If you’re considering moving to The Cotswolds, taking on a project, or perhaps you’re in the position of owning property you’re thinking of converting, a barn conversion could make the ideal home for you. Their popularity in The Cotswolds has soared in the past decade, with many people enjoying the crosswire of traditional and contemporary style that they offer.
Often featuring high arched ceilings and large wooden doors, barns present luxuriously open spaces and room in a way that few other houses available within the same budget can. However, these key characteristics have also led to misconceptions about the efficiency of barn conversions, the main concern being the cost of heating such a spacious building. In contrast, many barn conversion buyers or developers are interested in these properties because of their capacity to offer a greener life-style. So how exactly can you get the best out a barn conversion? Make it as cost and eco efficient as possible? Here’s the best tips on how to have a stylish and sustainable home:
Heating – While barns are not renowned for their warmth, there are plenty of cost effective ways to keep your home cosy without an enormous bill. Underfloor heating is one popular way to heat a barn, as it distributes heat more evenly than radiators and requires the water to be of lower heat, meaning it’s more efficient. The installation of a ceramic, wood-burning stove is also something to consider, as the energy produced over a two hour period of burning is then released over twenty-four hours, while the burner is always working on a maximum efficiency of 90%. Other ideas such as having the majority of windows on the south-facing side of the house, and installing a heat recovery ventilation system, will also maximise heat retention.
Water – Recycled rainwater that is supplied directly into the house can be used in washing-machines and toilets, as well as outdoors for washing cars and watering gardens. Used this way, rainwater can help to save up to 50% of household water use. (See Image)
Insulation – Many of the best insulators are synthetic materials, whose production is particularly harsh on the environment. Choose your material wisely for this crucial part of keeping your home warm, with cellulose, recycled polyester blankets, wood fibreboard and rope made of flax or sheep wool all being efficient and more environmentally friendly alternatives.
So if you’re looking for a unique, period home, often rurally situated, and featuring all the advantages and comforts of a modern new build – look no further. With their eco potential, these are the homes of the future, saving you on bills as well as your carbon footprint.
For information on Barn Conversions completed by GB Dibden please click here.