FAQ

Welcome to our FAQ’s page where hopefully you will be able to find the answers to the questions that most people ask when considering a building for their garden – everything from do I need planning permission and if so what the building regulations? to questions concerning quality and build and even HMRC and VAT implications.

We have provided many of the questions that we regularly get asked however if you can’t find an answer then please do not hesitate to contact us.

Manufacturing Quality & Design (15)

All of our buildings come standard with double-glazing. Our smaller ranges of buildings can all be upgraded to residential-quality windows and door, offering even better quality and increased thermal insulation.

Our passive homes need to meet the very highest standard in thermal efficiency so they all come with triple-glazed units.

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Bi­-fold doors consist of a number of glass panels that can be folded together and to one side. They are a great option to create a light-­filled space, connecting the living areas to the outside.

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All of our buildings possess better insulation values than traditional shed-style buildings. However we would certainly recommend upgrading to roof and floor insulation to increase comfort levels, reduce heating costs and future-proof your building for changes in use. We will discuss with you any recommendations that we feel may benefit your intended use of your building.

Our larger (residential) buildings are designed to be enjoyed all year round, with unrivalled levels of insulation as standard. Insulation is built into our timber frame panels, and is added between the wall layers of our twin­-skin log buildings. We can insulate according to the U-­values the building needs to achieve, right up to passive house standards, but as a guide 100mm of insulation is very efficient for most requirements to cover walls, 175mm insulation for floors, and 215mm in the roof.

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We favour Siberian larch for our timber frame builds because of its excellent durability, dimensional stability (minimal shrinkage/swelling), and aesthetic beauty. It grows very slowly, making it extremely dense and strong when compared to other softwoods. In fact, Siberian larch is one of the toughest and most durable softwoods in the world. It can be painted or treated to maintain its straw­like colour, or when weathered it transforms to a beautifully consistent silver/grey, which is highly desirable in many cladding projects. Siberian larch should not be confused with the dark pink British/European larch that grows faster and not as dense in a warmer, wetter climate. Siberian larch also contains fewer knots – for a clean, contemporary, and consistent look – and, unlike British/European larch, its knots are light in colour and remain solid, even after drying and machining.

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Alternative to timber frame construction, offering the traditional log cabin look of timber inside and out with interlocking exterior feature corners. Constructed log­ by log, rather than from sections/panels, this type of build is well suited to sites with restricted access. Log buildings are available as single skin or twin­ skin glulam.

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U­-values (also known as ‘heat transfer coefficients’) are a measure of how effective a building element (such as a wall, floor, roof, etc) is at preventing heat from transmitting between the inside and the outside of a building. The lower the U­value, the less energy is required to maintain comfortable conditions inside the building. U-­value requirements are part of meeting Building Regulations. Our buildings are designed to be high performance. High levels of insulation and quality features such as double, triple, and argon­filled glazing ensure low U-­values, all the way to passive house standards – like we’ve achieved on our show home.

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This is a type of log construction featuring two wall layers, or skins. The plumbing and electrics are hidden between the two wall layers. Insulation is added here too, which makes twin-skin a good option for residential log builds, particularly if building regulations are required.

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Constructed from sections/panels with full insulation built in, this type of build gives you a plasterboard interior finish inline with modern houses, with plumbing and electrics hidden behind. It’s an ideal option if building regulations is required. The exterior features vertical Siberian larch cladding to provide a clean, contemporary, and consistent look.

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Timber is the only mainstream 100% renewable building material. Increased demand means increased sustainable managed forest to supply it, so its a win-­win situation. Timber has the lowest embodied energy and best thermal insulation properties of any mainstream building material. Our timber is FSC­approved and comes straight out of the forest and into the mill, so handling is minimal.

Our timber buildings are built to order and precision engineered in factory-­controlled conditions, so wastage is minimised, and so are post erection quality/snagging issues. Timber buildings are quick to erect, so on site construction time and resources is greatly reduced.

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Type of log construction featuring a single wall layer, or skin. With only one wall layer, plumbing and electrics are face­mounted – so pipes and cables (inside conduit) can be seen running along walls – and the wood itself is the insulation. For hidden electrics and plumbing, and additional insulation see ‘twin­ skin’.

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A Passive House creates a super insulated energy efficient home, with tiny heating bills, minimal carbon footprint, lots of natural light and superior levels of comfort compared to normal homes. We can design passive house technology into our residential models. The interior maintains a comfortable temperature – from the coldest day of winter to the hottest day of summer – without traditional heating and air- conditioning systems. The thickness of the walls, roof and floor is greatly increased and all glass upgraded to argon- filled triple glazing to achieve the incredible levels of insulation and U­values required. A mechanical heat recovery ventilation system provides a constant supply of fresh air using only a fraction of the energy consumed by a typical house.

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For maximum quality we use glued laminated timber (glulam) for our residential log buildings, as opposed to standard solid timber. Solid timber moves throughout the year because of shrinking/swelling, and it splits easily, too. Glulam is engineered from 40mm layers of timber (woodgrains in opposing directions) bonded together to increase strength and stability. It won’t rot, shrink, crack or split – it’s virtually maintenance free, and lasts a lifetime. Glulam can conform to building regulations because structural calculations can be made that aren’t possible with standard solid timber. If you prefer a plasterboard interior finish in line with modern houses, rather than the traditional timber look, glulam makes it possible to add framework and plasterboard to the internal walls that are external facing.

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The Forest Stewardship Council is the hallmark of responsible forest management, and the most widely recognised forest certification system worldwide. We only use FSC­ approved timber, so you know your new building has been responsibly sourced.

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Eurocodes are a series of standards that establish common rules across the European Economic Area (EEA) for structural design using any material. EC5 is the suite of standards specifically relating to timber structures. It replaces BS 5268, which is no longer maintained by BSI (British Standards Institution). Our buildings comply with EC5.

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This is a measurement of how strong the timber is. The timber’s characteristics are graded against permissible limits for the timber species. The higher the number, the stronger the timber. A common strength class in the UK is C16. We only use timber of C24 to C40 (more in line with demanding Scandinavian requirements) to ensure the highest quality possible.

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