Latest Project Completion – Grove Road – Sep 2020

APT are proud to show you our latest completed project to complete in Barnes, the new upcoming area in house renovations, extensions and new builds.

The Job involved a side infill extension, internal remodelling and top to bottom renovation.

For a free architectural consultation, Contact our Barnes specialised architects today!

 

Fawley-Lodge-Before-After

Latest Project Completion – Farleigh Lodge – July 2020

First Build Since Lockdown

Since the lessening of the lockdown restrictions, we are proud to announce the start of a new project. The first since the lockdown.

A rear #extension, loft conversion & #renovation on a Victorian terrace house on Valnay street #tooting

For a free architectural consultation, Contact our #architects today!

Architectural Styles of London

Every day many visitors come to London to enjoy the city’s rich history and culture. How much do you know about London’s architecture? In this article, we’ll talk you through the famous architectural styles in London that you’ll see around you every day.

Gothic architecture; 1100 -1350 AD. Revival 1700 – 1860 AD

Charles Barry was one of Britain’s most influential architects, who built the UK’s most important 18th century building. Barry inspired the Gothic Revival which was a conscious movement that began in England to revive and build Gothic structures. The revival of gothic architecture peaked in the second half of the 18th century through to the mid 19th century.

Gothic architecture featured in London’s most iconic building. The Houses of Parliament which was built in 1840.
Not only did he design the main hall structure, he also designed the Famous Elizabeth Tower (AKA Big Ben) which houses the great clock and bells including Big Ben. The less noted Victoria Tower was also architecturally desinged by Barry later in 1860

Charles Barry’s big break came when he won a competition to design the new Royal Manchester Institution for the promotion of literature, science and arts (now the Manchester Art Gallery).

Houses of parliament
The Houses of Parliament

 

Baroque architecture; 1600-1750

Although this architectural style was originally inspired by Italian / Parisian Baroque masonery. The Baroque designs adorn some of the oldest most elaborate buildings that we can see in London today.

Londons Architecture
Regent Street

Baroque utilises bold masses of curved shapes, strong lines, and limestone render tones. Above all, Baroque is romantic; decorative elements appeal almost naturally to the senses in a way few others can. Yet the appeal comes natural to us all, with its lavish use of curves and embellishment. There are many examples of Baroque architecture around England, most notably Castle Howard and Blenheim Palace.

 

Georgian architecture; 1714-1830

Throuout the Georgian Era, London grew rapidly to the further reaches of town. (Labelled as Greater London today). Georgian homes can be found up and down the country in unban, rural & central settings.
Georgian Terraced homes are frequently undertaken as remodelling projects by APT Renovation.

Georgian properties are more commonly seen in the Terrace format. If when you think of the famous pastel coloured Notting Hill home, these are quintessential London Georgian townhouses. We have found most of these styled homes to exist within the M25 mainly out towards the West & South West of London.

They focused on building London’s great estates, such as the still privately-owned Grosvenor Estate and the Bedford Estate.

 

Grosvenor

Grosvenor Square, Mayfair

 

For a free no obligation quote about any kind of residential extension or construction work, call us now on:

0207 223 6417

 

 

Back when the Georgians were building London, most georgian residences were built in the countryside with acres of green space. The facade of these homes properties were mostly red bricked, with tall windows and built in a symmetrical style.

Locationwise, you mainly find the best example of Georgian architecture can be found in & around the Mayfair and Park Lane & Bayswater.

Regency architecture; 1811-1820

Park Cresent
Park Crescent, Regent’s Park

 

Regency architecture is defined as the era that transcended the Georgian period. Despite spanning only ten years, many of London’s central residential buildings were erected at this time and unlike earlier examples of Georgian architecture, homes of this period are marked by a white stucco facade.

John Nash was the leading architect at this time. He was responsible for designing and laying out Regent Street and the great park of St James’s.

John Nash is most noted for the redesign of Buckingham Palace for King George IV, However his plans became too elaborate for King George to afford them. He was later relieved of his duties as Head Architect for the famous palace.

