Give serious thought into your requirements, how much cupboard space do you really need? If your budget is tight consider using cheaper flat pack carcasses and spend your money on the appliances and other fittings. Faux Corian worktops are now available to give a luxury look for half the price of a solid surface worktop. However if after planning you realise your budget will be stretched too much, consider just replacing the doors to give you a new kitchen look for very little spend.
Once you have established if planning permission is needed you should draw up some plans of your proposal. An architect or interior design firm can do this for you. These plans are essential before you start any work so the builder knows exactly what they are building. Your designer will be able to assist you with specifying every aspect of your build – you will be amazed at just how many decisions you need to make. Many people also use the designer to project manage the building, and for a successful build I would highly recommend this!
When you are ready for the final top coat make sure you use exterior paint - this paint is designed for longevity in all weathers and should always be used for exterior woodwork. Also remember that you should regularly maintain the gutting of your home. At roof level the gutters often become full of debris and grass can start to grow. If this is not removed any rainwater will fall down the exterior of your home and could lead to damp problems.
Sash Windows are lovely but they do let in a lot of air around the edges (approx. 6 sq cms on a badly fitting one). In addition the majority are single glazed. These two issues are very easy to fix at little cost to yourself and is a DIY job over a weekend. The gaps themselves can be fixed by the installation of brush strips. If you look at your window you will see that there is a strip of wood running around the edge of the inner window (the one facing the house) this is the retaining bead, and between the windows is the parting bead. These need to be removed and replaced with ones with brush strips. Search the web for “Sash window repair kits” and you will find what you need. The glazing can be removed carefully and replaced with “slimline” double glazing panels with no damage to the window itself , thus retaining its beauty. Don’t forget if you change the glazing you will need to change the weights, again the sash window repair kit will help.
Casement style windows can either be replaced in their entirety with sealed double glazing units, (please use wood frames and not plastic as it ALWAYS looks better, regardless of what the salesman tells you.) or refurbished. Search the web for a trade joinery company and ask them to make some up for you, much cheaper than a double glazing company. Alternatively you can seal the gaps in your windows by removing the hinged part and with a sharp plane and chisel reshape the window (if wood) to fit properly again and install a seal. Again you can replace single pane glass with glazed panels over a weekend yourself.
Unless the available room is very large it is often best to install only a shower in this room, especially if the main bathroom already has a bath. You will then need to choose a basin and a WC, and allow for adequate storage. Providing adequate storage is essential if you are hoping to create a new calm bathroom. Wall hung furniture is also a good option if the new bathroom will be small as the room visually appears larger. Choosing simple tiles to complete the look wile ensure that the new room doesn’t look crowded and adds a very valuable room to your home.
If your plans are simple you can easily take inspiration from other gardens and design it yourself. Plan and build your hard landscaping first and then supplement with the plants. Remember to consider the aspect and the soil type of your garden when choosing plants to ensure they flourish – and once you are done remember to water them!
If you decide to relay a floor, try to avoid the cheaper end of the flooring market, paying a bit more for your floor will make such a difference to the end result, cheap laminate floors always look like cheap laminate floors regardless of how well laid. If relaying the floor, search the web for DIY tips on how to do this as the tricks of the trade make this job so much easier. Try to buy flooring that interclicks as this will facilitate easy laying. If your flooring is just tongue and groove, hire a floor nailer for the duration as this will ensure the floor is nailed down properly and will not move.
Resurfacing a floor is an easy task and can be done by any DIY’r. First sand the floor using a hired sand machine, starting with rough grade and then moving up to very fine grade gradually will the floor is totally smooth. Hoover the floor to get all the dust off, then in accordance with the manufacturers instructions apply a sealant using a roller designed for applying floor sealant. The results will amaze you.
Once the potential has been proved you can think about what you want to use the space for – a kids playroom/den or maybe a new master bedroom suite? Both of these options would require a proper staircase so can this be achieved? If you just want additional storage you may be able to do a basic conversion to provide extra space? Plan every aspect before you start and your loft conversion should be a painless process.
Adding a feature wall is one easy way to add colour, especially if you are not feeling brave enough to go full on with colour. It also allows you to easily the redo the wall if you want to change the colour. Your chosen colour scheme will depend on your style – you could add colour in a wild and wacky random way, or maybe your style is more towards a neutral base with splashes of bold dominant colours around your home. If your budget is tight you could just add colour through the accessories. The high street now carries a great range of soft furnishings – and the low prices also mean they can easily be changed when you tire of this year’s colours and want to update the look.