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Gardens

Category Archives

Getting the best views from you Granny Annexe. How to make the most of your garden and location.

One consistent feature of the properties we build is the care and attention our customers put into their gardens. One of the great things about an annexe is that they can truly take advantage of their surroundings being almost always built within the grounds or garden of an existing property. Our annexes are always built with this in mind and feature large bi-folding doors or french doors in order to provide a great view of the garden and to let in as much light as possible.

 

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Many of our customers are keen gardeners and this is reflected in the requests we get when creating their new building’s design. Some of the best ways to make the most of a garden location is obviously to create as many ways as possible to enjoy it, be that from inside through large windows, or from outside on a large decked area or patio.

 

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With this fantastic weather we have been having recently, many of our thoughts turn to how to enjoy the garden more. Our buildings are a perfect place to host a bbq or garden party. All our granny annexes come complete with a bespoke kitchen, meaning that its super easy put on a great family bbq for friends and family. We are able to offer our customers the optional extra of having us landscape your garden, build a terraced area or patio, or even to create an outdoor cooking area.

After a free site survey, we will be in the perfect position to advise you and go through all the options you have available to create the perfect outdoor space that connects your garden to your new home.

 

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Tips for your garden :

In this hot weather, it can be difficult to keep everything in great condition. One of the challenges we face is keeping our garden and lawn watered when we are experiencing a heat wave like we are currently. We can make sure that environmental considerations such as a water butt are installed so that all rainwater is collected from your annexe. This water can then be re-used on your lawn and garden when the weather is hot. Another great way to save water is to re-use water you have used for washing up, instead of throwing this water away, consider using it in the garden instead. With our buildings being so closely incorporated into the garden it is easy to get into an environmental mindset and to start putting some of these ideas into use.

 

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If you are less mobile or not as green-thumbed as you would like, then there are plenty of other options available to create some greenery and enjoy your garden. Creating some colourful potted flower displays is a great way to add colour and to give you some great views. Potted plants are much easier to look after than a garden, and might only require watering once a day in the summer. Also, you do not have to worry about maintaining a lawn, in the example above a great little terrace area gives a view of the garden and allows easy access between the two.

 

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We are well known for building a great range of annexes for our customers, many of our more traditional designs are very popular, but we are also very happy to design and build more modern and contemporary buildings. Sometimes a modern design can work better in the surroundings, depending on your location and garden. Here a flat-roofed design, dark grey folding doors and cedar cladding create a minimal and exciting combination with the garden. The terraced area has been created with contrasting silver larch, that really helps to settle the building into its surroundings, and of course to provide a wonderful area from which to enjoy the garden.

 

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How to increase your living space by constructing a garden annexe

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Living space in our homes is currently at breaking point. Many families would like to move up the property ladder and buy a larger home, but with the cost of housing soaring, that is not always a possibility. Sometimes circumstances mean that a family needs to find extra space, whether they can afford to or not.

A knock on effect of current house prices is that the younger generation might not be able to afford a deposit and get their foot on the first rung of the property ladder, or elderly parents might not have enough equity in their own property to afford to downsize.

That is when building an annexe in the garden might be an affordable solution to help with the increase in demand for family living space. Whether for the older or the younger generation, a garden building can provide an ideal mix of proximity to the main family home, combined with an element of independence that helps to make multigenerational living a success.

 

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What is an Annexe?

By definition, it is a separate building designed for living in that is associated with the main building. It, therefore, offers an element of independent living, while retaining a close link to the family home. This creates the perfect elements for multi-generational living, where a combination of independence and security are sought after.

Is planning permission required?

You generally need planning permission for any habitable building, whereas for a summerhouse, garden office or gym it might not be necessary. Simply put, if it is going to be slept in it will probably require planning permission. Before choosing your design it is wise to consider the local environment, whether or not you live in a conservation area and if your building is listed. These factors might affect the style of annexe you are allowed to build. All of these factors are worth considering and something that we would be very happy to assist you with and discuss in more detail.

