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Kitchen Extension Ideas: Transform Your Home and Boost Your Property Value

Kitchen extension with skylight and marble island


Want to achieve a similar look in your kitchen? Book a consultation with Sam today.

Looking for kitchen extension ideas? You're definitely not alone. Kitchen extensions are one of the most popular home improvement projects in the UK, and for good reason. Not only do they completely transform your kitchen space, making it a more functional and enjoyable place to cook, gather, and entertain, but they can also significantly increase the value of your property. According to the Nationwide Building Society, a well-designed kitchen extension can add up to 25% to the value of your home [source: Nationwide Building Society]. That's a significant return on investment that can make a real difference when it comes time to sell.

Proof Positive: The Value Boost of Kitchen Extensions

Numerous studies have shown that kitchen extensions are a fantastic return on investment. A 2023 report by the Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors (RICS) found that kitchen extensions were the most popular home improvement project amongst UK homeowners, with 67% of respondents stating it to be a project they would consider [source: Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors]. This high level of interest translates to increased property value.  When buyers are looking for a new home, a modern and spacious kitchen is often high on their list of priorities. By extending your kitchen, you're creating a space that is more appealing to a wider range of potential buyers, and that can lead to a higher asking price and a quicker sale.

Kitchen Extension Ideas: Lighten Up

A key element to consider in your kitchen extension is natural light. Natural light makes a space feel bigger and more inviting, and skylights are a brilliant solution to achieve this.  They flood the room with sunshine, reducing reliance on artificial lighting and creating a more open and airy feel. Studies have shown that natural light can have a positive impact on our mood and well-being, so incorporating skylights into your kitchen extension can not only make the space look better but also feel better to spend time in. 

There are a variety of skylight options available, so you can choose one that best suits the style of your extension and your budget. Fixed skylights are a cost-effective option that provide a constant stream of natural light. Opening skylights allow for ventilation and can be a great way to let out hot air during the summer months. Consider incorporating rain sensors with opening skylights to automatically close them in case of bad weather.

Defining Spaces: Floor Levels and Clever Design

Open-plan kitchen extensions are a popular choice, creating a light and airy feel and allowing for a more sociable and interactive cooking experience. But creating designated areas within the larger space can be very effective. This can be achieved through a thoughtful layout that incorporates different floor levels. A raised platform for a dining area, for example, can subtly separate it from the kitchen workspace. This helps to define the space and create a more intimate feel for dining, while still maintaining a sense of connection with the main kitchen area.

Another way to define areas within an open-plan kitchen extension is through the use of flooring. Using different types of flooring materials in different zones can help to visually separate the space. For example, you might choose to use hard-wearing tiles in the kitchen area for easy cleaning, while opting for a warmer and more comfortable material like wood flooring in the dining area. 

Kitchen extension with window facing the backyard


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Conservatory or Orangery: Blending the Indoors with the Outdoors

If you're looking to truly connect your kitchen with the outdoors, consider a conservatory or orangery. These extensions offer a unique way to bring the beauty of your garden into your home and create a light-filled and versatile space.

Conservatories are constructed mostly of glass, offering panoramic views of your garden. The extensive use of glass creates a light and airy feel and allows you to enjoy the feeling of being outdoors even when you're inside. However, conservatories can become very hot in the summer and cold in the winter, so it's important to consider factors such as insulation and ventilation when planning your conservatory extension.

Orangeries offer a more permanent extension option that can be used year-round. They are typically constructed with a solid roof and large windows, providing better insulation than a conservatory. This makes them a more comfortable space to use throughout the year.  Orangeries are a great option for creating a garden room that can be used for dining, relaxing, or even as a home office.

Kitchen extension with modern lighting and wooden furniture


Need help choosing the right design for your kitchen? Ask Jen today.

Planning is Key: Don't Rush into Your Dream Kitchen

While the idea of a brand-new kitchen is exciting, don't underestimate the importance of planning. Sketch some initial ideas to get a feel for the layout and functionality of your dream kitchen. There are many online resources and design tools available to help you with this initial planning stage. 

Once you have a rough idea of what you want, it's important to research materials and costs. Kitchen renovations can be expensive, so it's important to set a realistic budget and get quotes from different contractors before making any final decisions. 

Here are some additional things to consider during the planning stage:

  • Building regulations: There are a number of building regulations that you will need to comply with when building a kitchen extension. It's important to research these regulations and understand what they mean for your project. You may need to hire a building surveyor or architect to help you navigate the planning process.

  • Permitted development rights: In some cases, you may be able to build a kitchen extension without the need for full planning permission if you stay within certain size and design limitations. These are known as permitted development rights. It's important to check with your local council to see if you qualify for permitted development rights for your extension project.

