An extra room looking on to the garden is a traditional choice for many UK homes, and whether it is a garden room, sunroom or conservatory, the variety available is vast. It’s certainly a great way to add value to your property; the one danger is it can end up looking like something bolted onto the side of the house, rather than an integrated part of the existing structure.
Neil Ginger, CEO at Origin, gives his top tips on how to avoid this, and ways to enhance the flow and overall size, whilst adding value.
What to Look For:
The debate over which material is best is seemingly never ending; we would always recommend an aluminium structure for the glass doors and windows as it is the strongest of the three acclaimed materials (timber, PVCu and aluminium). It’s strong and lightweight, so can support larger glass panels and allows for slimmer frames to let in more natural light. The colour will last too, unlike with PVCu, which can sometimes discolour. Timber will also need to be repainted over its lifetime. Aluminium, however, doesn’t discolour, rust or peel once powder coated, giving it a long-lasting attractive finish.
Fit Bi-folding Doors
A key feature of bi-folding doors is that they will open up an entire wall – perfect for a garden room feel. When the doors are folded back it will provide flawless transition, as the aperture will be clear, bringing the outside space into the home seamlessly and transforming the property into a functional open space for living, working and entertaining. Roof lights are also a great way to increase the amount of natural daylight in a garden room, and often come hand-in-hand with bi-folding doors.
It Must Match:
The first design rule is to ensure the garden room matches the style of the rest of the house. Don’t make it seem as if it’s in any way separate. You can enhance the feeling of flow and space by installing similar flooring throughout your downstairs living area, leading the eye through so the garden room or conservatory feels part of the rest of the house. If you don’t want the expense of new flooring, increase the sense of continuity between rooms using soft furnishings such as matching blinds or curtains.
Power coated aluminium bi-folding doors come in an extensive range of colours making it easy for homeowners to blend the door frames with their existing colour scheme. Alternatively, you can add a splash of colour by choosing bi-folds in vibrant colours such as Orient Red, Mint Green or bright pink.
If the preference is for timber frames, which most homeowners seek when creating a garden room, the aluminium can be coloured to give a timber effect, giving all the natural beauty of timber, but without the maintenance hassle.
Hang Mirrors In The Wall:
A very easy and clever tip is to hang big mirrors on either side of the walls, reflecting into each other, to magically make the room feel bigger and increase the feel of natural sunlight, which is so important when creating a garden room.
Keeping a garden room warm in winter and cool in summer is a priority for all year round use. Fitting high performance double glazed units with solar properties will provide a secure and thermally efficient ‘glasswall’ that will not impact on your energy bills. The industry standard for double glazing is 24mm and 28mm sealed units, both will help keep your home warm in winter and cool in summer.
Article by Neil Ginger of Origin Easifold Doors