We have recently been talking to a number of readers who fear their garden is too small for a garden room and if they did buy one it wouldn’t be a useable space, so we thought we would take a closer look at the situation.
If you have only got a small garden you do have to give a garden room project serious thought and use a company that have experience in creating garden rooms for small spaces – it doesn’t always work to just choose a scaled down version of a large garden room, the proportions of the garden room have to be right and it is very important in small gardens that there is some connection between the garden room and its surroundings.
You need to give serious thought as to where you locate a garden room in a small garden and what shape the building will be, but there is no reason why a garden room can’t look great in a small garden and be a functional addition to your home.
Choosing a location for your garden room
If your garden is small you really need to make the most of your space and to do so you probably want to site the garden room as close to the boundary of your garden as possible – but there are planning permission rules you need to consider when placing a garden room close to the boundary of your garden.
If you live in an area of Outstanding Natural Beauty, a National Park, the Broads or in a Listed Building you will have to apply for planning permission no matter what shape or size garden room you are installing, if you don’t live in such an area or a Listed Building then you can install a garden room under Permitted Development rights.
Permitted Development says that a garden room less than 2.5m high cane be sited within 2m of the boundary – this rule generally, but not in all cases limits you to a flat roof design garden room, if you want a garden room with a pitched roof with an overall height of more than 2.5m high you will need to site the building more than 2m from each boundary, this can be very limiting in a small garden, by the time you leave 2m all round the building you’ll have a small garden room in a silly location!
The other planning permission rule to particularly consider in a small garden is that no more than 50% of the garden around the original house is to be covered in additions or buildings so if you have a conservatory, greenhouse and shed already you need to allow for this in your calculations.
Garden rooms in a small garden
Let’s look at an example of locating a garden room in a small 5m x 6m garden:
With a garden room 2.5m high it can be placed within 2m of the boundary line, in the picture below the building is placed right up to the rear and right hand boundary of the garden. The garden room in this example is 2.5m x 2.5m and would make a comfortable home office space for one person – it’s a similar size to a typical small bedroom in a house.
As you can see this 2.5m x 2.5m garden room does not dominate the small garden space and leaves room for planting and seating areas.
If you are looking for something bigger you could fill the whole width of this example garden as long as the building is less than 2.5m high, working on the assumption that there are no additions to the original house you could have a garden room up to 5m x 3m in a 5m x 6m garden – this is quite a large garden room and a very useable space!
A large garden room like this does use a considerable amount of the garden but by filling in the end of the garden it is a good use of space and does still allow for some outside seating.
Most garden rooms are designed to require very little maintenance but you should consider how the garden room will be maintained if you build right up to the boundary line, talk to your supplier at the design stage as they will have experience of such situations.
Experienced garden room suppliers will have created successful small garden installations and we recommend you shop around to find the right solution for your garden, to help you we have asked the garden room suppliers we feature on this site to share their experiences of creating garden rooms for small gardens and will share their experiences in the coming days.
So, even if you have a small garden we’re sure you do have room for a garden room!