Regency architecture has much been found by many architects to be far more intricate in design than the simpler Georgian style that preceded it.

Areas such as Victoria & Slone Square and the roads surrounding Regent’s Park display many examples of London’s grand Regency architecture.

Victorian architecture; 1837-1901

Following the Industrial Revolution and in light of the country’s increased growth, the Victorian era is defined by it’s revival of elaborate and intricate architectural styles. Buildings like the London St Pancras Renaissance hotel are perfect examples of Victorian grandeur.

St Pancras
St Pancras International

 

Along with the prosperity of the industrial age came a surge in population which resulted in house shortages. This led to mass house construction around the suburbs of London. It is most likely that if you have travelled around Greater London recently, you are likely to have passed a street of Victorian residences. Victorian homes initially were built for the expanding middle classes, who were experiencing real wealth for the first time.

However, in reality, quite the contrary occured. Victorians homes were mostly populated with the lower class. Such as those working in the industial plants & factories and hence there after, properties of this era were infact constructed for the poorer Londoners.

This period also brought about a time for change when it came to living standards for London’s residents. All across town people were able to live in properly constructed homes with good sanitation.

This change inturn made the east end of the city, areas like Aldgate, Whitechapel and Mile End turn into slums as more people moved into the central areas of London for work.

For a free no obligation quote about any kind of residential extension or construction work, call us today on:

0207 223 6417

 

 

Edwardian architecture; 1901-1910

Edwardian House
A detached Edwardian Era House

 

With similar growth and construction rates as the Victorians. The Edwardian era was known for constructing even more of London’s houses in the terraced style that worked well in the previous period.

The middle class house construction programs carried out more builds thoughout this era than previously seen. The houses were larger with the famous Edwardian feature of high ceilings.

Edwardian houses are generally larger than their Victorian counterparts as they were constructed with a larger build footprint. Many fine examples of Edwardian architecture can be found in areas such as Balham, Fulham & Putney.

Art Deco Architecture; 1920s and ’30s

South Gate Station
Southgate Underground Station

 

From Southgate Underground Station’s spaceship-like design, to Balham’s Du Cane Court supposedly spared from bombing in WWII as the German’s planned to use it as military office if they were successful in the war. – Another example of Art Deco is Battersea Power station. Redevelopment plans are currently underway to turn the area into a residential neighbourhood with a unique blend of restaurants, shops, parks and cultural spaces.

The Art Deco style didn’t feature in individual homes much in London, but were moreso prevalent in flats & appartment blocks. It can be seen appropriate that the Royal Institute of British Architecture (RIBA) is housed in a noteworthy Art Deco building.

Post-war architecture; 1950’s onwards

Many parts of London were destroyed during the Second World War, which meant that a miriad of residential housing was needed to re-house the tens of thousands of civilians affected by the air raids. With swift efficiency, high rise blocks were introduced across London.

Trellick Tower, Kensal Town
Trellick Tower, Kensal Town

 

Some of the most famous examples of post war architecture is dotted along the South Bank of London and also across the other side of river around the Barbican. This whole area was destroyed during WW2 and rebuilt in the well known Brutalistic style.

Speak to us today a free no obligation quote on residential build work in the Pimlico area, call us now on:

0207 223 6417

 

 

Present day

Modern Day New Build House
New Build Fulham

Inspired by the modern technology, lack of land space & the evergrowing need of building upwards, developers continue to construct tall lavish homes.

Despite economical uncertainty and a growing population, countless new homes builds, renovations & extensions that defy development pressures continue to go up all around London in 2020.

Are you considering making any alterations to your home in South West London? Contact APT today to find out what we can do to increase the livable space within your home and contribute to the beautiful architecture seen daily around London.

This concludes our journey around London’s famous architectural history. Feel free to browse the many modern contemporary projects displayed throughout our site.

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Design & Build Company Benefits

What are the benefits of a Design & Build opposed to hiring an architect & builder separately?

Let’s jump right into this shall we?

