So the inside of your home is now up to date. The place is a palace on the inside, but the exterior no longer does it justice. Now might be the time to consider that external renovation to add the finishing touch in creating your dream home.
- Purpose. What exactly do you want to achieve on the exterior? If the extension didn’t quite match the rest of the house and you prefer the look of the extension then this is a good place to start. Do you want to add some specific features i.e. a veranda or some decorative features.
- Planning Permission. For exterior renovations, planning permissions are rarely required but as always, it is definitely worth checking. Homes in conservation areas and listed buildings will need permissions so it is best to check with the local council and your Renovation Company before undergoing any work.
- Neighbours. Take a look around the neighbourhood. You will want your home to stand out and showcase the craftsmanship but you don’t want it to stick out like a sore thumb and ruin the neighbourhoods current aesthetic. Also, as always, consider the effect on your direct neighbours i.e. will it restrict light etc.
- Exterior Material. The route you take all depends on the desired effect. If your house is looking run down but you wish to keep the original look, then consider repointing. Professional builders enlisted to do the job will leave the house looking as good as new. If you want a brand new look then cladding is certainly the way to go. With modern looking brickwork cladding, your home will take on a whole new look. There is still the option of painting but this choice requires a lot of upkeep. You will need to repaint and touch up regularly so in most cases it is not worth the headache. If you do decide to paint then make sure you use fungicide and a stabilising basecoat before applying the paint.
- Windows and Doors. It is amazing the difference a new set of windows and doors can make. When it comes to windows, there are the modern looking PVC windows, which are cheap and efficient due to the double glazing though they do not last as long. Timber on the other hand is very long lasting, with maintenance, though this option is much more expensive. Front doors should be seriously considered because it is the entrance to your home. Think efficiency and safety when choosing and opt for the new PVC doors unless a more traditional wooden door is better suited. Remember by stylising with number plates, knockers and handles, great effects can be achieved with little cost.
- Porch. Add a little life to the front of the house; give the building that extra shape, by building a front porch. For bigger homes, this small addition to the front makes a huge difference. It gives the house a little more body and is your chance to present a welcoming area before anyone actually enters the home. If opting for a porch make sure it complements the building but doesn’t look like it was “stuck on”. If the house is smaller and a porch is too much, then consider a simple veranda, which gives that sense of extra body without overpowering the look.
- Garden and Decking. You want your garden to feel as welcoming as possible. With a small lawn that is easy to maintain, a subtle well-lit pathway and a driveway you will not draw focus away from the house but instead complement it. A few flowers wouldn’t go amiss either. As for decking, think proportionately. Too small and it’s useless, too large and it’s overpowering, finding a balance is key with the garden area.
Always remember, it can be very tempting to want to do everything and think in a dream like manner but do always be realistic in your ambitions. If you’re the type who finds themselves thinking “MORE POWER!” make sure you have somebody on hand to tell you “I don’t think so Tim!”
Good Luck with your Home Improvements!