When planning for a Garden Room, there are several key factors to consider, regardless of design.
Planning ahead properly can save delays, expenses and ensure you have a legal structure.
Oak Garden Rooms differ from Orangeries and Conservatories, being freestanding buildings rather than extensions to an existing structure.
A Garden Room can provide a peaceful, quiet space to enjoy your garden alone or with family, protected from the elements.
It can also serve a more practical purpose, for example as an Oak Framed Office.
Whatever the intended purpose, the following elements should be addressed before buying and building to make the process as simple as possible.
1. Size and Location of your Garden Room
There are no hard and fast rules governing the size of a Garden Room. The only real limit is the space available to build. Consider the purpose and the amount of people that will be using it at a given time.
For a one person Oak Framed Office, a small garden room structure will suffice. If it is to be used as a family dining area, space for entertaining friends or a home gym, a larger footprint will be necessary.
It’s helpful to keep a clear space of at least 18” around the outside of the structure to allow easy installation and maintenance access.
2. Garden Room Design
The design and style of your Garden Room is mainly down to personal taste, although how you plan to use it will also play a part.
Floor to ceiling glazing can be used on one or more walls. Or large skylights can be included for all-round lighting.
Alternatively, a half-glazed structure with brick or Oak Cladding on the lower walls incorporates natural colours and textures to complement its surroundings.
We encourage our community to choose a Bespoke Oak Framed Garden Room to guarantee a perfectly designed structure. Not only will this cater to your exact needs, but will drive property value in the long run.
How? Oak is a premium building material. And having this structure on your property is far more valuable than a boxed kit found at any franchised retailer.
3. Foundations for your Oak Framed Garden Room
Since deep foundations are only necessary in areas of soil with a very low weight bearing capacity, they will not be needed.
Although Oak is a relatively heavy material for building a frame, Garden Rooms aren’t always large structures. If in doubt, consult a local authority building control officer or an independent Approved Inspector.
For more permanent structures, especially larger ones, a solid concrete base is preferable. However, this could raise costs.
Paving slabs are a cheaper option and easier to lay for less experienced DIYers and are fine for smaller structures. The base should be larger than the footprint of the building. This will support the walls and prevent contact between the Oak Frame and the ground.
Despite its famous water resistance, Oak in permanent contact with ground surfaces will eventually absorb moisture and rot, weakening the structure.
Please reach out if you have any questions regarding the construction of your Garden Room. We are happy to provide advise for avoiding this situation.
If you’re a self-builder, it is entirely possible to assemble your Garden Room yourself. Though we recommend builders and installers, we do provide verbal support throughout your project.
By purchasing an Oak Garden Room kit, whether bespoke or from an existing range, these risks are eliminated. Our Kit Form is like a ‘paint-by-numbers’ project.
The frame elements are constructed off site by experienced staff and delivered ready for assembly.
This can then be erected with minimum of fuss, completing the basic frame in as little time as possible, ready for finishing. Care should be taken with any glazed panels installed afterwards and heavy frame components should not be lifted without assistance.
5. Electrical Supply
Connecting your Garden Room to mains electricity is not mandatory, but might be necessary if used as a work area or office.
Although the work is straightforward, it must be carried out by an electrician approved under the Part P Electrical Competent Person Scheme.
All electrical work must conform to the IEE wiring regulations and BS 7671 and the local building control department must be notified.
6. Planning Permission for Garden Rooms
In most cases a Garden Room will not need Planning Permission, but there are exceptions.
If the building covers half of the garden, is not for domestic use or is over 3 metres high with a pent roof or 4 metres high with an apex roof it is liable.
If a Garden Room is within 2 metres of a boundary and over 2.5 metres high it will also require planning permission. A summerhouse nearer to a public highway (any road or footpath with a public right of way) then the original dwelling is also subject to planning permission.
If any of these factors potentially apply, contact your Local Authority Building Authority for clarification. Violating these rules could result in fines, prosecution and enforced demolition.
We specialise in manufacturing Bespoke Oak Frames for Garden Rooms such as Outdoor Kitchens, Home Offices, & multi-functional Family Rooms.
If you need help with any stage throughout the planning for a Garden Room, our staff are always available.