Happy when it rains

Not only can a rainwater harvesting system be a first line of defence against flooding, it can also help you achieve long term sustainability in our unpredictable climate. Jae Lester of RainWater Harvesting explains In recent years the UK has... View Article

It’s time for timber

Andrew Orriss of the Structural Timber Association explains the basics around choosing structural timber, and why it holds so much promise for self-builds, particularly on sustainability grounds Structural timber is now used across over a quarter of all new homes... View Article

Small is beautiful

LISTEN HERE 🔊 With an increasing value being placed on outdoor spaces, Ronan O’Dowd of Acheson & Glover shares his top tips on how to make the most of a small garden The Covid-19 pandemic brought a new appreciation for... View Article

Forming an opinion

LISTEN HERE 🔊 Chris Stride at ICFA discusses why self-builders, particularly those looking to maximise energy efficiency, should consider building with Insulated Concrete Formwork (ICF) If you’ve been researching your new build project recently you will notice that the spotlight... View Article

Structural warranties – a guide

LISTEN HERE 🔊 Advantage Home Construction Insurance (AHCI) navigates through the often complex world of structural warranties required by mortgage firms, providing some clarity for self-builders A structural defects warranty (also known as latent defects insurance) covers defects affecting newly... View Article

Versatile wet rooms

LISTEN HERE 🔊 Neil Whitehead from Impey offers insights into how to create the ideal wetroom or wet area shower space for every size and style of home The coveted wetroom shower space has many guises and, when thoughtfully planned... View Article

The warm glow of lower bills

Rises in gas and electricity prices mean that specifying more energy efficient and renewable heating options such as biomass is even more important, as Ian Sams from Specflue explains Renewable energy means energy produced from sources that are constantly replenished.... View Article

Off-grid sewerage

Rebecca Taylor from HD Services gives her insights into getting groundwork specifications right for your build, and explains the options available when no mains sewerage connection is possible Building your own home can be one of the most rewarding things... View Article

Interior Inspiration: Home Offices

With the arrival of Covid, hundreds of thousands of homeowners took to their studies (or sofas) to work from home. As householders continue to combine home-working with being in the office to an unprecedented degree, we round up some of... View Article

Rooflights – historic solutions

You might think rooflights are a modern invention, but as Peter Daniel of The Rooflight Company explains, they have a long history which ties into humanity’s perennial desire to bring light into buildings Natural light has been worshipped since time... View Article

Ask the Expert – The light fantastic

Marketa Rypacek of Industville looks at which of the many types of decorative lighting are best for your project, gives insights into how to go low energy without compromising light levels, and explains why lighting is like jewellery HOW CAN... View Article

Space to relax

Megan Baker of My Fitted Bedroom says that getting organisation and storage right are top of the agenda for bedrooms in 2021 The events of 2020 have seen a surge in people organising their homes – re-evaluating what they really... View Article

Getting brickwork right

Sean Wilkins of the Brick Development Association gives specification, design and workmanship tips that will ensure that your brickwork is successful Despite being used for thousands of years with evidence of their use in the UK dating back to the... View Article

Long distance champions

LISTEN HERE 🔊 How virtual project management was the answer for long-distance clients to turn a Victorian vicarage into a modern masterpiece TEXT JAYNE DOWLE IMAGES MATTHEW CATTELL When the major renovation of Melinda and Chris Swann’s Victorian vicarage near... View Article

Tapping into savings

Stephen Johnson from Quooker UK talks through the benefits of boiling water taps, and how including them in your project not only gives convenience, but can also help save energy Boiling water taps have grown rapidly in popularity over the... View Article

Contemporary blend

LISTEN HERE 🔊 Set in a secluded Hampshire valley, a very contemporary home blends into its rural setting thanks to a design by two architectural practices that echoes traditional local buildings. James Parker reports TEXT JAMES PARKER IMAGES RICHARD CHIVERS... View Article

Layer cake

The Hammills caused quite a stir when they remodelled a tired old Thirties house in York into a very modern home that became the talk of the town TEXT & IMAGES HEATHER DIXON Passers-by thought Erica and Michael Hammill’s house... View Article

Setting the bar high

LISTEN HERE 🔊 After a couple of frustrating years spent hunting for a new home, Paul and Sarka embarked on a self-build journey with Huf Haus to realise a property that met their high expectations TEXT EMMA HEDGES IMAGES LOTHAR... View Article

A chalet for all seasons

LISTEN HERE 🔊 Christa and Del Dobson had been planning their alpine-style project for nearly 20 years, and it has finally come to fruition in a luxurious off-grid chalet TEXT NICHOLA HUNTER IMAGES DOUGLAS GIBB Although Christa grew up in... View Article

Patience is a virtue

LISTEN HERE 🔊 By astutely saving up for over a decade, Chris and Linda Anderson had the time and money to re-configure their 1930s London semi to be exactly how they wanted, including a dramatic blend of indoor and outdoor TEXT... View Article