PRESS INFORMATION

Date: February 2009

BOOST THE SIZE OF YOUR HOME IN WEEKS - WITH A RECESSION BUSTING (AND GREEN) ECOSPACE STUDIO

ecospace adds value to your property and is cheaper (and easier!) than moving home, or building a traditional extension or loft conversion

If you’re looking for a fast, recession-busting and non-stressful way to boost your live/work space and add value to your property during the downturn, take a look at an architect-designed ecospace studio - the original and best contemporary garden studio.

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The architect's 5.2 x 3.8m ecospace studio, featuring an extended cedar wood deck

The doctor's practice - a
6.8 x 3.8m ecospace comprising consulting room, waiting room and integral cloakroom

7.2 x 5.1m ecospace studio nestling in the woods above the Welsh valleys - looking into the living space

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Far cheaper (and faster) than moving house, or building a traditional extension or loft conversion, an ecospace studio provides a stylish, multi-purpose solution for home working, guest space, a home gym or playroom - in as little as 12 weeks (including a usual installation period of about four days), and at a typical cost of £18,950 plus VAT & delivery.  This compares to a cost of £10,500 for stamp duty alone on a standard £350,000 property purchase*, while a small and basic single storey 4mx4m extension can easily cost up to £28,000 excluding VAT**.  A garden studio will also add value to a property, for example, one graphic designer’s £16,000 ecospace in north London increased his property sale value by £50,000.

*£10,500 stamp duty value based on 3% of £350,000 (HM Revenue & Customs, 2008-9) and excluding the additional costs of moving home eg: removal, conveyancing and estate agent’s fees.

** RICS (The Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors) Property Makeover Price Guide Summer 2008.

With press headlines predicting a further drop in house prices in 2009, and an uncertain jobs market, many property owners are still wary of the financial burden of moving home in order to boost their living space, while a traditional extension will cost far more, take much longer to build, and has the added stress of finding a suitable builder and project-managing the works for weeks if not months.

An ecospace studio is easily achievable in terms of meeting planning requirements - in fact in most cases you can order your studio and have it erected without any planning issues.  In some circumstances - for example, if it exceeds certain size restrictions, or you live in a restricted area, planning permission may be required.  But because ecospace studios are designed and produced by architects, a complete ‘turn key’ solution including a planning application can be provided.

With clients including Chris Beardshaw - the award winning garden designer/TV presenter and the editor of Grand Designs Magazine/director of Grand Designs Live Show - ecospace studios meet the growing trend for home working as rising numbers of e-workers and home-based business owners see the work/life benefits of working from home.  These include graphic designers, architects, photographers, lawyers, musicians and producers, as well as doctors, physiotherapists, chiropractors and life coaches.

For home owners simply requiring an extra room or flexible living space, the studios offer an affordable way to increase home square footage, while for those at the top of the market, an ecospace will also provide a great home cinema or relaxation room for the growing ‘homedulgence’ trend for living the high life without going out, as we spend more leisure time at home with friends and family.

And the total flexibility of an ecospace studio means you can choose a modular or bespoke-size studio, and fit it out to meet your exact specifications (there are hundreds of combinations), and all at a fixed price - without those extra unexpected costs typical of building projects and expensive over-runs.  Once you’ve decided on the required size and usage of your studio, you then choose the style - flat or mono pitch roof, and specify the ‘plug on’ modules you require to extend the live/work area.  These include integral workstation and storage, kitchen, shower and cloakroom pod options, together with mezzanine level chill out pads.  Configurations and window positions can easily be altered to suit your particular space and you can choose from 20 different flooring colours.

The green bit:  Pretty much everything is eco with an ecospace!  The structure uses sustainable wood and cedar cladding, and is manufactured in the UK.  It has an organic low maintenance sedum** planted roof, which has high insulation properties and aesthetically reduces the visual impact of the studio, low energy Scandinavian underfloor heating, high performance insulation and Scandinavian double-glazing for all year round use.  And, of course, if you use it as your workplace you will reduce your carbon footprint by cutting out commuting.

** The sedum roof is planted with small plants, herbs and succulents.

An ecospace is engineered to last and built to house building standards.  Maintenance free western red cedar cladding is used for the exterior walls, and premium grade smooth birch plywood is used for internal finishes so no conventional plaster boarding or decorating is required, eliminating potential plaster ‘cracking’.  And, minimal site preparation is needed as long as the site is relatively flat - so there’s no need for conventional foundations or a concrete base as the studio is engineered to simply lie upon adjustable steel bearing shoes.  The fast track ecospace installation service also means that once onsite, the studio is fully insulated, heated and ready for use in just days.

