News: Build us conservatories with new homes

A conservatory is the top optional extra according to a survey of over 2500 potential buyers of newly built homes.

Most people would be interested in adding a conservatory while their new home is being built with 23.2 % saying they would definitely want one. This rose to 78.9% saying they would definitely consider it when they were alerted to the VAT saving.

Business development director Glevum Conservatories, David Simpson said: "What is interesting is that the vast majority of people still don’t know that conservatories are VAT exempt on new homes which could save them £2000 or more compared to buying one later."

"It is astonishing that house builders are not promoting this financial saving to their customers, particularly as this survey indicates the level of demand which exists."

The survey discovered that attitudes to conservatories have changed little over the last 10 years with the main desire still being for somewhere to relax and entertain with family and friends, with 76.8% wanting to use their conservatory in this way.

The idea of it being a place for growing vines, peaches and other tender plants so favoured by the Victorians seems to have died out with only 1.3% of those questioned saying they would grow exotic plants

An increasing number of people though, are planning to use their conservatory as an office or a permanent dining room, freeing up other areas of their home and making full use of this relatively inexpensive extra floor space all year round. The survey found that over 40% wanted a choice of ceramic floor tiles along with 38.4% opting for blinds to combat the glare in summer and provide insulation in winter.

According to David Simpson the survey result which should make the major house builders sit up and listen is that 32.5% of the respondents would be more interested in buying a new home if they were offered the chance of having a conservatory, with 37.6% saying they would actively seek out a housebuilder who offered a choice of optional extras, including conservatories.

"Homebuyers on new estates are far more interested in using their garden space for leisure activities," he said, "and this survey reveals that a conservatory plays a big part in this. It seems that the patio set, the gas barbecue and the all-weather conservatory are the essentials of the modern British summer."

Glevum, based in Gloucestershire is one of the most experienced new-build conservatory specialists in the UK and has worked with Wimpey, Bryant, David Wilson and Westbury and Miller Homes in the Midlands, the South of England and South Wales.

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