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Garden Office Guide: Room 4-you

The-New-Garden-Office-Guide

We ask Room 4-you questions about buying their garden offices:

What is your most popular garden office design?

The Vista and The Arc have proven very popular whilst the bespoke option is often chosen for those wanting to create something a bit different.

Why does your design make the perfect garden office, how have you made it user friendly?

A Garden Office from Room4-you offers all the comforts of a new build home including double glazing, fantastic thermal insulation to keep the building warm in winter and cool in summer and traditional plaster walls. Energy efficient fixtures and thermally efficient components (better than 90% of UK houses) ensure you will keep running costs down whilst also reducing your carbon footprint. All windows and doors have insurance approved locks and secured by design hardware ensuring your Garden building and all its contents are as safe as possible.

How do your garden offices comply with Planning Permission?

Generally speaking our offices are designed to allow use of permitted development rights with a maximum overall height of 2.5-3m for a mono pitch roof or 4m for a double pitch roof. In the event that planning permission is needed we can take care of this on behalf of our customers.

What size garden office do you recommend for one worker to work comfortably?

This depends on the activity that is involved. For example a dental technician who recently installed one of our offices needed space for lots of equipment at different work stations. We would also suggest that consideration be given to after hours use and if the office can offer space for a bed settee this offers flexibility and provides better value for money. The smallest we offer as a standard configuration is 3.8×3.1m providing approximately 9m2 internal space.

And for two workers what size garden office do you suggest?

Once again this depends on what will be happening in the office and whether space is needed for visitors or guests. Being on top of each other whilst trying to hold a phone conversation can be very frustrating and we would recommend building to the largest dimensions possible within the constraints of budget and space. The larger the building the better value for money is provided. This is due in part to the fixed costs like connection to services which will not alter regardless of size.

Are the foundations included in the price, if so what type?

Room4-you have developed a unique foundation system which is included in the standard price of our buildings. Our foundation system offers substantial benefits over other systems thanks to the speed of installation and solid footings which have been tested to building regulation standards. We also offer other systems if the ground conditions dictate this.

Are your garden offices suitable for year round use? What type of insulation do you use? How thick are your walls?

Our garden offices are designed and constructed to last a lifetime and be used every day, regardless of weather. We generally use a sustainable timber frame structure with solid insulation providing the best balance of durability, sustainability and value for money. Our wall thickness is up to 235mm which includes the insulation and a vented cavity behind the cladding.

What is the exterior cladding on your garden offices?

We use either 20mm thick Western Red Cedar or Thermowood depending on our customers choice. We have also used Scottish Larch but found it brittle and more prone to wastage which negated the initial cost benefit.
Western Red Cedar offers a natural product with resistance to rot and fungal attack for up to 60 years whilst Thermowood provides similar protection for over 40 years. Neither of these require any maintenance.

What is the roof covering?

We use a single ply EPDM rubber membrane with a 25 year manufacturers warranty.

What is the interior lining and floor covering?

We use traditional plasterboard which offers warmth and comfort with the feel and look of a quality home or office building. Plaster allows for owners to change the interior decoration as often as they wish whilst offering the flexibility to move fixtures and fittings without leaving unsightly marks or damaging the walls.

We use Uni-clic laminate which offers hard wearing properties and will keep it’s high quality finish for many years after installation.

How many electrical sockets do you include as standard?

We include 6 double sockets as standard with the option of adding as many as you like – we recently completed a project with 30 double sockets!

What sort of lighting do you use in your offices, why have you chosen this type?

Externally we use LED downlighters whilst internally we offer either LED wall lights or flush fitting ceiling lights with energy efficient bulbs. We have recently moved away from internal downlighters as the manufacturers have issued a warning that vented roof spaces can cause the warm air vented through the light fitting to condense and cause moisture build up or dampness.

Do you include heating in your garden office as standard, if so what type?

We offer 1 or 2 radiant convector heaters as standard dependent on the size of office. Upgrades include air source heat pumps or under-floor heating.

Broadband and telephone are important in a garden office, how do buyers get these to the office?

We can fit CAT 5 or CAT 6 cables at the same time as laying the armoured electrical cable. We have also enabled Broadband services with a Homeplug network kit offering Broadband access through electrical wiring.

What optional extras would you recommend to create the perfect office setup?

The upgrade to an air source heat pump offers a sustainable heat source whilst also enabling cooling in summer. The cost of running these is far less than most other forms of heating and if anyone mentions the Garden Room Guide we will offer one as a free upgrade before the end of September 2011.

What is the lead time on your garden offices?

This varies but is generally 4 weeks from receipt of an order.

What is the typical on site build time?

Thanks to our innovative off site manufacturing and exceptional project management we can install most of our office buildings with just 5 days on site.

How much does a typical one person office cost?

We only offer exceptional quality materials with specification the same as a new build home or extension. This means we do not compete on low cost options and will not lower our standards. The installation and foundation costs vary according to the unique nature of every site but as a guide we can offer a full installation of a 3.8×3.1m office from approximately £12,000.

How much does a typical two person office cost?

As above some costs vary according to the unique nature of each site but as a guide a 5×3.8m building starts from approximately £15,000

Are there any hidden extras? (planning fees, electrical hookup etc)

We have a very transparent pricing policy and always ensure our customers are aware of the full cost of completing their project. We need to conduct a survey to confirm the price of the electrical connection and to ensure the ground conditions are suitable for our standard foundation system (90% of cases are suitable). If planning permission or building control is needed these attract a fee set by the Local Authority and professional fees may also be necessary.

What is the lifespan of your garden offices, is there any ongoing maintenance?

Our garden office buildings are designed and constructed to last a lifetime and we use tried and trusted house building technology rather than shed or static caravan knowledge. Maintenance is limited to clearing out the gutters and cleaning the windows.

What guarantees come with the office, are they free?

We offer an insurance backed 10 year guarantee with all our garden offices as part of the price. Manufacturer warranties are included with ancillary items such as the electrical items and heating.

If you could give a buyer one piece of advice about buying a garden office, what would it be?

Discuss your project with a number of suppliers and evaluate your options making decisions based on cost and quality. If the office will be used for meeting customers the style and quality is very important to demonstrate the values of your business. Do not be tempted by superficial style without substance.

Like what you read? Give Room 4-you a call on 01709 877888 for a chat about garden offices or visit their website http://www.room4-you.co.uk

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Visit the Garden Spaces websiteVisit the eDEN Garden Rooms websiteVisit the Gembuild website for garden offices & studiosFind out more about Green Studios Visit the Booths Garden Studios websiteVisit the Timeless Garden Rooms website Visit the Smart Garden Offices websiteVisit the Hideouts websiteVisit the ModBox Spaces websiteVisit the My Eco Space websiteSee what a garden room will look like in your garden

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