Harringay online

Harringay, Haringey - So Good they Spelt it Twice!

We're not able to find a property done to the standard we want and we're considering a full renovation of a 3 bed house in the Ladder/Gardens area. We're considering:

  • side return extension
  • extending the kitchen into the garden
  • loft conversion including dormer to add a bedroom and bathroom in loft
  • full update of a dated property i.e. redo bathrooms, flooring etc

I'd love to hear from people that have done a renovation like this, particularly:

  • how long it took
  • experiences/advice on planning
  • is architect required, did you use a project manager
  • ballpark costs (DM me if you prefer)
  • any other input

Thanks for any advice you can give!

Tags for Forum Posts: architect, builder, renovation

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Hi Sophie

I suggest you make contact with David O'Doherty (07830119421), a very trustworthy builder who has undertaken work for me and completed some very large renovations for others in Haringey. He will be more than happy to give you advice about what is possible and costs etc and show you examples of his work. You will almost certainly require an architect and or structural engineer but David will be able to advise and recommend appropriate people. Certain works will have to be approved and signed off by council. The great thing about David is he is very experienced and takes pride in his work and you can trust his advice. He won't pressure you to engage him so it's well worth getting him in for some initial advice. Of course get 1 or 2 others in as well.

Good luck - Steve 

Likewise contact Voytek from Zeko, link here 

They did a great job on our extension and on a neighbour's - real professionals- but they're usually booked up...

Thank you, will do!

Hi there.  I realise this is an old thread but I wonder if you happen to have a record of the name of the private building inspector Voytek used for final building regs sign off? We need a copy of our completion certificate and I can't for the life of me find it...

Many thanks and fingers crossed...


Thanks Steve that's great advice, D O'D comes recommended by several people on here so I'll definitely try talking to him.

David did our refurb last year and was brilliant for all the reasons you've outlined, Steve. We'd use him again in a heartbeat.

There is a local architect who runs Ask an architect sessions at Blend on a Monday morning. I don't know him or his work (just seen his posts on facebook) but that might be a good place to start. https://www.blarchitects.co.uk/contactus?fbclid=IwAR2-Q1J1EJz4ptryl...

Thanks, yes I'll try and drop by.

  • how long it took –

I think you'd be looking at 6-12 months depending on how you structure the project management

  • experiences/advice on planning

Unless the project falls within permitted development, you will need planning permission. It is possible it would fall within PD; but your message does not give enough information to tell. Take a look at how PD works for loft extension (maximum m3 addition) and extensions (maximum length, and eaves heights especially). If you need planning, get a professional.

  • is architect required, did you use a project manager

Yes, you should get an architect. For a project this size unless you have 1) experience of managing a build and lots of free time, or 2) experience in property and separate project management expertise, I would strongly recommend you get the architect to manage the build. I regret not getting a project manager on my build. The builders were fine. Good in fact. But they were builders and think about things like builders, i.e. "It's time to decide how you want this now" "… but I didn't know I would have to make that decision… could you not have given me some notice?" [Makes rushed decision on the spot] Yes, you will pay for it, but you have to pay for professional. Architects often start with a proposal that their fee to project manage will be a % of the build cost. Although I understand that, I don't love it. I therefore suggest if you find someone you like, you seek to agree a fixed fee with them. Most will agree to it.

  • ballpark costs (DM me if you prefer)

How long is a piece of string! Do you intend to have the builders return the property to you to bare plaster and you repaint yourself? Will you be installing Italian marble worktops at every turn? Let's just say £100k - £150k to pluck a figure out the air. You could potentially spend a bit less than that, or a lot more.

  • any other input

Think about:

1) Legals, I assume you are talking about a freehold house and not leasehold house / flat. If leasehold that is a whole new can of worms, but I assume not. Even if freehold, that does not necessarily mean there are no restrictive covenants over the property.

2) Party Wall. You will need party wall advice. If your neighbours play ball you can all instruct the same surveyor to act for all of you, and the costs might be relatively low. If the neighbouring owners do not want to play ball (and remember – "owner" for the purposes of the party wall act means any owner- if the properties either side are flats, you could be negotiating with up to 6 parties) you could be paying for your surveyor plus all of your neighbours' separate surveyors! Tread carefully here – a personal approach telling neighbours what you intend to do, and asking if they have any questions rather than just serving notices on them out of the blue works best.

Given the scope of work - side, back. Extension and loft I’d add that you are looking at c. 200k. at a minimum. 

Nah. Standard loft and apron side/ rear could be done for well under 200k. Well over 200k as well if you want! 

We're planning a similar project and have met with 10 builders (invited them round for a chat and ballpark figure type thing).  We also liked Voytek actually!

The rough-quotes ranged from between 150k-250k and we know the standard we want will be costing the 250k end. Plus factor in all the architect services, getting planning permission takes 3 months to start with and also renting somewhere to live nearby as you'll not be able to live inside.

All of them said maximum of 4 months for the whole thing, which we were dubious about so will plan for it to take 6 months just in case. Hope that's insightful.



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