When Katie purchased the four bedroom, two bathroom property, it had been owned by a married couple for four decades, and had hardly been altered during that time. The interior was in serious need of an update, and the house also suffered from leaks and damp, particularly in the loft. However, located in a beautiful Georgian square, the best preserved in East London, the house presented a fantastic opportunity for someone to transform it from a unloved 70s time-warp into a beautiful, modern family home.
While the aim was to give the house all the amenities and characteristics that modern families expect, Katie was keen to retain and enhance aspects of the home’s period character on the inside. On the outside, the building’s listed status, along with its location in a conservation area, meant that very little could be altered. However, permission was granted for an extension of the basement level at the back of the house, providing an exciting opportunity to do something really creative.
The first stage of the project was to completely strip out the dated interior and the existing plumbing and wiring. This would allow the installation of a Megaflo water system to provide high-pressure hot water throughout the house, and electrical fittings which meet the most stringent of modern safety standards. In the basement, the floor plan was altered significantly. Separation walls were stripped out to form what would become the open-plan kitchen and dining area. To expand this even more, a rear extension was added, creating plenty of extra indoor space for entertaining, and the top of the extension was decked to allow it to be used as a large balcony, accessible from the living room.
The other major transformation took place in the loft, which was completely rebuilt in a contemporary style. The loft features a double bedroom and a separate bathroom. Rather than making it an en-suite like all of the other bathrooms in the house, it was decided to keep the access separate from the bedroom to allow guests to use it without impinging on anyone’s privacy. The bathtub has been fitted underneath a huge Velux window, providing a beautiful, tranquil space to relax while watching the clouds fly by.
The house was decorated throughout in white and neutral tones, to give it the bright, Scandinavian-inspired look so beloved by modern homeowners. However, key period features were either added or retained to keep the property’s Georgian feel. The original floorboards were sanded and re-stained on the ground and first floor, giving the home an antique feel. In the living room, there are two beautiful, newly installed Georgian fireplaces, while the plaster cornices are completely original. In the master bedroom, the two large refurbished period windows have been given wooden shutters to enhance the old-world appeal, and a third Georgian fireplace has been added. New plaster cornices were added to bring the look of the room into line with the ground floor. The second and third floors have a much simpler, more modern aesthetic, with soft grey carpet fitted throughout.
The house has been transformed into a brilliantly bright, comfortable and modern property, whilst enhancing its Georgian character on the ground and first floor. The most impressive part of the renovation, however, is unquestionably the new open-plan basement kitchen and dining room. The extension incorporates glass double doors which span the entire width of the house, while a large skylight set into the ceiling boosts the light even more. Another glass panel is set in the ceiling between the living room and kitchen.
The large basement and generously sized living room, combined with an extensive garden, mean the house has plenty of space to entertain guests. Meanwhile, as the property features four double bedrooms, each with a fully equipped bath or shower room, every member of the household enjoys considerable space and privacy.
Katie is delighted with how the project went, and has already found a family to rent out the property. She said that her build team’s work ethic and attention to detail were “exemplary”, and she praised the architects inventive use of glass to maximise the amount of natural light in the property and enhance the sense of space.
Landmark Lofts is part of the Landmark Group - the only group in London specialising in the project management of loft conversions, extensions and refurbishments to include a Chartered Building Company (CIOB), Chartered Architectural Practice (RIBA) and to be regulated by the Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors (RICS). The Landmark Group specialises in the project management of loft conversions, extensions and refurbishments.