Single-storey extension ideas

Building a single storey extension
Building a single storey extension

Single-storey extensions are perfect for those who want to add value and save money. They can be the perfect solution for opening up a kitchen, adding a study, or even adding a spare guest bedroom.

If you were considering adding the extension as a way to access the property then you should definitely think about having a composite front door

Many people prefer to opt for single-storey extensions as they are unlikely to require planning permission, which is ideal for a project with minimal fuss.

So, if you’re currently browsing through colour swatches and taking measurements, here are some ideas for your extension.

Open plan living space

Single Storey Extension

This style of living blurs the line between the indoors and the outdoors. Instead of having a set of narrow, uPVC patio doors made to measure, the panes of glass have the option of opening out fully to create a semi-indoor semi-outdoor space.

This is perfect for long summer evenings if you like spending the rest of the day in the comfort of an armchair but still enjoying the fresh air.

The cost of this is a bit pricier, but it could be well worth it if you have a large area to work with, and you live for entertaining others throughout the year.

Self-contained cottage

The possibilities of an extension are limitless if you have the space and budget. You could, in fact, expand your single-storey extension to create a self-contained residence.

Adding a kitchen, bedroom and living quarters could make you the ultimate host for any guests who want to stay over.

It’s also perfect if you love to host a party, as you’ll not only be able to put guests up, but also have an entirely separate entertaining area.

Garage conversion

Garage Conversion

If you have a particularly large garage you never use, then this has the potential for a conversion.

If you desperately need the space, and you already have a parking space you utilise instead, then adapting your garage into a single-storey extension could be an incredibly clever way of harnessing what you already have.

Many people use their old garage space as a kitchen-diner, as this opens up the possibility for a large dining space that opens out into the garden.

A separate garden room

Garden Rooms

Who said an extension had to be attached to your home? Garden rooms are a bit of an abstract use of space, as they add an extra room, but in the midst of your outdoor space.

These could be great for hosting spaces, or maybe even a guest room if you have room for a little self-contained living space.

Adding a kitchen area could liven up your summer party festivities, and if its less than 50% of the floor size of your original home, you won’t need planning permission.

A single-storey extension, if planned well, could completely avoid the need for planning permission at all.

They could add some much-needed space to your home, and give you some air-flow throughout the home.

Whether you convert a garage, build a separate building or add onto your current home is completely up to you, but you will love the additional space that comes with building an extension.

Front porch extension ideas

Enclosed Front Porch

As we live in the United Kingdom, it’s safe to assume that most people will want a covered porch.

Open and screened porches are gorgeous additions in hotter regions of the United States and other countries; however, with so much rain, sleet, and fog in our winters, an open porch would be seldom used outside of summer.

Here are a few ideas for a covered, front porch in the UK, with a number of size and style considerations.

Deck chairs

While beach-style deck chairs might be a little bit kitsch for some people’s tastes, deck chairs refer literally to the act of adding some reclining chairs to your porch.

If you are lucky enough to have a large porch, which can wrap around the front of your property, then you have some room to play with.

Adding large, double-glazed windows to watch out of provides the perfect view to look out over. Wrap-around porches with deck chairs, and maybe even a coffee table for good measure, are perfect for country homes.

Useful storage

If you have minimal space for your porch, you will need to be clever about how you use your storage. Here are a few options to consider:

  • A table with multiple drawers: vertical-stacked drawers provide you with somewhere to hide keys, umbrellas and other front-door essentials.
  • Vertical shoe-racks are an ingenious way of saving space. If you have kids who are prone to chucking their shoes to the side when they get in, then get them into the habit of chucking them into a vertical shoe cabinet instead.
  • Coat pegs: better to opt for pegs rather than a rack when it comes to storing your items.

Add a glass roof

If your reason for adding an extension in the first place is to add a feeling of spaciousness to your home, then there are ways of adding to this using glass.

Opening up the roof of your porch extension by using glass will flood it with light and make it feel even roomier.

A burst of colour

While your porch extension may carry out a very practical purpose, it’s good to ensure that you still maintain at least a little bit of fun and playfulness with how it looks.

An all-white extension could feel Scandinavian and chic, or it could just feel a little too clean and dull.

Adding a coloured wall or pops of vibrancy through your storage features could help it to feel uniquely yours in terms of style.

Double doors

UK Porch with Double Doors

If you want a grand entrance to your home, then double doors could be an intriguing option to think about.

You will need planning permission for anything larger than three square foot of floor space, but if this is something that doesn’t phase you, then two clear double doors could add a bit of a wow-factor to the front of your home.

When it comes to adding a porch extension, have a think about how it will practically function for your home.

