When many London properties were originally built in the early 1900s, the kitchen was created as a small room for food preparation, possibly for use by domestic help. Today, however, the kitchen has evolved into the heart of the home.
It remains the place where food is prepared and cooked, but has also become the social centre of the home, where friends are entertained, homework completed, and lives discussed over a cup of tea. A kitchen extension can turn a cramped and dark cooking space into a light and open plan space that the whole family can enjoy.
Benefits of a kitchen extension
A kitchen extension is more than simply some extra space to create food or eat family dinners, it can create a whole new light and open plan living area. The extra floorspace can mean room for a kitchen island, a kitchen table, and possibly even a sofa or two to lean into the idea that the new room is more of a communal space than just a kitchen.
If you are considering moving house to find some extra space, a kitchen extension can provide the added room for about the same price as stamp duty on another home. And you would avoid the hassle of moving house and settling into a new area of London.
Types of kitchen extension
The type of kitchen extension you might choose is generally determined by the size and shape of the available outdoor space, your budget, and any permissions you might need from your local council.
The most common form of kitchen extension is a single-storey construction added to the back of the house that opens out into the garden. These kitchen extensions can add a significant amount of extra floor space to your home and can turn a cramped kitchen corner into a large and welcoming cooking and dining space.
Those looking for a smaller extension, or without a back garden, may choose a side-return extension instead. These are particularly popular in Victorian terraced houses, such as those commonly found throughout London, as they fill the small outdoor space available and make good use of what otherwise is often just left for the storage of a bicycle or wheelie bins.
Some people may also choose to combine both the back of the property extension and the side-return extension to create an L-shaped wrap-around extension that makes the most of all exterior space available.
How much does a kitchen extension cost?
Most extensions cost £2,500-£3,500 for every square metre (£220-£330 per square foot) of space added to the building and a kitchen extension is no different. If your extension created an additional 25 square metres of floor space, then you are looking at spending around £60,000-£90,000.
These figures are a rough guide and whilst they can be useful in thinking about a budget for your project, it is important to remember that every build is different. If you would like to get a quote for your dream kitchen then contact us today to find out how much your project may really cost including architects fees, surveys, the superstructure, and all units and worktops.
Planning permission and party walls
A kitchen extension may be considered a ‘permitted development’ and not require additional planning permission if it is under four metres in height and does not extend beyond the original rear wall of the house by six metres for a terraced or semi-detached house or eight metres for a detached property.
Even if you do not need permission from the council to construct the extension, if the building work involves the boundary walls of your property then you will need to serve a Party Wall Notice to your neighbours at least two months before any work begins. If they consent within 14 days then you can proceed with your plans, but if not then they will appoint a party wall surveyor to determine how the work can best proceed. It is always good to keep your neighbours informed of your plans and keep them on-side with any construction project, but the Party Wall Act formalises this process.
If you are unsure which permissions you might need, then it is best to ask an expert for help during the planning stages to avoid a surprise later on that may add significant delays and expense.
Kitchen extension ideas & inspiration
Your dream kitchen will be unique, but if you are looking for some ideas for your kitchen extension then these past projects for some of our happy clients might provide some inspiration or take a look at our portfolio for more.