How timber frame can deliver you more space

15 February 2018 Mark Stevenson

Anyone considering building a new home quickly realises three things:

  1. The end value of the finished home is set by the amount of floor area
  2. The size of your home is limited by the plot
  3. Space comes at a premium
The usable space is a fundamental metric in understanding the valuation of your home - the more floor space it has, the higher the value it will be. There are other considerations of course but this is one of the main ones.

The problem for self builders is that floor space comes at a premium and construction costs vary from £1400 per sq m upwards. This means that finding the extra value by building more space can significantly add cost to your build. The trick is to think smart and find extra ‘free’ space. So how do you find free floor space? Simple…

It's in the walls!

When you choose your build system for your home, thickness is often disregarded and performance is used as the main criteria for selection. This isn’t necessarily wrong as we all want lower energy bills but when you consider that the size of your home is limited by your planning permission this effectively means the thicker the wall the less floor area you will have to enjoy and the lower its value!

Insulation can add width to external walls, which takes up internal floor space – the poorer the performance the thicker the insulation to achieve the same energy reduction. Poor insulation and thick building systems therefore take up space that could be used to add value or make rooms more generous.

Imagine if you could reduce the width of the walls of your building, without compromising the overall thermal performance or the designed footprint, to release space and unlock your homes full value.
At Potton we not only use intelligent architecture to develop innovate house designs with efficient floor layouts, we also specify and use only the highest performance insulation materials.

The benefit of doing so not only lowers your energy usage and therefore fuel bills but also effectively ‘thins’ your wall thickness thereby maximising floor space and end value. All Potton homes benefit from the use of Kingspan Kooltherm wall insulation which delivers superior thermal performance with a thinner profile.

How much does all this matter?

Kingspan Insulation investigated the financial benefits from using Kingspan Kooltherm wall insulation solutions versus comparative insulation solutions. The results are well worth looking into.  

Great news for self-builders...

Kingspan Logic Plus render
The summary of the resulting report - ‘The Real Value of Space in Commercial Real Estate’ – reveals that Kooltherm consistently outperforms alternative solutions, creating additional usable space and delivering an exceptional return on investment depending upon the type of building and location.

This is great news for self-builders who can also enjoy the same benefits as commercial clients by working with us to use a build system with Kingspan Kooltherm at its core.

If you consider an average self build home of 200m2 spread across two floors, it is very easy to work out the benefits. By using a build system such as Kingspan Ultima which could be say 50mm thinner than an alternative build system, the extra 50mm becomes 4 m2 of floor space across the building.

To construct, this space would cost in the region of £5600* but by using the Ultima building system with Kingspan Kooltherm insulation it effectively comes free! Even more impressive is the fact that the extra floor space generates an additional end value of possibly £12000**depending upon location.

So when developing your self build project don’t just choose a build system based upon the stated energy performance, also look at its thickness and account for the loss of floor space associated with poor performing systems.

As in the case above, 50mm doesn’t seem like a lot but when you do the numbers, the financial implications are significant and the savings may increase your equity or enable luxury features to be incorporated which you otherwise wouldn’t have been able to afford.
*Assuming a Build cost of £1400 per square meter
** Assuming a house value per m2 of £3000 per square metre.

About Kingspan Kooltherm

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The Kingspan Kooltherm® is an extensive range of Premium Performance rigid thermoset phenolic insulation for roofs, walls and floors.

Kingspan Kooltherm has a super high thermal performance with a thermal conductivity of 0.018-0.023W/m.K these are the most thermally efficient insulation products commonly used.

Why Kingspan Kooltherm®?

Kingspan Kooltherm® is one of the most thermally efficient insulants available which means you can minimise thickness of your build-up and maximise usable space, compared to those using other less efficient products.
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