Got a garden? Then you have all you need to benefit from the latest architectural trend to hit the nation: garden buildings. We’re not talking about a lean to or a shed either. No, this is all about fully functioning, highly designed eco-friendly spaces with specific uses – be they total eco homes; or office spaces away from the house.
The beauty of a garden building is simple: you build it from scratch so it can be designed any way you want and specified to any standard you want too. It will automatically comply with building regulations and will serve the precise purpose for which it was built.
Two of the most common current uses for garden buildings are as office space, or as complete eco homes. In the latter case, of course, you need to have a pretty big garden – and you’ll need planning permission too. But if you have the space and the money, it can be more cost effective in the long run to design and build an eco-home from scratch, than it is to refit an existing old farmhouse (for example) so its energy performance and overall greenness comes up to the mark.
For a less drastic use of garden buildings, let’s have a look at the idea of the garden office. For the home worker this can be an absolute boon.
Working at home is freeing in many ways – but it does mean you sleep and eat where you work – a practice that can make it difficult to turn your brain off at the end of the day. So building an office at the end of the garden, fully plumbed and working electrically, can be the perfect way to set aside your headspace for daytime and relaxation time. You can design your garden office to be the perfect workspace for the way you work, too, which means there does no more have to fit your workspace in around the idiosyncrasies of the design of your house.
Garden buildings of this smaller sort may not require planning permission. As a general rule, planning regulations allow a garden building of less than 30 square metres in floor plan to be built without application. However, as different areas have different addenda attached to their planning codes, it is always wise to check before you begin. In many cases, the company that makes your garden building will also have planning professionals on the team, who are able to get all the permission you need before they start.
One of the biggest selling points of all with properly designed garden buildings is this – they can be designed to be moved when you do. So if you have built the perfect art studio or writing space (or of course simply the ideal retreat), and then you decide to move – not a problem. By talking to your design team at the start of the project you can make sure that your garden buildings are made in a way that makes them portable when the time comes.
By talking to your design team at the start of the project you can make sure that your garden buildings are made in a way that makes them portable when the time comes.