Why move? Find a cost effective way to improve where you are Increasingly my clients are asking me to find ways of adding space to their existing properties to avoid the disruption of moving. As with individually designed houses, this is an opportunity to adapt a property to individual needs. If you like an area, use the local facilities, why move? Finding a cost effective solution to changing circumstances and a growing family is a design challenge I enjoy and warrants as much attention as any project regardless of size.

How buildings are used, how the spaces flow, how they adapt for entertaining and as children and all of us get older are important considerations. Overall the budget constraints are ultimately the limiting factor but achieving the best possible design solution within this is my aim. There is little point exceeding a budget and the local market considerations on property values.

Sustainability matters Improving Thermal performance and sustainability are important design issues I integrate from the outset. Improving the thermal performance of existing buildings is a big challenge to help meet climate change targets. To do this for its own sake, whilst commendable, can cause so much disruption that few householders implement improvements. However, if other alteration or extension works are planned, it is an ideal opportunity to carry out general improvements. I help my clients consider the most cost effective and least disruptive options available and how best to incorporate energy saving ideas into a project. If we all do our best to improve something, the combined result will go a long way to reducing the countries carbon emissions.

The planning system can appear a daunting challenge to deal with and my role is to help people understand it and carry out the necessary applications. I can advise on what is achievable under permitted development rights, where a prior approval notice is required and where householder or full planning applications are required. As I carry out a lot of work within conservation areas, I can explain what additional information will be required by the Local Authority.

The examples shown here are of successful projects where careful investigation and understanding of my customers needs has lead to a solution that wasn’t initially envisaged.

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