Creating your perfect inner-city home
Finding your dream home, in a great inner-city location, might feel like looking for a very expensive needle in a very large haystack. The unpalatable compromise of a lovely home, far from your dream spot, often seems the only option. But the savvy amongst us do not settle for such compromise. Snapping up property ripe for development is increasingly the only way to create a dream home that ticks every box. With this in mind, we have put together some renovation hints and tips – so that the city can house your perfect home, created by you, for you.
City location rural feel
Uniting almost all inner-city homes is one unfortunate commonality: a separation from nature. Aside from perhaps a parking space at the front, the average terraced house may only have a small paved outdoor space at the rear. Characterised by shadow casting walls and cheerless paving slabs, these ‘gardens’ add little to a property – rarely used, and easily forgotten. Instead, centre the glorious outdoors within your home, with a renovation to both expand your useable square footage, and flood the rest of your space with light.
A stunning way to bring the outside in, is with full height glass sliding doors. Their impact can be enhanced thorough material continuity in both spaces, such as decking matching interior flooring, or even a continuous unit running as if unbroken through the glass wall. Maximise the green within the courtyard, with easy to manage plants such as creepers and bamboo, to create a feature that can be enjoyed from inside as well as out.
One common problem in city housing is privacy. A bog-standard terrace may be space efficient and community fostering, but sometimes you don’t want to be able to hear and see your neighbours every move. Some simple steps to seclusion include easy additions such as black out blinds, double glazing, and screen blinds enabling you to see out, but not be seen.
Lighten it up
Especially in the grey weather of England, terrace homes are not known for being light and bright. Windows are often small, and closely packed streets reduce their efficiency. So why not look up. However narrow the street, light from above will remain unblocked. Think outside the box when it comes to considering a skylight – a long narrow one can elevate the darkest corridor, or strategic placement in a single-story rear extension can offer light to the heart of the home without more significant structural difficulties.
If you find yourself walking towards your new home, unexcited by the anticipation of it emerging into view, you know interior renovations are not quite enough. Even the most spotless interiors fade into insignificance, if the outside of your property remains indistinct from the row of terraces it sits within. It needs livening up. Literally. From large projects such as a living wall, to simpler flowering creepers such as wisteria, or even just a well planted border garden, the outside of your home should be as mood-lifting as inside.
Keep it kind
If you are sold on renovating your space to become the perfect home, bearing in mind the possible impact of your plans on the rest of your street is important. Keeping your neighbours on side goes beyond simply the long-term impact of your plans, such as their sun and light access
Communication is key – visit your neighbours prior to beginning any project, inform them of the work being done, and provide them with a contact number should they encounter any problems. Ensure work is undertaken at sociable hours, keep roads clear, and generally remain courteous of your neighbour’s needs. You’re settling in for the long haul, so make sure you develop a strong community around your new home. Plus, they may be the ones renovating next!
The most important factor in any renovation project isn’t actually your style agenda, however life-or-death the kitchen tile selection seems at the time. The safety of yourself, the public, and your renovation team are uncompromisable. Research relevant health and safety regulations, make sure you pick a well-regarded team, and utilise important safety equipment, such as safety barriers provided by Heaton Products on their impressive website, www.heatonproducts.co.uk. Once you have done that, check planning laws, then give your creativity full reign.
Image credit at the very top of the article credit: IR Stone/Bigstock.com