You will want to ensure that it can also partially function as a means of storing everyday belongings, as well as being easy on the eye and providing a break from your front door and the outdoors.

Porch extension costs

Porch Extension
Porch Extension

Porch extensions are incredibly appealing for anyone who wants to make life a bit easier for themselves, and even add a bit of kerb appeal.

They’re particularly useful if you’re unlucky enough to live very close to a main road. They provide a bit of visual breathing space when leaving your home and getting ready for the day ahead.

If you’re weighing up the pros and cons of a porch extension, here are some considerations.

Costs

The most important first stage of your front porch planning will be figuring out the cost. You may have some very practical limitations when it comes to the size you can realistically achieve.

You may also be slightly constrained by budget. You should also figure out what you want to be able to fit in your porch. You ideally want to leave room for:

  • A table to put your keys and other knickknacks on
  • A chair or stool to make life comfortable when lacing up your shoes
  • Maybe even some room for shoes or a shoe rack

To fit in a few creature comforts, and enough room to grab your coats and bags, the estimated ideal size is a minimum of 1.2 meters up to 3 meters. The minimum size would cost you around £3,500, which equates to just over £1,000 per square metre.

This makes the assumption that you have it made with a concrete floor, a brick bade and double-glazed windows. Cutting down on these costs is never recommended.

Will I need to factor in planning permission?

uPVC Porch

Whether or not you will need planning permission depends entirely on the size of the porch and the nature of the building you are attaching it to. Here are some reasons you might want to factor in the price of planning permission:

  • Your home is a listed building: unfortunately, if your building is listed, then you will absolutely need planning permission from your local council. It’s hard to give an estimate for this, as this will almost certainly vary depending on where you live in the country.
  • Even if you aren’t lucky enough to live in an older, listed building, you may still need if the floor area is larger than three square metres.
  • If the porch is within two metres of a public path or boundary.
  • If the height goes above 3 metres.

These regulations may seem quite tough, but the more you add to the height and width of your porch, the more likely you are to start encroaching on public space, and maybe even view from your neighbours’ homes.

If you are worried about this, then just contact your local council for more information.

The nice aspect of saving up for a porch extension is that, by most extensions’ standards, they’re quite affordable.

They provide warmth and space when you’re getting ready to leave the home, and they may even boost the curb appeal of your home if you live close to a busy road.

Be sure, though, to contact your local council if you live close to a main road and plan to build near to it.

How much money can solar panels save?

solar panel investment calculator

There are two main reasons why many people decide to install solar panels into their home. The first is to reduce their carbon footprint, and the second is to make some financial savings.

Not having to constantly shell out for expensive gas and electricity bills is a notion that would appeal to many. Before making the investment in solar panels, it’s important to do some research.

Believe it or not, there are some factors that could affect just how much money you do save.

A reduction in energy bills

Energy bill efficiency chart

It’s hard to give an exact figure on how much your energy bills will go down by each month.

This could depend on how much sunshine you get on a daily basis and the surrounding conditions of your home.

However, if you are concerned about rising energy prices then solar panels can certainly help. They have been found to minimise electricity bills by around 50%.

Hinderances to saving money

Before you splash out on a brand new set of solar panels, do consider a few important features regarding the layout of your home.

  • If your home is surrounded by tall trees, or perhaps even high-rise buildings that cast a shadow, this could block the sun’s rays from hitting your solar panels.
  • If you have a tall chimney stack, this could cast a shadow over your solar panels during certain times of the day.

If any of these are a concern, don’t worry, not all hope is lost. It is, however, worth bearing in mind that to make the largest financial gain from your solar panels, you will need to pay to get these issues fixed.

Could I ever make a profit?

Solar Profit

The idea of making a profit is certainly appealing when it comes to getting solar panels installed. However, before you get too carried away, it’s important to take all costs into considerations.

If you were hoping to benefit from the Feed-In Tariffs scheme, you should know that this closed in April 2019.

It is also likely to cost you one or two thousand pounds to get them installed, and perhaps more if you have a particularly large home.

You may also need to factor in some changes, which may need to be implemented if do have to make your roof clear to access the sun’s rays. Your roof may also need to be strengthened.

So, can you make a profit, and will they save you money? The answer is yes, of course, they will save you money, and you could make a profit, albeit after about eight years, and perhaps more if your home is larger.

By installing solar panels under the new grid trade incentive you could be opening the doors to earn and save up to £38,000 which is a considerable amount.

It’s worth noting, too, that as energy bills increase so will your solar panel earnings.

Solar panels are a long-term investment. The savings, and potential profits, you will make will increase with time.

It’s therefore important to see it as a long game. You are investing in your home’s eco-friendliness, with the aim of earning the money back over time.