Summer houses were originally considered to be homes in warm places where the gentry could retire to in the summer months. Now of course it is a small wooden house in the garden where one can kick back and relax in the warm weather. You may also see them in a larger, public gardens and parks where they provide shelter in from the warm sunshine. For this reason they are sometimes referred to as ‘sun houses’. As affluence grows, more and more people are finding that a well constructed wooden garden building is the perfect retreat from the hullaballoo of every day life. Some have gone so far as to make them a semi-permanent residence by adding all kind of goodies inside, from setees and TV’s to music systems and garden beds. A home from home that all of the family can enjoy.
Live the Nordic way!
In the Nordic countries like Norway and Sweden the term applies to a second home which could be a home away from home, such as a small cottage rather than a semi-permanent structure in the garden. As a virtual translation from those languages the buildings became known as summerhouses in English. In Denmark for example it is common to rent them out to tourists as an extra source of revenue. This trend is also catching on in the UK where some people have erected them at the side of their house or in the garden, accessible by a side gate, and rented them out on Airbnb. In these straightened times such activity can produce a very handy extra revenue stream with a relatively modest outlay.
A Revenue Stream?
If you consider that the average UK property is well over £230k and may produce a rental income of say £500 a month, you can see why a summer house which costs way less than 10% of that could, with the appropriate permissions, be rented out at £50+ per night!
Along with the traditional British Victorian summer houses, there are also versions in Minnesota in the US which were built in the late 19c century, such as the Thompson Summer House on Minnetonka beach. The oldest summer house still standing is an 18 century version built by the English landscape architect Capability Brown in in Warnford, Southampton, Hampshire. This historic building was built for Lord Clanricade as a bathhouse!
Whatever the origins or the use, you can have your very own version sitting pretty in your garden with the help of Beaver. WE just wanted to show you that you are in good company!
Many of our customers wish to use their garden buildings all year round. If that is you, then you will need to buy one of our insulated summer houses. It’s a fairly straightforward process but does involve some planning from the very beginning. There is of course a small incremental cost for having your building insulated which is from around £650, but please contact us first so we can quote properly.
The insulation properties of our summer house sheds varies enormously depending on the thickness of the wood used and whether there is insulation installed. Of course the best summer houses you can buy will have the thickest wood and will also be insulated but that is your choice, If you only want to use the building during the summer months to store garden machinery, tools and sports equipment then you might be quite happy with an un-insulated version. If you want the best though, go for the thickest wood coupled with floor and roof insulation. So what are the options?
28mm wall thickness – Recommend Insulation.
This is the thinnest wood which we use on the entry level range of Lugarde of summer houses. Whilst the wood thickness will provide some insulation, the building will be cold in the winter months. Even with a heater installed it will be very difficult to keep up the internal temperature when the temperature drops. It makes perfect sense to install wall, floor and roof insulation. The insulation comes in sheets (see above) which can be fitted along the internal walls, between the roof layers and between the joists in the floor. The result is quite invisible. The material used is a rigid polyisocyanurate (PIR) which has a low global warming potential. The beauty of this method is that as long as it is fitted along with double glazed windows and doors there will be no condensation and the interior will be able to be warmed to a constant temperature using an electric heater.
44mm Wall thickness – Insulation Optional/Recommended
The thicker wood used in the construction of the more expensive contemporary summer houses such as the Grand Six provides for much better insulation. It will not be 100% perfect for heat retention and if a thicker wood is required then you may be better with one of our bespoke log cabin buildings where we can go up to 70mm. With the far thicker wood, no insulation is required, so what we would say with the 44mm wood thickness is that although insulation is optional, we would definitely recommend it. When the 48mm wood is combined with internal wall insulation, couple with floor and ceiling the results can be pretty good. You could sit in the summer house on a winter’s day – you would still need maybe a 1kw heater on the larger buildings (speak to us for affordable options) but it would keep the internal space at an even temperature.
All of our summer houses come with double glazed doors and windows as standard. This is essential for keeping the heat in and for saftey reasons. You woudln’t want one of your children careering into a single glazed glass pane. the consequences could be tragic. Double glazed summer houses, along with good insulation and a quality electric heater represent the ultimate in quality. You will be able to use the building all year round for what every purpose you choose.
Although an insulated summerhouse costs more, the benefits are easily calculable. If you are going to invest in a building of this type then why limit its use to the summer months? Having good insulation coupled with double glazing and a heater gives you all year-round use. Check out the full range above and if you have any questions then don’t hesitate to call us or contact us. 01606 590609.
One of the most popular options is the corner summer house which fits neatly into the corner of any garden. These high-quality summer house sheds are constructed in exactly the same way as the traditional type but they emanate outwards from one one corner set, for the octagonal summer houses at 45 degrees. Nothing looks better than one of our nicely painted corner summer houses. They also have a myriad of uses.
These can either be open to the elements in the style of a small cricket pavilion or fully fitted out with double glazed windows and doors. Either way with a traditional shingle roof and an expert paint job, these corner summerhouses can look so pretty in the style of a traditional English country garden.
Uses of a Corner Summer House
When we think of these types of buildings we think of croquet on the lawn with a glass of Pimms, Brideshead Revisited, a large country house with one of these lovely wooden summer houses nestled in the corner of the garden A couple smooching at a family wedding, secret trysts as the warm summer sun beams down upon us. In reality, taking off the rose-tinted spectacles, they have far more practical uses and can be fully fitted out depending on the desired use. A home office , a studio for painting or other pastimes, or simply an extra space to store the lawnmower or other garden equipment!
Whatever your reason for choosing one of our summer houses we are with you every step of the way. Why not come and visit us at our showroom in Winsford, fill out the contact form so we can get in touch or give us a call today!
Whichever way you look at it as we launch into the 21st Century, outdoor living is now a well established ‘thing’. Whilst modern gardens are certainly not as large as they used to be, or as we would like!, there is always the opportunity to enhance them. Nothing gives a house that ‘English garden’ look more than a contemporary summer house sitting in the corner. Ours come with a wide variety of painting options.
We recommend the use of a breathable material such as Sadolin as your summer house paint. It is perfect for both the interior and exterior, has low odour and can give a beautiful satin finish.
There are a wide range of colour options from a clear varnish type finish (but without the sickly stickiness) to a full palette of bright and pastels to choose from. Some people consider that a modern summer house should be wood colour and only wood colour, rather like Henry Ford and his Model T – “Any colour as long as it’s black”. But in these modern times pretty much any colour goes as long as it complements your garden. There are so many garden makeover programs on TV these days that the inspiration is all around you. So why not live a little and experiment with colour?
Our expert fitters can guide you on some options. Many plump for one colour for the main body of the building with highlights for doors and window surrounds. It’s your choice so get creative. For interiors the choices are endless. If you have a wooden floor with a clear finish you may want to got for white walls to increase the brightness in the building, especially if you are using it as an office or similar workspace.
Modern summer houses demand to be used; they are organic and ‘move’ with the seasons. So make sure they have a great finish and consider repainting the outside every two to three years to keep them in top condition.