Amazing County Down Renovation

This County Down renovation and extension project consisted of upgrading a semi derelict house sitting on a site with amazing views.

In this article we cover:

  • Site hunting and planning permission
  • Changes to the design
  • Rebuilding parts of the house
  • How to get started on the landscaping early without breaking the bank
  • Choosing a builder and day to day self-builder experiences on site
  • Budget cuts: How to make savings on finishes and simpler ways of building
  • Details of unexpected cost overruns
  • Details of lighting and interior design scheme
  • Alternative to polished concrete floor
  • Full supplier list & contact details
  • Full build specifications, including wall, floor, roof and glazing
  • Floor plans and dozens of project photos
  • Self-builder tips and Q&A
  • Build cost calculator (Ireland only)

House size before: 105 sqm
After: 190 sqm
Existing house: floors concrete slab with 150mm PIR insulation and 100mm sand:cement screed. Existing stone walls thermally upgraded with proprietary system finished including glass mineral wool with plasterboard skimmed.
Windows: double glazed uPVC sliding sash. Timber cut roof with 100mm PIR insulation between rafters and 50mm PIR insulation below rafter and finished with natural slate.
New extension: floors concrete slab with 150mm PIR insulation and 100mm sand:cement screed. Walls maonry cavity wall with 150mm blown EPS bead insulation. Windows double glazed aluminium. Timber cut roof with 100mm PIR insulation between rafters and 50mm PIR insulation below rafter and finished with standing seam zinc.
Heating: oil fired central heating and a secondary wood burning stove.
U-values: Walls 0.16 W/sqmK, floor 0.12 W/sqmK, roof 0.15 W/sqmK, openings 1.4 W/sqmK


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Written by Astrid Madsen

Astrid Madsen is the editor of the SelfBuild magazine. She previously held the same role in an Irish trade publication, before that she worked at the National Standards Authority of Ireland. She graduated with a BA in Urban Studies from Columbia University in New York and holds an MBA from the Instituto de Estudios Bursatiles in Madrid. France of origin, she now lives in Portarlington, County Laois, where she's taken on the task of renovating a listed building! Email astrid.madsen@selfbuild.ie

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