Contemporary Conservatories VS Traditional Conservatories

Conservatories fall into two broad categories: contemporary & traditional. The first step in choosing a conservatory is knowing which styles are available to you.

You will be presented with a number of conservatory styles when visiting a conservatory company so you won’t be left without choice.

But which conservatory do you choose? More importantly, which conservatory will add value to your home?

This guide explores the wide choice of conservatory designs currently on the market. Discover the styles on offer and how choose a conservatory which will compliment both your lifestyle and home.

Which Conservatory?

Contemporary Conservatories VS Traditional ConservatoriesSo which conservatory style is best suited to your home? Generally, modern properties benefit from contemporary conservatories.However, there are exceptions to this rule.

A traditional conservatory can provide an element of grandiosity to the more contemporary home. Traditional conservatories will soften your property’s modern aesthetics, providing a touch of charm.

Period style houses are usually paired with traditional conservatories. The traditional conservatory will compliment an older home, enhancing its classic appearance.

Again, this doesn’t mean you are limited when it comes to choice.Many home owners who have period style properties are inspired by the modern look. A modern conservatory within a traditional home can provide a complementary balance.

You will also need to choose a style which can accommodate for your style of property. Those with small gardens will need to give much thought to the style and shape of their conservatory.

Traditional Conservatories

Traditional conservatories are mostly inspired by late historical structures. If you are after a classic and timeless appearance, then these conservatory designs are ideal.

Period properties are known for retaining their original features which means modern conservatories can look out of place.

Inspired by popular architectural structures throughout the Victorian, Edwardian & Georgian period, traditional conservatories mirror their elegant structure.Traditional conservatories are designed to compliment old aesthetics so you can benefit from a modern development without compromising style.

In general, there is broad agreement on style terms between companies but always check with your supplier to make sure you share the same interpretation. You do not want your conservatory design to get lost in translation.

Traditional Conservatories

The Victorian Conservatory

Traditional Conservatories

Victorian conservatories are octagonal in shape and have many faceted fronts.

This style features a pitched roof and ornate ridges. This traditional style looks great amongst Victorian properties, seamlessly blending into the existing structure.

If you are lacking in space then the Victorian conservatory will be highly suited to your small garden. Its soft rounded edges are not imposing and instead allow for pathway access.

The Edwardian Conservatory

Traditional Conservatories

The Edwardian conservatory is symmetrical in structure and like the Victorian, it features a pitched roof.

This conservatory style is flat fronted however and provides more useable space thanks to its generous floor plan.

This traditional style can have lots of ornate detail and will compliment Edwardian properties greatly.

This style provides a light and airy feel due to its simple rectangular structure.

The Gable Conservatory

Traditional Conservatories

Gable conservatories feature a vertical front and steep pitched roof. Inspired by late Georgian architecture, the Gable conservatory is traditional in style.

Ornate detail combined with delicate finishing touches gives the Gable conservatory a stately feel.

Generally seen amongst stately homes, the Gable conservatory is an impressive structure.If you prefer an understated look then you can keep this style clean of fancy details. This way you can benefit from a contemporary feel.

Contemporary Conservatories

Contemporary conservatories are simplistic in design when compared to their traditional counterparts. These conservatories tend to have clean lines and pitched lean-to style roofs.

Square or rectangular in structure, contemporary conservatories are very spacious. These conservatories can be turned into small home offices, or even kitchen and diners.

Adaptable, contemporary conservatories suit a wide range of properties. Their design can be as unique as your specifications.

Contemporary Conservatories

The Lean-To Conservatory

Contemporary Conservatories

Possibly the most simple conservatory style out there, the lean-to conservatory features an unfussy rectangular structure with a single roof pitch.

This contemporary conservatory is suited to a wide range of properties. The lean-to conservatory can even be adapted to fit homes with small eaves.

Small homes such as cottages & bungalow will certainly benefit from the lean-to’s uncomplicated style. An affordable option, this conservatory is also perfect for those working to a budget.

The P-Shape Conservatory

Contemporary Conservatories

This contemporary conservatory is known as a combination conservatory. It combines two different conservatory styles in order to create a unique P structure.

A Victorian or Edwardian conservatory is usually teamed with a lean-to section in order to create this shape. Due to their size, these conservatories are best suited to big properties.

This combination conservatory ideally provides you with the use of two extra rooms.  Perfect for those looking to make the most out of their available space.

The Benefits of a Modern Conservatory

Contemporary ConservatoriesWhether you opt for a traditional or contemporary conservatory, the benefits of today’s modern conservatory are manifold.

A conservatory will:

  • Provide you with additional living space. Whether you fancy an extra bedroom,  storage room or living room, a conservatory provides with a number of options.
  • Increase the value of your home. This is one of the major benefits of adding a conservatory to your home. Conservatories are a fantastic selling point to potential buyers.
  • Provide a relaxing environment. If a family room sounds too busy then a conservatory could be your answer to a more calming environment. Escape to your conservatory when the rest of your household gets too much. The bright and airy atmosphere will provide a comfortable setting for you to relax.