Consider Seeking Professional Help

While it's possible to take on a kitchen extension project yourself, it's often advisable to seek professional help from an architect or designer. An experienced professional can help you with the following:

  • Creating a functional and stylish layout: A well-designed kitchen extension should be both beautiful and practical. An architect or designer can help you create a layout that meets your needs and makes the most of the space available.

  • Obtaining planning permission: The planning process can be complex, but an architect or designer can help you navigate the system and ensure that your extension meets all the necessary regulations.

  • Finding reputable contractors: An architect or designer will have a network of contacts and can help you find qualified and reputable contractors to carry out the work.

Kitchen extension with glass rood and marble island


Need help to design your kitchen extension? Book a consultation with Kenny today.

Kitchen Layouts: Choosing the Perfect Fit for Your Extension

The layout of your kitchen extension will play a huge role in its functionality and overall feel. Here's a breakdown of some popular kitchen layouts to consider for your project:

  • L-Shaped Kitchen: This is a classic and versatile layout that works well in a variety of spaces. It maximises two adjoining walls, creating a clear work triangle and offering plenty of counter space and storage. L-shaped kitchens are ideal for open-plan extensions where you want to define the cooking area without sacrificing flow.

  • U-Shaped Kitchen: U-shaped kitchens are perfect for maximising storage and workspace. They utilise three walls, creating an efficient workflow and offering ample counter space for prepping, cooking, and serving. However, U-shaped kitchens can feel slightly cramped in smaller extensions, so consider the size and dimensions of your space before opting for this layout.

  • Galley Kitchen: A galley kitchen features cabinetry and appliances positioned along two parallel walls, with a walkway in between. This layout is ideal for smaller extensions or narrow spaces. While galley kitchens can be efficient, they can also feel restrictive, so it's important to ensure there's enough space for two people to move around comfortably.

  • Peninsula Kitchen: A peninsula kitchen is essentially an L-shaped layout with an additional counter that extends out into the room. This creates a more defined cooking area and can provide additional seating or workspace. Peninsula kitchens are a great option for creating a sociable and interactive cooking environment.

  • Square Kitchen: Square kitchens are a unique choice that can work well in open-plan extensions. They offer a central workspace with cabinetry and appliances arranged around the perimeter. This layout can be very efficient and allows for easy access from all sides. However, square kitchens may not be suitable for smaller spaces, as they can feel a bit tight and leave limited floor space.

Matching the Style: A Cohesive Look

A kitchen extension should complement the existing style of your house. A modern extension of a traditional home can look out of place and detract from the overall aesthetics of the property. Here are some tips for ensuring your kitchen extension blends seamlessly with the rest of your home:

  • Research period-appropriate features: If you live in a period property, take some time to research the architectural style of your home. This will help you choose materials and features for your extension that are in keeping with the original design.

  • Use complementary materials: Consider the materials that have been used in the construction of your existing home and choose materials for your extension that complement them. For example, if your house is built from red brick, you might choose to use a similar brick for your extension.

  • Maintain a consistent roofline: The roofline of your extension should be in keeping with the roofline of your existing home. This will help to create a cohesive look overall.

Creating a Thoughtful Layout and Focal Point

Creating a well-thought-out layout is essential for a functional kitchen extension. When planning your layout, consider the following:

  • The work triangle: The work triangle refers to the three most important areas of a kitchen: the sink, the hob, and the refrigerator. These three areas should be positioned in close proximity to each other to create an efficient workflow.

  • Storage: Kitchens are notorious for clutter, so it's important to include plenty of storage space in your extension. Consider a mix of base units, wall units, and pantry units to accommodate all your kitchen essentials.

  • Appliance placement: Think about where you will be placing your appliances and ensure there is adequate space for them to function properly.  Allow enough clearance around ovens and hobs for safety reasons.

Focal Point and Flow: A Kitchen Made for Living

Incorporating a central focal point can help to define the space and create a sense of visual interest. A large kitchen island is a popular choice for kitchen extensions. Kitchen islands offer valuable workspace, additional storage, and can even incorporate seating for a casual breakfast bar or entertaining area.

Another important consideration is the flow of movement within the kitchen. You don't want to be constantly backtracking as you cook. Think about the different tasks you will be carrying out in the kitchen and ensure the layout allows for a smooth and efficient workflow. 

Kitchen extension with red door and glass roof


Do you want a similar look for your kitchen extension? Chat with Emily today.

Our Final Thoughts

A kitchen extension is a fantastic investment that can add value, space, and functionality to your home. By carefully planning your project and incorporating some of these ideas, you can create a dream kitchen that's both beautiful and practical.  Remember to take your time with the planning stage, research your options thoroughly, and don't be afraid to seek professional help. With careful planning and execution, your kitchen extension can be the heart of your home for years to come.

Need help with your kitchen extension? Book one of our Kitchen Design Gurus for a 30-minute video call. Transforming your home into a space you love shouldn't be a daunting task. With HiiGuru you can save time, avoid costly mistakes and bring your goals to life with experts by your side.


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