How to design an efficient ground floor extension

Extending your property is an opportunity to enhance your living space. You can create an environment that can increase not just the value and functionality, but importantly add to the enjoyment of your home.  

Homeowners approach us with a variety of needs and priorities including more social space to entertain, a layout that works better for the fixtures and fittings they desire, and designs that work with or help modernise the existing style of their properties. In return we offer a completely bespoke service, working with our clients to create unique plans that meet their requirements. Our team have taken their knowledge and experience to suggest some ways you can design an efficient ground floor extension for your home.

Extensions with an open plan layout can be fantastic for families looking to create communal areas within their home. A large kitchen extension that can accommodate both dining and an element of relaxation is great for creating that sense of togetherness. In this SW18 renovation project, we were able to use the additional space offered by a wraparound extension to create a seating area alongside the spacious kitchen complete with kitchen island and breakfast bar to compliment a sizable dining area with ample room to entertain.

When you explore an open plan layout of this size it’s worth considering how ‘zoning’ can help define the separate elements whilst still maintaining a cohesive space. This can be achieved through architecture such as archways and alcoves or by your interior choices, with décor such as rugs, artwork or even feature walls helping to create subtle divisions.

Although open plan living is the new norm in modern homes, increasingly we’re seeing different approaches being taken to divide space within properties. We undertook a similar project in SW17, however our client was keen to maintain the separate front living room as the primary lounge and to create a more informal social space in the side return extension. With a beautiful kitchen that includes an exposed brick feature wall and full length bi-fold doors onto the garden, this extension integrates perfectly within the property.

It’s important when extending that you consider the entirety of your home and how it may be impacted by your use of the additional space. In this Victorian family home, the owners took the opportunity when constructing their ground floor side extension to consider how the rest of the property could be better utilised. As is common in these sorts of houses, they faced the infamous Middle Room Conundrum. A problem often found in narrow period properties, they decided to remove the internal wall that separated the middle room from the front lounge to create a larger social space. This worked far better alongside the modern kitchen diner created by the new extension. Natural light now flows through the property, whilst the rooms themselves are bigger, brighter, and ultimately far more attractive and functional.

When designing an extension, it’s important to consider the practicality of your property, from necessary access points to lighting and facilities. Doors and windows are crucial to both the functionality and finish of your home. We often see homeowners opt for large scale rear doors, available in a variety of styles, that offer maximum light and the increasingly popular indoor/outdoor living element we’re seeing more of in London homes. When extending onto the rear of your property the impact on your garden can seem daunting, but we frequently see our clients utilise the opportunity to create a more cohesive look between the interior and exterior spaces.

You can learn about the importance of intentional window placement on our blog but it’s important when designing an extension to work with a team who understands how best to maximise natural light. With the right design you can have an extension that is bright and enjoyable, but also energy efficient and futureproofed for our unpredictable British weather. As previously discussed, zoning is a great way of defining spaces within an open plan layout and windows can be an effective but subtle way of achieving this. A great example can be found in this rear extension in SE19. The combination of skylight and full-length feature window are both visually impressive, but also serve to define the dining area in this spacious kitchen diner.

Although homeowners are primarily looking to add an extension that improves their own quality of life in that property, there is the bonus of adding value to your home through desirable changes that house hunters often seek. An additional toilet can add around 5% to the value of your home, which you can also expect when adding a small laundry room or pantry to the ground floor. Property sites suggest that searches for second bathrooms and utility rooms are continuing to rise, so the additional space created when extending your home could provide the perfect opportunity to increase its overall value.

If you’re extending your home, speak with our team of experts for free advice and a no obligation quote to help you better understand making the most of your space. You can get in touch with our team today on 0207 043 2378. You can also book a consultation via our live diary here or email our team on to arrange a call from us.

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