Benefits:

  • Cost – There is no need to pay separately for an architect, a builder & a contractor. All experts come in the combined cost of the whole project at a far lower price than each professional being individually sourced.
  • Complete service from a single source of contact– In residential construction there is no better self assured way of knowing that things are going to plan than when there is a single contact. Clients can call the team who can then give you the lowdown of the latest onsite happenings,  deal with any additional concerns you may have & advise you on the best steps to take.
  • Meticulous interpretation of design brief on site – There is always fluidity between the communication of the builders on site, the project managers & the contractors & the architect. There is less responsibility offloading as all members of the team are behind one phone number if you cannot reach who you want to, someone else there can pass the message and keep communication moving.
  • Strict adherence to agreed timelines and budgets –  Due to budgets & costs being laid out for all parties to see within the whole team, this means there is awareness for each team to meet the the budgets.
Design & Build Team
Design & Build Team
  • Flexibility to alter designs and specifications to meet the clients requirements – In a case where there are structural adjustments  required after the initial architectural drawing, there is no need to restart communication with the architect & pay additional  for extra revisions. Design & Build in-house architects can quickly understand the adjustment and carry out the revision.
  • Responsibility for the whole property construction – There is only one entity to process the control, design & programme of the build, so if something goes a-rye the team are left with no one to pass responsibility off to. This ensures the team will meet the high standards of the client.
  • Dedicated project and Architect -You would have a dedicated Project Manager & Architect assigned to you. The personnel who will focus on your project are less likely to change, unless required to.
  • Less administrative work – There is less paper work and research for you do leaving you to concentrate on the important things in life.
  • Team Co-ordination – Most Design & Build teams have solidified relationships with structural engineers, party wall surveyors & quantity surveyors.
Design & Build Kitchen Extensions

APT offer a turn-key solution for clients who require both a designer and a builder combined.

A typical project that APT provide includes the following stages:

  • Project feasibility & concept design
  • Planning application submission & build regulation compliance
  • Work scheduling & planning
  • The build & construction
  • Snagging & completion

Whatever stage of the building process you are at, we have the skills and expertise to help make the project a success. Are you yet to enter the design phase of your project build? If you are, a company like APT can help make the most out of any building in need of renovation.

Once our designs are in place then our construction team will take over. Our services don’t stop after the project completion. Once construction has been completed then we can provide an on-going maintenance warranty for structural anomalies and future refurbishment.

architectural-planners

Finding a Build Team after Planning Permission Approval

It would be a lot easier if the planning process were more predictable. In the ideal world normal planning application would be decided within eight weeks of being submitted.

However in reality, not many are approved that quickly these days, and that leaves you time to look around and find the right builder.


The first thing to consider is to ask yourself how important a particular job is to you. If you’re keen, then it’s critical to get in as early as possible. If the client and their architect have had a pre-app session and the planners have indicated agreement, there’s a real likelihood it will sail sweetly through. That happens, and if the client is keen to get the job under way, then the building regulations, working drawings and tendering may even happen before the formal planning application is issued.

That’s pretty extreme, but it does happen. If you’ve waited until notice of the approval is published, then you may have already missed the boat. There’s at least a week to ten-day delay between the formal approval and then subsequent publication in the market intelligence services (such as Planning Pipe) to take into consideration. A fast-moving job can be well on its way by the time the market hears about it. The lesson is clear – on non-contentious projects that you’d like to price for, get in at the application stage.

Some people say that for the sake of efficiency, it’s better to stick to approvals. A quarter to a third of applications are refused, and it’s a waste of effort to chase a project that doesn’t get permission. However, if permission has been refused on a minor point of design, it may well go straight back to the architect. They will do a re-design and re-submission. Then it should get approved with no further delay, and may move very quickly. If you were holding off for approval, you’ve missed it.

Professional sales people tend to go in at the early stages, for a number of reasons. The first is to catch the fast-moving jobs. But even if you’re talking to an architect and it turns out you’re too early, then you can start to build the relationship. Be pleasant about it. Emphasise your interest and the benefit you can bring to the client. Then ask about the best time to get in touch again. The architect can often give you a date for the planning committee, and you’ll know to give them a ring after that.

