Information required to write a Design Brief for your Project:

The starting point of any project is your brief, a description of clear instructions, requirements and functions required for your building, for us to assist with the preparation of your design brief we will need to know:

  1. Your aims, aspirations, and dreams, what you would like to achieve and what you dream of the finished Project
  2. Your budget (this is important to gauge a size and style relevant to the budget as there is no point in designing something you physically can not afford).
  3. What are your reasons for embarking on a building project: what and why is is important?
  4. Your design type/style: Would you like to design your proposed project in keeping with the existing building? Or are you after a modern or a contemporary or high-tech design that sticks out from the crowd? Are you concerned about having Green design for example energy efficiency?
  5. Your overall expectations: what are you hoping to achieve with this project – bringing the outside in, making a modern open plan living space, more space, more light, variety of uses, greater flexibility and versatile living accommodation.

Expanding Spaces – Making a House a Home … Roof Tiled, Walls Insulated

Week Commencing 17th February 2020

The roof has been battened, finished with the membrane and now nicely tiled including the hip that our first builder had advised was not required even though it was on my planning approval, the feeling of getting a roof and walls with insulation installed is immense. It is definitely feeling like the end is in sight.

All the timber frame has been lined with OSB and then finished externally with fire-board to ensure for a minimum of 30mins fire protection. The guys came back to install the breather membrane and battens ready for the installation of the render.

All internal walls have started to be constructed to give a framework for the individual rooms.

All walls have had the insulation put in ready for plasterboarding.

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How will the pandemic effect you …

The current Covid19 pandemic has made the future pathways for those who were looking to extend or build a new home feel like a long way off than it perhaps felt like in January or even February.
However, the world may be in a position of uncertainty, but this doesn’t mean your project needs to be too.
There is no time like the present to be looking into the preparations of getting your ideas down on paper and getting approval which would then provide you with the stepping stone ready to start work when the lock down is eased further.
We may all be working from home, but maybe this has made you think about the importance of space within your property and how you could better utiliseit to work for you as a family making a house a home.
All Contractors are are open to price projects.
Councils planning departments are still open for business, the majority of these are also working from home.
We are committed to deliver our clients a quality and efficient architectural service.

We are able to assist our client in face to face meeting via software such as Zoom and Teams, to ensure all projects are managed efficiently and communication is of key priority during the pandemic when we are unable to actually have a face to face meeting with our clients and consultants, to ensure everyone stays safe.

So if your interested in progressing a project and would be interested in more ideas and inspiration please get in touch and we can arrange a meeting via an online meeting space for example Zoom, Facetime or Skype which ever suits you best.

Expanding Spaces – Making a House a Home – Paint, electrics, removal of walls, new openings, steels, roof tiled and walls OSB and fireboarded.

Week Commencing 10th February 2020

So to recap we now have the trusses and are ready for the roof to be battened and finished with the membrane ready for the tiles to be installed! The hip is being created and the feeling of positivity on site helps.

All the timber frame has to be lined with OSB and then finished on the wall closest to our neighbours with fire-board to ensure for a minimum of 30mins fire protection. This is to then be protected with a breather membrane and battens ready for the installation of the weatherboarding.

A section of Emilys bedroom wall has been removed to provide a large spacious landing! The new opening into the proposed first floor extension is ready to be accessed!

The lounge kitchen dining area has been painted white to give a completely fresh feeling to the area and allow the area to feel more spacious.

Side path has been slated along both sides and patio slabs laid to the walkway of the pathway.

All new steels box lintel type. We have been putting into position in the proposed extension above the windows the required lintel to get Building Regulation approval.

Trusses clips have been added.

Today we found out our original builder is back out conning other victims out of the hard earned money! So be vigilant he trades under several names!

Expanding Spaces – Making a House a Home – Paint, electrics, new partition walls, new openings & trusses

Week Commencing 2nd February

Continuation of painting … from plaster to white walls … this is a lengthy process first coat was watered down then second coat was slightly watered down and final coat was as it is from the tin! Nice freshen up!

New electrics added to the new bedrooms and shower room. Wiring for lighting and sockets.

New side pathway created to replace the rough concrete pathway to the side access. Ow a nice clear pathway with slabs to create the footway. With plum slate to both sides distinguishing the pathway.

New utility constructed first was to build the wall units and hang them up to provide essential storage required. The base units will be fitted once the required pipework is in place.

We took delivery of the trusses. Which to us is massive progress since our roof was incorrectly installed. The trusses have been installed and the hip cut into existing roof. Which is really starting to take shape. Although we are a little concerned as to the weather we are supposed to have gale force winds … lefts hope that the new trusses. Hold the test of time!

Expanding Spaces – Making a House a Home – Paint, garage floor, drainage, fencing, Plumbing & electrics

Week Commencing 27th January

finishing touches … internally

week commences with a taster to how it could look when finished prior to the white mist cost being applied.the white mist onto the new plaster walls before we can finalise the panting work to the ground floor.

Garage floor constructed using reinforced mesh and concrete poured to 150mm deep. The floor has been raised to the patio doors at the back of the garage.