Case study

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We recently constructed this fabulous building in Basildon. with an external area of 8m x 5m and a pitched roof, it is one of our larger annexes, in the Arran range.

Bright, airy and spacious

A common request we receive when designing a new building for our customers is that they would like to create a light and airy space to live in. Our annexes always fit this bill. With the use of a pitched roof, Velux skylights bring in light from above and help to further enhance the feeling of space. Bi-folding or French doors are also a popular choice meaning that light floods into the main living area. In summer the doors can be thrown open so that the garden is enjoyed to it’s fullest. A variety of window styles are possible, with a choice of frames in different colours in order to create your perfect look.

Cottage appeal

Our cottage style ‘Islay’  is our most popular design. Often our customers are looking for a traditional finish to their home with white render and brick quoins. This design looks at home in an English country garden and sets our buildings apart from some of the other products on the market. We also offer more contemporary and modern options, such as cedar cladding, or white render with dark grey door and window frames. We are always happy to discuss your design and find the perfect look to meet your requirements. Other features that can add to the look and usability of your building include a decked terraced area. This is a great way to connect the building with the garden and allow you to enjoy the garden and annexe even more.

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Fittings and fixtures

We will build and decorate your home so that it is ready to move into once we hand you the keys. Our team of professional tradesmen will fit your kitchen, install the bathroom and install all the electrics. We will discuss with you where you want each fitting so that it is perfect for when you move in. The prices of our annexes are all-inclusive, including, foundations, drainage, all kitchen fittings, a walk in shower or bath, bathroom fittings, electrical points, wiring and plumbing.

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Warm and cosy

Your comfort is our priority. That is why we use the best thermally insulating building methods to create a warm, weather tight and insulated building that is affordable to heat in the winter. In order to do this, we use Structurally Insulated Panels (SIPs) for the construction of your building. Our SIPs have a great insulation rating, falling well within UK Government limits. Our U-values are within the upper limits, contributing to the energy efficiency of the building. This also means that our buildings are quick to construct allowing for a build time of 5-7 weeks.

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Turnkey service

When we build a project for our customers we take care of everything, from design to building and decorating, installing the kitchen and bathroom and handing you the keys, we have it covered. Of course, your input is very important to us and we always consult you throughout the process, but you can relax in the certainty that everything is being managed for you. Our team of professional craftsmen take great pride in the high standards of finish we guarantee for our customers, with beautifully laid laminate or engineered wooden floors, plastered and painted walls, electrical fittings and skirtings, our service is always completed to the best industry standards.

Granny annexe Flat Roof Interior

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First the granny annexe, then the graddy annexe!

Many people in their retirement see building a granny annexe as a great way to release equity and to move somewhere more manageable, without the soaring costs of moving home and downsizing into a flat or bungalow.

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These buildings can be a great way to create extra space, making use of a patch of garden and turning it into somewhere fantastic to live.

But increasingly it is not just the older generation who are turning to annexe living as a solution to their housing needs. According to the NUS over half of all students who paid full tuition fees in 2015 are back living with their parents.

The number of houses with a separate dwelling has jumped by a third since 2015. This increase can be put down to the various benefits they can bring to a property and the increase in value from increasing a property’s living space.

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The benefits that older generations enjoy from annexe living are equally advantageous to boomerang children returning from university. The attraction of living close to home with the possibility to save money for a mortgage has lead to the granny annexe morphing into the so-called ‘graddy annexe’. There has been a reported 20% growth in people inquiring about these sorts of buildings for the younger generation and this number is set to rise as younger people find it more difficult to afford a deposit.

In 2018 a typical 1 bedroom flat in London can be as much as £500,000, a staggering amount that most recent graduates would not be able to afford for many years, especially if already lumbered with student loans. A one bedroom garden building can be built from £50,162 including bathroom, open plan living room and kitchen/dinner. Once graduates finally leave the comforts of home the garden building is often recommissioned as a guest room, garden office, music studio, or an annexe for the older generation.

