On the face of it, planning a home extension is easy. All it takes is a little imagination and the knowledge of where to go for help. Furthermore, in the age of the internet and phone apps being readily available for anything and everything, questions like ‘how much does an extension cost’ can be answered by Siri or Alexa in seconds, while online extension calculators are available to do all the complicated mathematics for you.
As most of us know though, technology and the word on the web cannot always be completely trusted and taken for heresay. The total that your on-screen calculator tells you your extension will cost can often be well wide of the mark, as unexpected charges and costs related to the purchasing of features mount up and blow budget.
Naturally, when most people begin planning their home renovation and what their new loft conversion or kitchen extension will look like, they dream of filling their space with the optimum level of sunlight and making the room as comfortable as possible. This, many people feel, can only be made possible with VELUX or FAKRO. But this is not so.
While VELUX and FAKRO deservedly sit at the top of the roof window market and building your home improvements around VELUX Extensions is without doubt an attractive option, if you are on a tighter budget it can pay to shop around a bit for windows that offer a lot of the same benefits and aesthetic appeal as their better-known counterparts, but at a more affordable price. Saving money on your windows can help bring down the cost of building an extension by hundreds of pounds, increasing the chances of you staying within budget.
Here are a few ideas and tips on creating a show-stopping extension that will save you a few pennies:
Cheap Roof Windows- Centre Pivot
Two high quality roof window brands that can save you large amounts of significant money are RoofLITE and ECO+.
For our smallest size of manual centre pivot window (55x78cm), RoofLITE’s pine roof window will set you back only £99, reduced to £83 per window when purchasing a pair. This is nearly half of the price other windows of the same size. Though the white paint model is slightly more expensive at £123, this is still far below the average cost of a roof window of this size and performance.
Nothing is lost on quality with this cheaper option either. RoofLITE’s double-glazed pine window is extremely thermally efficient with a 24mm argon-filled space between the panes than reduce heat loss in the colder months.
For slightly more money (£99.95), upwardly mobile roof window brand ECO+ has a manual pine window available at the smaller size of 47x78cm. Do not let the low price of this roof window fool you though, as a 1.2 W/m²K U-value and unique weatherseal make this a solid, value-for-money choice for home extensions.
For triple-glazed windows, ECO+ roof windows are almost £100 less than other brands and come with the option to upgrade to a zinc or cooper finish, a customisation unique to ECO+.
Cheap Roof Windows- Top Hung
Like with centre pivot windows, there are budget-friendly options on the market that are some of the best performing skylights available. Once again, RoofLITE has a pocket-friendly window ideal for most types of home extension.
A 78x98cm window from RoofLITE will cost you only £180- saving you near £100 on the same size window from other manufacturers. If you are looking at putting together a combination of roof windows or are looking at spreading roof windows around your roof to enhance light transmission, buying three of RoofLITE’s windows could save you a whopping £200 on like-for-like equivalents.
RoofLITE windows come in a top-third opening style in which not all the frame leaves the room. The top-third opening style does not cause any obstruction to you enjoying the views, however, as the frame is located near the top of the opening, leaving you more than enough headroom. In addition to this, all of RoofLITE's top-third windows are suitable as a means of escape window.
ECO+ is a rapidly rising roof window brand whose flat glass rooflights are one of the best value for money models on the market. The 60x60cm ECO+ flat glass rooflight can be purchased at only £352, significantly cheaper than flat glass windows from more established manufacturers. This size model can be updated to eletric operation or fitted with either switch glass or multi LED for an additional cost.
For an even lower price that beggars belief, the popular 45x85cm rooflight is available for only £275. Unsurprisingly, this rooflight sells out quick every time it is in stock, so be sure to take advantage of this low price by pre-ordering yours now. If you want to spread light around the room, purchasing three of the ECO+ 45x85cm rooflight comes with a generous discount that reduces the price of each window to £225.
Another affordable flat glass rooflight alternative comes from Signature. Though Signature’s 60x60cm flat glass rooflight is slightly pricier than the ECO+ model, Signature’s aesthetically-pleasing flat glass rooflights are available in five different finishing colours. The 60x60cm Signature rooflight also comes with obscure glazing for no additional cost.
Offering great value for money on their sun tunnels is Czech Republic-based manufacturer, Lightway. Not only do Lightway produce sun tunnels designed to bring sunlight to the darkest corners of residential and commercial buildings, but it does so in style, with the external dome of all Lightway products made of high quality Bohemian crystal.
The far-reaching performance of Lightway sun tunnels makes them an ideal and affordable choice for basement extensions, with a through wall option available to allow direct sunlight into even harder to reach spaces.
Though all this might make the Lightway sun tunnel sound like an expensive piece of kit, the most surprising element of these sun tunnels is their price. Lightway sun tunnels for flat roofs begin at £135, with a larger size available at £175. Prices for pitched roof sun tunnels start from £170.
REAL Aluminium Package Deal
If it more than just roof windows or rooflights you are looking to save money on with your home extension, why not consider the brand new combo package available from REAL Aluminium.
Saving you 5% on the price of buying a REAL Aluminium rooflight, window and doors individually, this deal is ideal for kitchen extensions and single storey extensions, saving you hundreds of pounds.
For more on the brand and its products, visit the REAL Aluminium portal.
Please note: All prices correct on date of publication