This is a collaborative post.
As we’re finally moving into our new house next month I’ve been thinking a lot about how to make the best use of our space to meet all our individual needs. Currently we’re in a flat and although we are lucky enough to have two reception rooms so that we can have a desk set up in one and have the other as the living room full time it isn’t ideal, there is noise, the ‘office’ room has to be accessed to get to the kitchen and bedrooms and it’s also a playroom. Our new house has a separate dining room which we plan to use as a home office (the dining table will be in the kitchen) short term, but long term there are two options…
First is creating a garden room where the large shed is at the end of the garden. We’ve not seen inside the shed or inspected the condition but it looks like it’s pretty old so it would need replacing eventually anyway. A garden office would be an excellent solution for us to have a self contained home office that we can design to fit our needs, but keep our work environment separate from the house.
A purpose built, made to measure solution room that you could use for anything you like at all! A home gym, a studio for arts or music, a kids playroom, a teenagers den or bedroom, a self contained studio accommodation you could rent out via air b’n’b or even a room you could use for teaching yoga, drama, singing or more to clients. Unless you plan on sleeping in the garden room planning permission would not normally be required, so the only cost involved is the room itself.
For us this would be a great workaround for fitting in an office at home that doesn’t encroach on our living space. It would also make use of space in the garden that, let’s face it, in England we would only use properly for three or four months out of the year. We would of course have electricity and heating, and link up to our ring doorbell so we can talk to any visitors and let them know we’re on the way to open the door if necessary.
Another option for us would be to convert the loft into a home office, which would be cheaper than converting it into a new bedroom as we wouldn’t need planning permission for it to be a bedroom – but it wouldn’t add any value to the property as it would still effectively be a loft room just with a couple of Velux windows. We could save money by still accessing the room with the pull down loft ladder, but that’s not really ideal when you come and go from the kitchen with a cuppa, need to go to the loo or answer the front door!
Turning the attic into a bedroom with en-suite would reduce our storage capacity, but ultimately would mean that we could turn one of the bedrooms into a home office but would be far more expensive as you would require planning permission, architects and expensive building works. However it would mean that the office we work from is suddenly back in the heart of the house – not ideal for a good work life balance.
Before we can make any decisions we need to concentrate on getting in and unpacked first! What decision would you make?