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Due to a huge growth in property prices in the south of England, many ‘graddy annexes’ are being built in southern areas such as London, Surrey and the home counties. Building these type of properties can be seen as an investment from both parties involved, allowing the younger generation to save for a deposit while allowing the property owner to add extra value to their home. These buildings also allow for a level of independence that is welcome for both parties, they have their own access to the property and do not get under each other’s feet, but it’s still pleasant to be close for family occasions.

When deciding to build an annexe in the garden it is important to think how the building will be used in the future. When designing a home for a younger family member it is wise to consider how the property will be used after they have left, and who might be the next inhabitants.

A garden home is a great way to keep families together and offers an excellent solution to the increasingly tricky housing market, be it for the older generation downsizing or the younger generation saving for a deposit.

At GrannyAnnexe.com we are always happy to discuss whatever ideas you have for your new project, just drop us a call free on 0800 334 5774 and we can talk you through the options available.

While it is still fresh in your mind, book a no obligation site survey.

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Why a Granny Annexe could be a great option for you and your family.

A brand new home in your garden could open space that was before barely used. For the fraction of the price of a similar sized flat, you could have a spacious one or two bedroom annexe, built and decorated within 5-7 weeks.

Choosing your new granny annexe design is an exciting process and one that comes with many possibilities.

When thinking about building a property in the garden, it is important to sit down with your family and discuss what are your main criteria. How much space will you need? How large is your garden? How will your new building work in its surroundings?

We offer a range of solutions to meet our customer’s needs. Each new annexe we build is unique and designed to complement perfectly our customer’s requirements and the surrounding area it is built.

One of our most popular designs ‘Islay‘ offers great scope for building a home that suits the needs of our clientele.

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The Islay can be traditional in appearance with brick built cornerstones and clean rendered walls, this is a look that has proven very popular as it meets the criteria of many of our customers. It suits the surroundings of most gardens and can be designed to match the look of the main house. The Islay offers plenty of room, with a separate bedroom, bathroom and kitchen dinner/living room. The cost of the Islay starts from £72,475.08 including VAT.

 

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For some of our customers building a garden home is a chance to design something more modern, new trends mean that options such as red cedar cladding are increasingly popular. Cladding performs well in all weather and will provide great protection for your building. It also creates a more modern look, especially when paired with darker grey window frames and doors.

 

Granny Annexe Cambridge

This building pictured above we built for our customer also makes the most of its surroundings through the use of its extra wide windows and bi-folding doors. A beautiful garden can be appreciated from inside this property all year round. It’s amazing the difference that large windows can make to the sense of light and space, adding to the more modern design.

 

How much does a granny annexe cost?

With house prices now 7.6 times higher than the average annual salary (double the amount compared with 20 years ago) multigenerational living is becoming hugely popular. It offers an alternative to downsizing, that is both less risky in the current economic climate and will certainly increase the value of any home. Our buildings are thought to add more value to the property than the cost of building the annexe, with many people searching for houses with additional living space.

Our garden homes start from as little as £55,162.85, built & decorated with kitchen, bathroom & lounge-diner. The average cost of just moving house in 2017 was £8451.49 add to this the average UK property price of £218,225, then it is apparent the massive savings that can be made.

Many of our most impressive annexes have been custom builds that were designed to meet unique requirements, we love to hear your ideas and turn them into reality.

Customising the look of your new home might also be needed to meet planning regulations, some conservation areas will require a certain type of window, cladding, tile or finish to be used, which is something to consider carefully in the design process.

Care home costs vs a granny annexe

Another consideration for some families is the cost of care homes compared to the option of building a garden home. Care home costs are extremely high in England. With current laws, the cutoff point for when people are responsible for paying for their care home charges is £23,250. If your income or capital is above this figure then it could be likely that you will pay for your care home costs. Weekly cost of care homes can vary and currently range from £250 per week to well over £1000. A 20% premium can be added when nursing care is needed.

