Planning A Live-In Kitchen Diner

If you're committed to creating an open-plan look, what should you consider? As with any room, there are a number of golden rules you should obey when planning your kitchen diner. Here are ours.

Design Considerations

Do

  • Most estate agents will tell you there's an increase in demand for kitchens with adjoining family/living room areas, which is unlikely to change in the near future. So, think of the profit you could make when you come to sell up.
  • Is your home in an area that's desirable to families? Adding a live-in kitchen diner to your home could give it an edge over other houses without one.
  • Open-plan layouts are incredibly flexible and can change with your needs - that space for a comfy armchair could just as easily become a home office.
  • Open-plan rooms are far more sociable, which means if you, your other half and kids are constantly working/ eating/watching TV in separate rooms at the moment, you'll get to spend much more time together.

Don't

  • If knocking through means you will lose your only reception room, think twice. You might well regret giving up the privacy of a separate room, and it could put off potential buyers in the future.
  • The bigger your open-plan room, the more it will need heating, particularly where there is predominantly hard flooring, so consider installing underfloor heating.
  • Build an extension that reduces your garden to the size of a cabbage patch, and you may put off future buyers, so remember to try and keep things in proportion.

Is It All Worth It?

If you have an extension built to accommodate your new room, you may need to employ an architect, as well as find a builder. For reputable firms, go to www.riba.org and www.nhbcbuilder.co.uk. To check your building quote is fair, try www.estimators-online.com - they'll give you an estimate for the work you're having done for just £70.50. But as you tot up all the costs in your head it's worth bearing in mind that the right extension on the right house could raise the value of your property by at least 10%, so it should be money very well spent.

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