For more information on ecospace studios and the modular or bespoke sizes available, visit www.ecospacestudios.com or call 0207 703 4004.

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TOP TIPS FOR CHOOSING A GARDEN STUDIO FOR LIVE/WORK SPACE

Tips by Lee-Anthony Town, partner & architect, ecospace:

  1. Firstly decide on the main purpose or use of the space.  Is it primarily a workspace, or do you want to create a multi-purpose room for relaxation, guest space or art studio?  This will help you identify the studio size required.
  2. Site location - identify the best position for the studio according to space, geographical placing, neighbours, gradient (minimal site preparation is needed for an ecospace studio as long as the site is flat).
  3. Roof - will a flat or mono pitch roof be best?  This will depend on your own aesthetic preference and whether you require additional internal height - eg: for a mezzanine chill out pad.
  4. Choose your preferred size of studio.  ecospace offers many sizes including 4mx3.8m, 5.2mx3.8m, 6.4mx3.8m, 7.6mx3.8m, but any size or configuration can be manufactured to provide a custom-made solution.  Mark out the space in your garden with tape to see how it will look.  (NB points 2-5 can be clarified and discussed during a site visit by ecospace once a client is aware of its pricing structure).
  5. Fit out options - does your proposed manufacturer offer you a range of set price fit-out options?  Do you need a cloakroom, shower pod, kitchenette, integral workstation and storage?  If not, how much will this add to the cost if sourced separately?  Do you want to move or add additional windows?  Does it include heating, lighting, wall switches, sockets & BT points?  Do you have any specific requirements - can these be met?  For example, does it have good sound insulation?
  6. Look at the ecocredentials of the supplier.  What are the exact building specifications?  How energy efficient will it be?  What type of heating, insulation or lighting will be used?  How thermally efficient are the windows?  What is the thickness of the walls & roof?  How are the materials sourced?  Where is the studio manufactured?  Is the studio guaranteed and how long will it last?
  7. Get a quote from the supplier for the total price including the studio, options, flooring, assembly and delivery.  Ask the supplier for the anticipated delivery & installation period from confirmed order to delivery.  How accurate are they?  Do they have customer references? Who owns the company, are they professional architects or jobbing builders?  Can they offer viewings of examples of their studios nationwide?
  8. Once a quote is agreed, ecospace can assess whether planning permission is required.  As part of an architectural practice, ecospace can also identify any possible concerns or requirements/how these can be addressed.  After the order is confirmed, ecospace can manage any planning issues with your local planning department and also submit the planning application for you.  (NB not all suppliers offer this service).
  9. Confirm the delivery date with your supplier.  Clear the site and access points for the installation.
  10. Obtain quotes for services to your studio and schedule the work.  Alternatively your supplier (or ecospace) can arrange this for you.

Finally...start enjoying your new garden studio!

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The designer's 5.2 x 3.8m ecospace studio

This 7.6 x 3.8m ecospace studio is finished in black stained cedar wood cladding and mono pitch sloping roof with sky light. Inside it features a living space with integral furniture, mezzanine chill out pad, mini-kitchen, shower pod, and was seen at Grand Designs Live

Interior of the Grand Designs Live ecospace, showing the mezzanine chill out pad, integral furniture, mini-kitchen, large sky light and funky green flooring


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Interior of the Grand
Designs Live ecospace
showing the living area,
sloping ceiling and funky
green flooring

The shower pod in the
Grand Designs Live
ecospace

The director's 5.2 x 3.8m ecospace studio


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The director's 5.2 x 3.8m ecospace studio, showing the integrated workstation

7.2 x 5.1m ecospace studio, nestling in the woods above the Welsh valleys. This doubles as an office and self contained guest accommodation, and incorporates office/bedroom, living space with rotating log burning stove, mezzanine chill out pad, shower pod and mini-kitchen

7.2 x 5.1m ecospace studio, nestling in the woods above the Welsh valleys - exterior view


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7.2 x 5.1m ecospace studio, looking down on the living area from the mezzanine chill out pad

7.2 x 5.1m ecospace studio, looking through to the office/bedroom, and showing the mezzanine chill out pad above

The doctor’s ecospace – office with a view


   
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The marketing consultant's 7.3 x 4.0m ecospace studio - showing the mono pitch sloping sedum roof, planted with small plants, herbs and succulents

   

For further information, please contact:

ecospace

T: 0207 703 4004

Or visit: www.ecospacestudios.com

Issued by:

Becky Charman/Sue Hitchcock

becky.charman@lawsonclarke.co.uk / sue.hitchcock@lawsonclarke.co.uk

Press Office, LawsonClarke PR

T: 01285 658844

Ref: EC01/2009