Of course, you can’t go for the hard sell at the early stages. Don’t push for the tender list when they’re not even thinking about it yet. That gets people’s backs up, and it makes you look unprofessional. What you’re looking for is the window of opportunity when they do start looking at the tender list, so that you can get in touch at the right moment. That might be just two or three weeks out of a four or five month pre-construction process.

The second reason is that if you talk to an architect, and then you phone back later and find that it’s still delayed, that’s offers you still more opportunities to talk and build relationship. It’s all building friendship and relationship from the start, which you wouldn’t have had opportunity to do if you came in later. Good sales professionals know that a chance to talk to an architect is never wasted. You may discover that the project you were after has been delayed, but that they have other jobs that are more advanced that may be of interest.

Another compelling reason to get in early is that if you go after a job and it gets held up for months and months in planning – if there are problems with neighbours or something – it’s very easy to drop a good scheme too early. What we’ve found is that if you’ve got your eye on a good job and you’re patient enough to track it for six, nine, twelve months even, very often you’re the last builder standing when it finally gets approval. In the meantime, you’ll have built up a lot of good will by hanging in there, you’ll have had plenty of opportunities to talk, and your stickability will stand you in good stead.

Yes, this takes time, which is why I began by asking how keen you are on the job. You can’t go in early and chase everything, so a lot of this comes down to good targeting in the first place. Use market intelligence wisely, find your best business, and choose the right jobs to chase.

Don’t be shy about getting in touch APT in the early stages of the process. You have nothing to lose from getting an early non obligatory quote.

add value property loft conversion

Add value to your property with a Loft Conversion

In terms of home improvements, the loft conversion has been an ever-present in houses all over London for the best part of 40 years. To this day, they offer homeowners the easiest solution in adding real value to a property, and can fetch up to 20% more on the housing market if well executed. However, a poor loft conversion can actually negatively impact the value of a property, and can also compromise safety.

Luckily, the loft conversion is so synonymous with London, that most reputable renovation companies have vast experience in undertaking these projects. APT Renovation is one such company that carries out many loft conversions, particularly in Central and South West London, where converted lofts can be sighted more so than anywhere else in the capital. “As the housing crisis worsens and property prices continue to soar, we are now doing more loft conversions than ever before”, explains director, Andi Pepaj.

The issue is that many homeowners are actually content where they are in London, but need more liveable space. This is where a loft conversion can significantly change the dynamics of a household, and pave the way for new bedrooms and en-suites. With a loft conversion, a standard two-bedroom property can be transformed into a four-bedroom, which is especially ideal for growing families. They are not limited to just bedrooms though, as many people have renovated their loft into areas of relaxation, entertainment, cinema rooms and even mini office spaces.

In boroughs like Hammersmith & Fulham,  Lambeth, Merton, Wandsworth, Kingston, Richmond, Kensington & Chelsea, nearly half of the properties have benefited from a loft conversion of some sort. Not only are they becoming more prevalent, but they are also becoming far more ambitious in design and functionality. Gone are the days of generic colour schemes and uninspiring layouts, loft conversions are now often highly refined and finished in immaculate style.

Natural light is a key feature in any loft, making it the brightest area of the house, particularly when skylight windows allow the sunshine to pour in at the first opportunity, weather permitting. Not only do Velux windows ensure privacy and look the part, they also provide a seamless transition between the interior and exterior. This abundance of brightness is a godsend for Architectural Designers who are continuing to incorporate natural light into their contemporary designs.

With most other home improvements, you will not be able to stay in your home while works are ongoing. With a loft conversion however, you can avert any extra costs and inconvenience by staying put. For many loft conversions, you won’t need to get planning permission and there’s a 50m³ threshold (40m³ for terraced houses) for extending the roof space. In fact, planning permission will only be required if the loft extends outwards and creates considerable structural change to the building.

The type of loft conversion that you can get varies on a few factors like how old and what kind of property it is, the layout of the roof, building regulations and of course, your budget and personal preference. A standard interior loft conversion is easily the most straightforward as the original structure is not modified at all. Instead, the space is insulated, Velux windows are fitted in, and the redundant space is renovated into a completely habitable area. This type of conversion is perfect for lofts that already have high ceilings.

