carrying out a loft conversion in situations like these will provide you with the much needed extra living space that need for a fraction of the cost of moving.

We all love the idea of owning bigger houses but in this economic climate this can be a pipe dream for most. With the average house prices in Porthcawl at £285,206 and our pockets being considerably lighter than they were a decade ago, this can look a little ambitious. Adding the extra room with a loft conversion, will not only provide the needed space but will also add value to your property.  Therefore, having a loft conversion makes more sense economically if you need the room but aren’t looking to buy a new home.

 Benefit Of A Loft Conversion- Adding Value To Your Property

When the day comes that you are looking to move property, a loft that has been converted is extremely attractive to buyers and has the potential to add somewhere in the ballpark of £15,000 – £35,000 on to your house’s value. However, houses which are on sale in Porthcawl are generally on the market for an average of 240 days, which can be a long time – especially if the need for space is urgent.

Whereas loft conversions in Porthcawl generally take (from start to finish) approximately 1-3 months which is a great saving of your time.  That means spending more time with your loved ones, making the best use of your new room and not worrying about selling or purchasing a new property.

There is so much potential for loft conversions, not least, adding a balcony or windows to fully appreciate beautiful views.

In practical terms, planning permission isn’t usually required, but when it is, it’s reportedly a very straight forward process.

Benefits Of A Loft Conversion-Getting It Right

Here are some key questions that you should consider before you decide whether or not a loft conversions is for you:

 Request a quote from a loft conversion expert who can advise whether or not your roof is suitable for this modification

– Double check if you need planning permission to build a loft conversion on your home by contacting Bridgend County Borough Council on (01656) 643177

– Find a great architect to work with; they play an important part in ensuring that your loft conversion goes smoothly.

– Create a realistic budget for the work and make sure you are aware of all the costs upfront

– Consider how you’d look to insulate your new room and make sure it complies with building regulations

– What kind of staircase would suit both your room and the rest of your home along with ensuring that you meet with fire safety regulations and making sure that it can  be easily used by children (if applicable)

– Schedule the work at a time that you and your family will be comfortable with.  Building a loft conversion can be disruptive at times and can take up to a couple of months so make sure that both you and the company agree on a time-frame to carry out the project.

Bungalow Loft conversionThere are various benefits to having a loft conversion in Bridgend / Porthcawl especially for anyone interested in expanding their living space or adding significant value to their property.

Having a loft conversion is definitely a realistic, practical and utterly worthwhile option.

If you’re planning a loft conversion in Bridgend, Cardiff, Caerphilly,  Porthcawl or the South Wales area and would like us to advise you on the best approach to take, simply contact us and we will be happy to arrange to provide you with a FREE quotation.

Yours Truly

Derwood Homes