Saving Energy and Improving Your Home

Steve Rawding, SEH BAC’s Sales and Marketing Director, discusses your home improvement options

What are the major advantages of double or triple glazed windows and doors?

With around a quarter of household heat escaping via the windows, increased energy efficiency will help you bring down your energy bills. With a third pane of glass, triple-glazed windows achieve better U-values. But there are plenty of double glazing options that offer excellent U-values, and it is cheaper than triple glazing. Essentially, it comes down to your needs and your budget. If your home is in a very exposed location, triple-glazed windows may make sense. If not, then a high performing double glazed window will do a similar job.

How much might I be able to save by installing glazing?

The cost of replacement windows depends on the frame materials used, such as timber, aluminium or UPVC, plus the size and style of the window, while the higher the energy efficiency the more it costs. However, it’s important to remember that this cost will be off-set by the amount of money you will save on your heating and electric bills. By installing double glazing in an entirely single-glazed house you could save up to £155 a year in a detached house.

See also: Rethink Your Kitchen Lighting – It’s the End for Halogen Bulbs

SEH BAC glazing

Is a conservatory a good way to enhance the value of my property, or just a way to avoid having to move?

Adding a conservatory not only creates the extra space for you and your family it also adds value to your home if you decide to sell. By adding an extra room to your home, you will increase its desirability to potential buyers. A well-built conservatory could increase your home’s value by at least 5%. If the reason you are thinking of moving is because you need more space, then adding a conservatory will save you all that hassle.

‘Too cold in winter, too hot in summer’ – is that still true of conservatories?

Technological advances and more sophisticated designs mean the conservatory is becoming an integral part of the house rather than an afterthought or a space used as little more than storage in the winter. Now conservatories are warm in the winter and cool in the summer so they can be used as the perfect all-year-round living space, from a dining room, family room, kitchen or a study or to really transform your home.

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SEH BAC conservatory

What different styles of conservatory are available?

Every conservatory can be designed to complement both your home’s current floorplan and living requirements. From versatile Lean-to conservatories and elegant Edwardian, Victorian, and Gable conservatories, to unique, bespoke, P-shaped, and T-shaped conservatories, you will find the perfect conservatory for your home. There are different materials and roof options to choose from too, from a white uPVC modern conservatory to a sleek grey aluminium glass extension.

Do I need planning permission for a conservatory?

Generally, you don’t need planning permission for a conservatory as conservatory development is normally categorised under ‘permitted development rights.’ However, there are certain limits and conditions that must be followed to comply with permitted development rights. The designer will be able to advise you on this when discussing your project.

What other styles of extension are available?

There are other single-storey extensions available, including an elegant timber or uPVC orangery for the perfect balance between a modern glass conservatory and a brick home extension. If you are looking for a contemporary extension with a seamless open-plan living space then a modern flat roof extension is perfect. Or, if you already have an existing conservatory with a polycarbonate roof you can replace it with a solid tiled, glass, or lantern roof to transform it into a usable space all year round.

Why are flat roof extensions currently proving so popular?

Stylish flat roof extensions have risen massively in popularity in recent years. If you’re a fan of clean modern lines then a modern flat roof extension with frameless flat skylights will flood your room with natural light and bring style and simplicity to an extension design. They also provide a simple, cost-effective solution to getting some much-needed additional space, while their comparative ease of construction and discreet visual impact are a huge plus.

SEH BAC interior

How do I go about planning an extension?

When planning your extension, the first thing you need to do is establish what you want the space for; a large space to spend time with family; a home office; a link to your garden or outside space etc. Then you need to decide which size and style you will need to accomplish that. You will also need to consider when to plan your project and most importantly, find a reputable home improvement company to carry out the work.

Where can I find out more about SEH BAC products?

With more than 50 years’ experience, at SEH BAC we have the very latest and most innovative home improvement product ranges available. For more information, visit or call 0800 666 444. You can also visit one of our 13 award-winning show centres across East Anglia, the South East and the Home Counties and speak to our knowledgeable and experienced team.

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