Know the difference between a shed and a garden room? It’s simple….the windows and doors, says Ade…
One of the Big Money Spinners to emerge during lockdown was Garden Rooms. Before the pandemic there were one or two enterprising individuals that worked out how to build posh-sheds so that they looked anything but like a shed, using quick-to-assemble kits of parts and with nice fininshes and, most importantly, proper windows and especially glass doors…and the market was bumping along nicely. Then Covid came along and BOOM! Every man and his dog is selling Garden Rooms to every other man and his wife and dog. The market is saturated but there are still great opportunities for smart builders.
Of course, whilst in their basic form ‘Garden Rooms’ might simply be a posh shed, even in the few years since they became popular the quality of design and certainly build, have improved immeasurably to the point where great quality materials and, especially, design features, are needed to clinch the deal. Even using the best materials garden rooms are cheaper per metre than conventional extensions, loft conversions and even better quality conservatories. And within that, great windows and especially sliding doors, will play their part.
Whilst I may preach the importance of choosing the right window and door style in most of my columns, to my mind, the most important thing to consider in choosing windows and especially sliding doors for garden rooms is maximising the glass area, actually reducing the frames to a minimum. After all, a garden room with Georgian windows or leaded lights would simply look wrong, though I am sure there are a few around. By maximising the glass area, using frames that are as slim and unobtrusive as possible, you flood the garden room with light, in itself increasing the feeling of space.
Most of the glass area is going to be provided along the front of the room using either sliding panoramic, or more likely bi-folding doors. For very large structures, choose sliding ‘patio’ types as these minimise the frame area. However, most garden rooms will benefit most from bi-folds, that allow the greatest flexibility whatever the weather. For both types, aluminium is usually the only choice due to the slim frame profiles.
There is an enormous choice for bi-folding doors of course. But not all bi-folds are created equal: security is paramount, especially as whatever is inside the garden room is, by definition, on view, so don’t stint – ask your door supplier for the very best locking solutions, coupled of course, with the very best sliding door gear – you don’t want call backs because the doors have jammed.
And when you are providing massive glass areas, give lots of thought to the type of glass you are installing: blinds fitted inside the double glazed units are essential if the garden room is to be usable all year round and are now reliable and with options in terms of colours and opening systems. Also, consider glass upgrades such as triple glazing and argon filled units to further improve the insulation values; again, prices have come down considerably for these options and after all, it’s all about maximising the useability of the room.
Again – buying from a good fabricator will ensure that you have the best choice of products, options and all backed by great advice when you need it.
For further information on Quicklslide visit https://www.quickslide.co.uk/