'The added value paid for our fees several times over'.
We were invited to look at the existing Conservatory which was packed with furniture and was slowly rotting away. Our client wanted to have a larger kitchen/ dining/living area, to provide a garden room extension to the main living area, a utility room accessed directly from the side alley, and to provide a ground floor WC and shower room accessed off the hallway. We were told that issues of sustainability and energy efficiency were also to be addressed in the design and choice of materials.
The structural choice was easy enough. The house has sufficient thermal mass to even out the daily range of temperatures and to benefit from the solar energy gained through the new folding sliding doors and roof lights, so a thermally lightweight super insulated timber construction was fine. Our client preferred a lime render rather than timber boards so this was applied externally, bordered by Western Red Cedar frames. The roof lights provided additional day lighting over the Kitchen work surfaces and at the new opening between the Dining and Sitting areas.
The client really loved it, but he also loved his new Thai wife, so he sold the house and emigrated. The house next door had a very conventional extension and interestingly it went up for sale at the same time. 'Our' house sold within weeks for £30,000 more than next door, which took months to sell. The added value paid for our fees several times over!