If your property has low ceilings and the floorspace is lacking, a Dormer loft conversion is a great way to boost the loft’s floor capacity as well as the head-height, as the extension is fitted in from the outside and extends vertically from the plane of a sloped roof. Dormer windows are usually fitted in to add even more roominess, as they are positioned vertically directly in the slope, adding more height. Some may consider the Dormer conversion not as pleasing on the eye as the other types, but for those craving flat walls, flat ceilings and more space, it represents the best value for money.

In the rare occasion that planning permission or a conservation area prohibits the construction of a rear Dormer, then a Mansard conversion is a viable alternative. A Mansard is generally fitted onto the rear of a property, and converts the sloped roof to 72 degrees, which is close enough to being flat. This is because councils regard this angle as technically still being a roof, rather than a wall.

For detached and semi-detached properties, a Hip-to-Gable conversion can boost space in a loft by replacing the sloped roof with a straight wall, reaching the same height as the ridge. The conversion can result in enough options to create room for a new lounge area, a place of study or a play area. If your property’s roof is sloped on both sides, then it is also possible to get a double Hip-to-Gable, resulting in double the amount of potential space.

The average price of a loft conversion is roughly £15,000 and can range from around £7,000 to £30,000, depending on the scale of the project. APT Renovation recently designed and fitted in a spectacular new loft in Racton Road, Fulham, complete with gorgeous skylight windows and a beautiful en-suite bathroom with glass elements. Courtesy of their bespoke joinery, APT were also able to craft a number of made-to-measure fixtures, including wardrobes and shelving on the walls. The client, Janice, paid less than £38,000 on the works, and the property has now seen its value increase by £94,000.

It’s worth remembering that regardless of how much more value a loft conversion adds onto a property, it will still make more financial sense rather than jumping ship and buying a new house.  Because of the high quality nature of these renovations, homeowners are becoming more and more infatuated with their lofts. The loft conversion remains the most valuable and efficient way to improve the average London home, and as Andi Pepaj notes; “many people are now designating their loft as the master bedroom in the house, rather than just a room for the kids or guests”.

building-site1

Deciding where to live during extensive building works

building-site
Should you stay or should you go?

Let’s start with temporary accommodation.

Money spent on temporary accommodation can be beneficial if the cost is not extortionately high. The ease of the situation depends on your personal situation.

Sad but true, abundant funds allocated for the purpose can make things so much simpler. 

However, not all of us are on loose budgets, so for those who are on restricted budgets we recommend that even before you start the building process you consider who is involved and how they might be effected.

An off-site work sanctuary can be the best option

If it’s only you in the house, then you are more likely to have a realistic sense about which route is right for you. With a family, there’s a lot more to balance and a lot more at stake!

If you are considering  temporary accommodation the price and location are at the heart of the decision so take your time.

One thing to remember is that you can live on site if you really, really had to, so there isn’t really any pressure to find temporary accommodation as soon as possible. So its strongly advised that you find the best bargain deal on monthly outgoings available. 

Don’t forget that you must consider the proximity to work, schools and most importantly your building site.

You need to weigh up how long you will be living in temporary accommodation and add extra time as a contingency plan too. 

From our experience the most well thought out projects still overrun. So don’t be surprised if you find yourself living in your temporary accommodation for double or triple the time you originally had in mind.

So what are the benefits of staying in the fray & living onsite? 

One advantage is living onsite minimises the disruption one may face. 

When it comes down your personal belongings, the load doesn’t need to be removed or put into storage, however the extent of this depends on your space.

Storage vaults can be handy depending on your situation

If you decide to keep your valuable items stored in an unused room or recess within the worked on building be sure to further cover & enclose your belongings away from the room environment.

 As even though the room may be locked and shut off, dust has a nasty habit of getting through the cracks & nooks so take extra preventative measures. 