New drainage to the garage area installed. Drainage channel installed to the front end of the garage.

New fence installed to the garden to create the boundary.

We got great news today the roof trusses should be delivered Wednesday ready for install at the weekend. We have also made arrangements for the installation of the weatherboarding and the roof tiles so fingers crossed in a couple of weeks we should be weathertight!

Painting has begun to make our space complete.

Expanding Spaces – Making a House a Home – Plastering, Kitchen Installation, Drainage Positioned & Existing Kitchen Removal

We spent along time looking for a builder to replace our other so called builder someone happy to pick on a project that hasn’t been constructed correctly to comply and put right the errors of construction. We have had a number of builders come out and provide there thoughts and costs to do this.

Week Commencing 20th January

This week started quite straightforward we hired a mini digger to dig the trenches for the new drainage to the kitchen.

The guys dug the hole to install the new drainage. On inspection Building control asked for the trench to be dug closer to the new foundations during this inspection they saw the depth of the already approved foundation these had been made shallower than when they were previously inspected. We were also informed by Building Control that they inspected the foundations at 1m and had requested that Jeff ground workers dig a further 0.25m to achieve a depth of 1.25m to ensure they were deeper than the existing foundations. This was obviously not carried out and this is obviously why photographic evidence was never received by Assent Building Control. So as a result we have now been asked to order new steels to create a goal post  framework to take the weight of the construction above to ensure that the weight does not go through the already concreted foundations.

A new 600×600 pad foundation at 1300mm deep dug to take the new proposed steel column. This was dug then filled and approved.

The drainage hole has now been back-filled.

We had two guys come to lay the caber first floor to make the site safe and ready for the trusses to be installed. Caber is a water resistant ply wood.

Also we had a floorer come into lay the levelling screed. We came up with a number of issues as the floor was made up of several heights so some had to be filled in to make it as level as possible. This took 4 hours to dry so was carried out on the Friday and then on the Saturday the flooring was laid, this was a long process as there was alot of cutting into be done to make it look good.

Expanding Spaces – Making a House a Home – Plastering, Kitchen Installation & Existing Kitchen Removal

Week commencing 13th January

The guy continued to install the kitchen having all the units in position he continues to cut the plinths and worktops to the correct length then adds the doors/drawers and edging strips and panels.

From Monday to Wednesday the plasterers finish off the extension this includes the walls beams and ceiling.

We finally made contact with our builder Jeff Pillenger regarding the outstanding work, we were pleasant and asked when we would like see him back to finish out the works started his words ‘i will not be back, i don’t care’. He came to remove his stuff. Leaving us to clear up the mess he left behind.

A second guy is working outside to ensure the site is tidy for the workers and has taken up the blocks ready to install the new drainage.

Also our existing kitchen has been stripped out to the bare walls both units, flooring and tiles have been removed.



Expanding Spaces – Making a House a Home – Kitchen Installation, Steels & Plastering of Existing House

Week Commencing 6th January – Preparation work for plastering. All remainder steels have been boxed in with 2 layers of Gyproc Fireboard this is to prevent the passage of fire. The Gyproc Fireboard is a Pink Board.

Two guys got the ceilings and walls plastered within the living room, dining room, kitchen and hall. This gives it a fresh new feel without too many imperfections.

The new kitchen installation took place on the 9th January and we have been advised that the work will take approx. 4 to 5 days to complete. The guy set out all the units first this took the first two days.

Expanding Spaces – Making a House a Home – Installation of Electrics – First Fix, Extension Slab and Screed Laid.

Day forty four – Day Fifty Eight – 23rd December – 3rd January (week 9 and 10)

W/c 23rd December

Ground floor electrics first fix completed all the wiring of new electrical sockets and lighting to extension. The installation of 9 No. points for spot lights, 6 No double sockets and 2 no single sockets outlets along with new light switching point.

W/c 30th December

Ground floor electrics first fix completed wiring of new electrical sockets and lighting to existing living and dining areas. This included 2 No pendant points one to the new kitchen area and the other to the new dining area. The installation of 10 No points for new spot lights to dining area and 5 No points for new spot light to new kitchen. New sockets to dining and kitchen area. Electrics put into place for the ovens, hob and bottle cooler to the island unit. All lights have been switched on and are working and can be positioned within the ceiling plasterboard once the ceiling has been plastered.

As we had not heard from Jeff we decided to continue the works ourselves as we needed to move back home and still our property was inhabitable. We had been left with massive holes in our walls directly to outside which isnt ideal. So i gathered people to assist us and started on the Ground Floor extension – floor concrete slab and screed laid by laying the 1200 gauge polythene membrane linked into wall DPC directly on top of the beam and block floor. Followed by 120mm Celotex GA4000 insulation, followed by DPM then 75mm cement screed. This brings it virtually to FFL of the existing house.

We then boxed in the steels 2 No internal steel beams boxed in with 2×1 timbers and clad with 2 No layers of Gyproc Fireboard 12.5mm. The plasterboard ceiling where removal of the existing wall is required to be made good ready for plastering on Monday.