Modern conservatories offer an unrivalled diversity of designs, with a wide range of shapes, colours and finishes. From traditional to contemporary, there is something for every home owner.

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Frequently Asked Conservatory Questions

In most instances the council tax will not increase on a property unless the additions another living quarter or self-contained annex. This means the addition of a conservatory should not increase the council tax payable on a property. To be absolutely certain you can always check the government's website which gives advice on council tax.
The main difference between a conservatory and an orangery is how the roof is constructed. A conservatory roof is over 75% glazed whereas an orangery roof has less than this amount. A conservatory also has over half of its wall space glazed whereas an orangery can include more brickwork than this.
Yes, you can put a conservatory on the front of your house. This is because conservatories come under the category of a permitted development. As such in most instances you do not need planning permission. This applies if the area surrounding the original house is not more than 50% covered by other buildings or additions.
A glass conservatory can cost as little as £4,000 depending on the style you choose and the amount of building work you need. Larger glass conservatories with more building work can cost £20,000 and above. If you know the conservatory style and size you need or just want an idea of cost our online conservatory cost calculator will give you a guide price.
A Loggia Conservatory can cost about £15,000 to £20,000 for an average size. The Loggia Conservatory is a popular style but can be more expensive than traditional conservatory styles.
A Loggia Conservatory can cost between 20% to 50% more than a uPVC conservatory. It is a good idea to shop around for quotes in order to get a competitive conservatory cost.
The average conservatory cost begins in the region of £4,000 to £5,000. This will be for a reasonably small and basic conservatory. The cost of a conservatory can be as much as £40,000 to £50,000. This will be a large conservatory, fully fitted with all building work included. As this is a wide spread it is a good idea to know your style and size in order to get an average conservatory cost.
There are many ways of gaining temperature control. Conservatory blinds, ventilating windows, cooling film and air conditioning to name a few. You might also want to consider replacing your conservatory roof with a tiled or solid design.
There are many ways of keeping your conservatory warm in the Winter. If you have a small conservatory then an electric heater will suffice but those with bigger conservatories may want to look into installing underfloor heating.
Glazing is also very important in a conservatory. Most heat can be lost through glass so ensure your conservatory glazing is thermally efficient. You can also tackle draughts or cold spots by installing conservatory blinds.
This will largely depend on your location. You will find that certain areas have different setbacks based on the use of the building. We recommend that you check with your local council or take a look at the Goverment's Planning Portal.

You must notify your neighbour if you want to:

- Build on or at the boundary of your 2 properties - Work on an existing party wall or party structure - Dig below and near to the foundation level of their property
Replacing your conservatory roof can indeed make your conservatory warmer however, this will depend on the type of roof you choose. A solid or tiled conservatory roof will offer greater insulation than a plastic or glazed roof.
A solid roof can be put on a conservatory. There are many solid conservatory roof designs available - just ask your chosen installer for a recommendation. The majority of new-build conservatories with a solid, tiled or glazed roof will not require planning permission. They are covered under what is known as 'permitted development'. However, building regulations will apply if you want to build an extension.
When it comes to your home improvement, it's important to have all the necessary legal documentation. The installation of a conservatory, orangery or porch does not require a FENSA registration form.
The average life span of a uPVC conservatory is largely dependent on the quality of materials and build. Typically, a uPVC frame can last up to 25 years but some can last for decades ensuring they are well maintained.
Planning permissions used to say that a certain percentage of roofing must be translucent in order for a conservatory to be exempt from planning permission. Changes to building regulations however, now means that you may not require planning permission for roof replacement.
Swapping your existing conservarory roof for a tiled or solid roof replacement can be done without needing to file for planning permission. Planning permission may be required however, if the height of your extension is changed following completion.
A conservatory is defined as a 'building that has no less than 75% of its roof area made of translucent material and no less than 50% of its total wall area made of glass.
It is possible to convert a conservatory to an orangery but it isn't a simple process. A surveyor will need to come out and assess your property and conservatory to see if it is at first , feasible.
Both extensions and orangeries often require planning permission and in order to satisfy requirements, a new structure will have to be built.
If a conservatory is within two metres of a boundary, a conservatory should not be higher than three metres. It must also not extend beyond the rear wall of the original house by more than 3m if an attached house or by 4m if a detached house.
For construction work to begin a trench will need to be excavated to a minimum depth of 600mm. A conservatory needs footings just as much as any extension does.
Solid ground will need to found first and needs to be accepted by Building Control as being a minimum of 1 metre in standard conditions.
Foundations will need to be dug and because conservatories are lightweight in structure, their foundation loads are usually quite low. This can often lead to the notion that shallow foundations are satisfactory however, shallow foundations are more susceptible to subsidence.