Last but not least the main advantage is the money savings. Money expenditure that you escape by not renting will leave you better pocketed after and can go towards further financing the house project.

Moving into a rental property

Although this can be a little disruptive, involving you moving twice – once to the rented accommodation and then again into your new build home. 

Private-rented-property-licensing
Private rented property licensing

Once you’re settled the comfort by far exceeds living on or close to a site. 

Money depending, you can pick and choose a sanctuary that provides a level of comfort during the build. Also there is the element of psychological tranquility where you have a place to reset & separate yourself. A place where you can detach from the cement, plaster & volatile building adhesive smells.

The obvious downside here is that money is going out on a monthly basis and if your project becomes significantly delayed this will soon add up.

Moving in with with family or friends

Potentially this option could save you a lot of money. However, it really comes down to how strong that relationship is with the people you impose upon.

Family-home
Moving in with family & friends can be a real cost saver

If the house is large enough then maybe there is room to have your own space. Such cases are very fortunate situations to be in however, there will still be that continuous subliminal self courteous element of being on your best behavior!

Other things to consider is the distance to your plot so travel will then need to be taken into account. There is also the fact that if there are delays you can soon out stay your welcome then run the risk danger of damaging your relation relationship with the hosts.

When is the best time move?

In many respects, you actually do want to leave this to the last minute! Nobody wants to compromise their living environment until they have to.

In reality it is a balance. You don’t want the stress of needing to pay bills and not have the cash flow. So you need to weigh up and plan for unforeseen circumstances before deciding when to move. 

things-to-do

Things to do this weekend in London

Things to do in London this weekend 15th & 16th June.

APT Renovation have designed and remodelled homes all around London especially the South West this gives us the expertise to know the great hangout around the capital

Greenwich Book
Get stuck into Greenwich Book Festival

GREENWICH BOOK FEST: The University of Greenwich brings a flurry of authors, playwrights and other literary figures together for Greenwich Book Festival, which begins today. Plenty of events throughout the festival are free, including talks and book launches, and there are also a few children’s events hosted at the venue too.  13-16 June

Marylebone Summer Festival

SUMMER FESTIVAL: Occurring for only two days, the Marylebone Summer Festival takes place over the Marylebone Village — take note that there will be several road closures in place around the event. The programme is family-friendly, includes live music from two different stages, and a plethora of market stalls. Paddington Street Gardens (Marylebone), free entry, just turn up, 15-16 June

BALHAM LITERARY FESTIVAL: We welcome book lovers, to the Balham Literary Festival, This is located a stones throw from APT Renovation’s offices. The festival consists of a 12-day event that features authors such as Yara Rodrigues Fowler.  13-25 June

CURATOR TOUR: Find out more about the legacy of graphic designer Abram Games, on this curator-led tour of the current exhibition about his work. He produced designs for the government in his role as ‘Official War Poster Artist’ during the second world war, drawing on his own experiences as a soldier, as well as his Jewish heritage, and the political situation at the time. National Army Museum (Chelsea), £10.50/£9.50, book ahead, 11am

Enjoy a vibrant orchestra performance in a car park

CAR PARK ORCHESTRA: Ever seen an orchestra in a car park? If not tonight is your chance thanks to The Multi-Story Orchestra. Choral and orchestral performers showcase classical music, as well as new choir pieces created by singers from St Mary Magdalene & Kender primary schools. Book ahead if Possible, 6.30pm-7.30pm 14th June

FITZROVIA WALK: The tour guide Laurence combines his expert subjects of science and history in a well documented guided tour about the past discoveries in the Fitzrovia area. Lasting two hours, you have a chance to hear about second world war, chemical complexities, forensic pathology, and a little ‘gentle adult content’ thrown in. Warren Street station 14th June 6.30pm-8.30pm

Enjoy comedy in an open-air courtyard

PRIDE COMEDY: The Loud, proud and established LGBTQ+ comedians take to the stage for a Pride comedy special. Robert White, Iszi Lawrence, Michael Eldridge and Katie Price are on the line-up. Theatre Deli (Broadgate) book ahead if possible 14th June 8pm-10pm