Adding a conservatory or orangery is far less expensive and less hassle than building an extension

With the UK economy flat lining, and all the official prospects for growth extremely conservative for the next few years, no wonder so many home owners are opting the less expensive option of improving their properties rather than moving. However, for some folk desperately desiring additional high quality living space, the disruption of adding an extension can be almost as traumatic as moving house.

The most popular ways of adding valuable extra living space are conservatories, orangeries, loft conversions and extensions. The downside of a full blown extension is that they always require Building Regulation Approval, and the amount of red tape involved (along with the professional fees) can be rather off putting, especially as the vast majority of UK extensions also will first require planning permission. Consequently, the amount of time involved between when you first apply for planning and actually being able to start work on site with all the correct paperwork and legal permissions in place can be three to six months or in some cases even longer.

Whilst a brick built, tiled roof extension is obviously a more permanent structure than an orangery or conservatory, it does not offer anything like as much light or outside views. Other negatives, yet necessities, of having an extension is the amount of time they take to build, the red tape involved, and of course greater cost. All home improvement costs in effect rose overnight when the new Building Regulations came into effect on 1st October 2010, requiring higher levels of insulation etc.

Building a bespoke conservatory or orangery is far quicker than a full blown extension
Building a bespoke conservatory or orangery is far quicker than a full blown extension
As a general rule, adding an aluminium, wooden or UPVC double glazed conservatory or orangery usually requires far less red tape, less financial outlay and less time on site to build. However, this is of course dependent of the size required, the local ground conditions, planning rules, if any permitted development rights are still intact and if they are sufficient etc.

With no real signs of there being a real meaningful economic recovery for several years, home owners who have decided not to move have an ideal opportunity to add additional living room and value to their homes, rather than move due to the huge costs involved.

Installing a conservatory or an orangery onto a home is the simplest way to add extra ground floor living space to a home. Conservatories and orangeries also provide a light filled environment with better access to the garden, patios and outdoor areas.

A well thought through professionally built orangery, extension, loft conversion or conservatory, will add to the sale price of any home, making it a more attractive proposition for any future buyer.

Choosing manufacturers, suppliers or fitters to build a double glazed conservatory or orangery needs careful thought, research and planning first. It is wise to only instruct qualified double glazing fitters who have a proven track record in installing high quality value for money double glazed conservatories or orangeries to the standard of workmanship you will expect. This includes finding out if they are endorsed by trade bodies, members of FENSA and that the work they undertake will meet all the new Building Regulations. It is also worthwhile trying to get hold of any past and recent customer testimonials, to ensure that the standard of their craftsmanship has been maintained.

Try and avoid going with a firm who is unable to offer a range of products, as they are likely to “sell” you theirs, rather than be honest about what the UK marketplace has to offer. Find an independent double glazing supplier and installer whose product range is comprehensive enough to offer you a wide choice of designs, energy efficient materials and finishes that will suit your property. A badly constructed or designed or poorly fitting conservatory, orangery or porch will have a detrimental effect on both the look and value of your home, so ensure you do go through all the options with your chosen installer before committing to any final design or specification.

As with any major decision about your property, buying a bespoke conservatory or orangery is a substantial financial commitment and investment, so making the right choices is vital to ensure you not only create additional living space you can use all year round whatever the weather, but also do add value to your home.


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