Summer is approaching and now is the perfect time to finally add that new addition to your property. Conservatories are the ideal room to bring the outdoors in and create an ambient environment, without ever having to worry about the elements.
One of the biggest barriers when it comes to home improvements is the problem of costs not matching budget. It can be agonizing to fall in love with a new project or idea, only to discover you don’t have the funds to complete it. Self-build conservatories are an excellent way to get around this issue, but there are numerous ways you can cut costs when creating your new extension.
Read on for our comprehensive guide on hints, tips and tricks on how to save money while still building your dream conservatory this summer.
The largest cost for any home improvement is labour. There certainly are some tasks that should be left to the professionals but constructing your own conservatory is a venture even a novice can take on.
If you haven’t heard of these before, the simplest way to describe these is as a ‘flat-pack conservatory’. You choose your design online, enter specifications such as shape and size and everything is shipped directly to your doorstep.
Don’t be discouraged by this seemingly daunting task, these kits are created to suit DIY-ers and not professionals. Full instructions are provided and most manufacturers provide a customer service line so if you do have any issues, the experts are always at hand to provide advice.
Now you’ve eliminated labour costs, but what if your budget still won’t stretch quite far enough? It’s time to rethink your style choices.
You may not realise it, but changing certain elements of your DIY conservatory can save you a fortune. Opting for a full glass construction instead of a small bricked wall is a great start. The type of glass or PVC can really vary in cost as well.
Be conscious though, if you live somewhere with particularly cold winters, you may save on the initial cost of glass by choosing a basic material but if there is no thermal efficiency to it, you could end up spending more on your heating bill.
There are some aspects of building a conservatory that should be left to the professionals, especially if you have no previous experience. The most crucial task in all this would be installing electrical points and lights.
Attempting to do this yourself just to save cash can pose a health and safety risk to your family and your property, so we always advise calling someone in.
Naturally, this will cost you and we wouldn’t recommend skipping a certified electrician for a cheaper option. However, there are ways you can save costs. Take time to really analyse your conservatory and work out where any electrical points will need to be and how many you need.
Need, not want, it is the main point here. Plan your layout and gauge where electronics will fit. You may be looking at wall mounted lights, but are these really necessary? In a room made of glass, you won’t need much light and running cables through walls will add extra costs.
Why not go for a floor or table lamp instead? These can be plugged into outlets instead and reduce installation costs. Better yet, get some solar or battery-powered lights.
We can quickly get ahead of ourselves with the thought of a new project but it’s important to take time and figure out exactly what function you want from your conservatory.
These rooms are exceedingly versatile and can be used for any purpose. Knowing what this purpose is beforehand can help you budget the entire project.
Especially if you are choosing a room that will require larger furniture, such as a dining room table and chairs, you need to know exactly what size room you need and the costs of these pieces.
You don’t want to finish your conservatory, only to find your vision won’t fit and you may end up paying the price by having to fork out for custom-built items to fit your needs.
By knowing your vision early on, you can keep an eye out for sale bargains, garage sale buys and even freebies from family and friends who are remodelling.
Upcycling is a fabulous trend, not only do you create your own custom pieces, but it also reduces waste and helps our planet, it’s win-win.
Keep an eye out for old furniture that is destined for scrap and use your imagination. Even better, take a look at any tired and outdated furniture in your own home and give it a new lease of life in your new conservatory.
An old stool can become a coffee table, an outdated sideboard can be transformed into a bar for entertaining. All you need is a lick of new paint in your own personal style.
Your DIY conservatory is likely to be delivered on pallets, instead of throwing these in the skip, turn them into something new.
Coffee tables, benches, shelves and flower boxes, pallet furniture is on-trend, free to make and incredibly easy.
Fix Things First
Although we all know we should, we don’t always put money aside each month for home repairs. Although your conservatory kit will come with a warranty, this can easily be voided if your current property’s structure is compromised.
The exterior wall of your home, the one your new extension will sit against, needs to be safe and free from cracks or any other problems.
Ignoring these are not only going to cause problems to your home later on, but your conservatory can suffer as soon as the weather turns.
Leaking seals can be caused by poor brickwork and you wouldn’t want any damage to occur because you ignored these initially.
No matter what your budget, you can find a way to create your dream conservatory, you just need a little imagination and some extra elbow grease. The feeling of accomplishing such a task yourself is also worth more than any cash you saved in the process.