The location will also have an effect, with care homes in the South East of England costing typically more. For a more in-depth analysis of care home costs try visiting a specialist website such as ukcareguide.co.uk.

When nursing care is less of a consideration then many people prefer the option of keeping the family closer together. A granny annexe can provide a great solution to soaring care home costs. Families like the idea that a level of independence is maintained, while still offering assistance closeby if necessary. Also, grandparents get to share in family life, often providing some level of childcare for grandchildren, often creating a win-win situation for many families.

Why choose GrannyAnnexe.com ?

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Unlike many garden home builders, we have years of experience behind us. Our objective is to provide a perfect solution for your family and we are willing to go the extra mile to do so. We offer a free (postcode specific) no-obligation site survey at your home. During this process, we can talk to you about your requirements in detail and assess how suitable your garden will be for different designs. We also provide a full planning service to deal with any planning permission or building regulation questions.

While it is still fresh in your mind, book a no obligation site survey.

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5 great ways to make the most of your garden and annexe in spring.

When we build a property in one of our customer’s gardens we are always aware of how important it is that the two work perfectly together. A granny annexe is more than just a building, it becomes an integral part of the garden and therefore they are designed to work in perfect union. Upon doing a site survey one of the first things we do is to look at the environment in which the building will sit and then plan a design that will complement its surroundings.

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Now the weather is starting to hot up let’s look at some of the great ways you can enjoy the garden and your new building!

  • 1. Bring the garden inside.

Now with modern glazing and window options, it is easier than ever to bring a sense of light and outdoor space into your home. With double and triple glazed options, doors and windows can be very large, with bi-folding and French doors ever popular. What could be better on a warm spring day than throwing open the doors and enjoying the garden?

bi-folding doors in garden annexe

  • 2. Furniture that can be used to transform your outdoor space.

Outdoor furniture comes in all shapes and sizes, from loungers to hammocks to swinging chairs, there are plenty of options to make your garden a comfy and relaxing space to be. Garden furniture can be designed to fit in with your garden home design, perhaps matching the cladding or other design features.

A hammock can be a great way to add a fun and useful lounging option for when all you want to do is lie back and relax with a cool drink. Hammocks are increasingly becoming a popular option and can be utilized indoors when the weather is bad.

Hammock hung in granny annexe

  • 3. Outdoor / indoor cooking.

Cooking outdoors on a bbq is always a great way to make the most out of a hot day and modern BBQs don’t have to be a messy experience, these days gas BBQs offer a cleaner and safer alternative to BBQing on charcoal. Having a garden annexe with great connection to the outdoors and a terrace, decking or patio area can help you make the most of cooking outside. Another option if you want a taste of the Mediterranean is building or buying an outdoor pizza oven. Delight your family with home cooked pizza and your annexe will be the hub of every social occasion.

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  • 4. Lawn or landscape?

A lawn can be a real treat when the weather is hotter, but sometimes it can be a lot of hard work to keep a lawn looking good and mowed regularly. Other options are available, gardens can still look great with stone slabs, meandering paths, great use of foliage and pot plants and tasteful garden ornaments. If a lawn is a must for you but you don’t want the task of maintaining it, why not try an artificial lawn. They have come a long way from the bright green eyesores of old, and now are hard to distinguish from the real thing.

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  • 5. Clever planting

Planting can have a great effect on your garden. Clever planting can connect an indoor space to the outdoors through drawing the eye into the garden. Be careful if you have a small garden not to plant something that dominates the area, smaller pot plants can be arranged to create interesting zones while some pot plants can be positioned nearer the annexe bringing greenery into your indoor space and connecting the two.

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While it is still fresh in your mind, book a no obligation site survey.

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