Conservatories that are built with foundations shallower than the Building Regulations advise, are likely to encounter problems.

Building Regulations state:

A2. The building shall be constructed so that ground movement caused by :-
(a) swelling, shrinkage or freezing of the subsoil; or
(b) land-slip or subsidence (other than subsidence arising from shrinkage), in so far as the risk can be reasonably foreseen, will not impair the stability of any part of the building
Usually, there are no planning requirements when it comes to building a conservatory to a bungalow. However, the conservatory will be subject to certain conditions so be sure to check with your local building authority or with the Government's Planning Portal to ensure your conservatory remains within these guidelines.
Any structure that is built as an extra living quarter will require its own council tax band, even if it shares facilities with the main dwelling. If you're adding a conservatory then council tax won't be an issue however if you're adding a whole new annex, then your council tax is likely to change.
When is a conservatory not a conservatory? In order for a structure to remain a permitted development (a conservatory), the build needs to comply with a number of rules. A conservatory must be ground level, must not be more than 30m2, must be thermally separated from the original building, have its own heating and have glazing in critical zones that meet Part Nof the building regulations.
An extension refers to an additional structure that is anatomically in-keeping with your main property. An extension often requires planning permission unless it is classified as permitted development and is built with opaque cavity walls and brick-based foundations. Extensions are a big home improvement and investment, needing the work of an architect.
Conservatories or glazed extensions are perfect for those looking to add extra space on a budget. Typically, they are less of a logistical strain and in most cases do not require planning permission,
A conservatory can be built under permitted development rights, not needing an application for planning permission. A conservatory however is subject to the limits and conditions listed here. Building a conservatory onto an extension however, will be subject to different conditions. In some cases and under the permitted development regulations, you cannot attach an extension to an already extended part of a dwelling. It has to be attached to the original walls of the dwelling house.
A well built conservatory can increase your home's value by up to 7% . A conservatory can add lots of value to your home, increasing monetary value and making it much more attractive to a prospective buyer. A conservatory extension will change how you live and interact in your home for the better, enhancing space and comfort. It will certainly put your home above other properties too, especially when it comes to attracting a potential buyer. Read more here.
Conservatories are generally much cheaper than a single-storey extension of the same size. The price difference will largely depend on size and how complex the structure is to build, as well as the quality of materials.
The cost of a conservatory extension can range from £6,000 to £20,000. Compared to a full on extension, it is a much more affordable way of increasing space within your property. A full blown extension can cost up to £30,000. An extension is priced on average, per square metre.
A conservatory or single-story extension can be built without planning permission if: It's a maximum of 4 metres high or 3 metres high, within 2 metres of a boundary and the conservatory or extension does not cover more than half of the garden.
From now until 2019, you can extend outwards by up to 8 metres for detached homes and 6 metres for other property types. For this, instead of applying for planning permission you will need to undergo a Neighbour Consultation Scheme.
Fully fitted conservatory prices start from around £4,000 for a small room up to £20,000 + for bigger, more bespoke rooms. To get an idea on how much you can expect to pay for your new conservatory, you can use our conservatory cost calculator. It will provide you with a unique online guide price based purely on your own specifications. Fully fitted conservatory prices will vary from company to company and is also very much dependent on design.
In most circumstances, building regulations tend to apply when you build a new extension or a very large structure to your property. However, most of the time, conservatories are exempt from building regulations when they are erected at ground level and the floor surface areas is less than 30 square metres.
The average life expectancy of a conservatory depends on the quality of materials used as well as the installer. Generally speaking a conservatory built with uPVC window and door frames can last up to 25 - 30 years.
Conservatory extension costs are far more affordable than a full-blown extension. A conservatory costs anything starting from £3,000 - £4,000 deadening on final styles and specifications. On the other hand, full build house extensions can cost anything from £20,000 right up to £100,000+! Generally speaking extensions are priced on average, per square metre.
It is possible to build either a conservatory or a single-storey extension without gaining planning permission if: firstly, it has a maximum height of 4 metres or 3 metres high if situated within 2 metres of an existing boundary. The conservatory itself does not exceed over half the size of the garden.
The average cost to build a conservatory varies depending on many factors such as: size, style, materials, roof, number of windows and doors, building work requirements and internal works e.g. lightning, plastering, finishing etc. On average, costs for smaller type conservatories such as the lean-to conservatory style will start from around £3000 - £4000 including VAT and installation (subject to final requirements and technical survey).
Yes you can! Whatever the shape of your existing conservatory, you can be sure that there is a solid roof equivalent to meet your exacting requirements.
Changing roofs from a polycarbonate to a solid roof means that building regulations will apply. Your chosen installer will be able to answer any questions you have and help with any red tape such as contacting local authorities to resolve building regulations compliance.
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