Though there are guidelines for room sizes when it comes to HMO licensing the most important thing is for a room to be functional. To make sure this is the case it is important to include furniture on the floor plans when you are building. There is, of course, nothing worse than having a third bedroom in a 3-bed property into which you can’t actually fit a bed.
Property Expert Series: Grant Erskine From Grant Erskine Architects
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- How Big Does a New-Build Apartment Need To Be?
- How Big Does a New-Build House Need To Be?
- What Size of Development Project Should Investors be Looking At?
- What National Guidelines for Room Sizes Do Developers Need to Consider?
- What do Investors Need to Know About Fire Safety?
Understanding Room Sizes
Amy: What do you think of the national guidelines for room sizes? And I don’t know if you know much about how this compares to other countries, in, say, across Europe or America. How are our guidelines measuring up?
Grant: Internationally, I don’t know but there’s a really easy way to look at this and it’s generally based on weather.
If you live in a warm climate, you can afford to have a bigger room because you don’t have heat the room. If you live in a cold climate then it’s more important to think about the size of the windows their location.
Grant: For rooms sizes, here. It always interests me, when it comes to HMO licensing.
So they’ll say, ‘A room must be 10 square metres’. Well, I can take a room at 2 metres wide by 5 metres long, which is 10 square metres and it’s crap.
You stick a bed in it and you can’t get anything else into the thing.
Or, I can take a room which 4 by 2.5v which s a good proportion. So, actually, the proportion is a more important thing to understand than actual just room size.
You can’t just read it off a table and go that needs to be…
But I understand that if we don’t put a number on it then everybody would be living in a wardrobe, sleeping upright, sort of thing.
So, I think, one of the things, and this is a tip that I can give people, if you’re using a design team, ask them to show the furniture on the floor-plan.
Some house builders in the 90s were very, very guilty of this, of putting up a new-build, 3-bed house and you couldn’t get a bed into the third bedroom.
So, this is a hard-and-fast tip and I do this with all our clients, is show the furniture on the designs.
Show them where the bed’s going to go because you get a 3-bed house built but you can’t get a bed into the third bedroom then it’s not a bedroom.
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