The benefits of a Side Return Extension

While the Victorians designed very practical and wonderfully liveable houses that make fantastic homes, sadly they did not consider the needs of the modern family in their kitchen design. The kitchen is the heart of the family home, and by utilising the side return void found on virtually every Victorian and Edwardian property, it is possible to make a welcoming open plan living space.

The works required to construct a kitchen extension are no more onerous than a typical loft conversion. The side return and rear walls are removed, steelwork is then inserted to support the structure of the house and a new party wall is constructed. The roof is then formed and the rear doors inserted. There are a variety of design solutions here – such as a glazed or Velux roof; folding sliding doors or patio doors – and an architect will be able to advise you on these design elements and the approximate costs. At this point, the shell of the build becomes watertight and the fit out can begin. Underfloor heating is a common solution as you can then do away with radiators and benefit from an evenly spread and cost effective heat source. Next comes the choice of kitchen, lighting design and floor tile. That just leaves one burning question: on which wall do you mount the flat screen TV?

When the room is complete, you’ll have a large open plan space in which the whole family can congregate and enjoy spending time together. Side return extensions transform the section of unused garden or patio area into a truly contemporary living space that will add value to your Victorian or Edwardian home.

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