Along with any project one of the first things you need to consider before starting is how much is this going to cost me? Conservatories are no different, in this article we’re going to break down the conservatory prices, along with each different type. We’ve also included an easy to use cost calculator below so you can get a price within seconds. Just pick the style and SQM you want and it will give you a rough price.
The final price may differ from the calculator based off a few things, do you have something there already? Does it need to be knocked down? Do you already have foundations etc?
This guide has been written to help you make an informed decision as to whether you want to go ahead, but also arm you with the knowledge you need to know when dealing with contractors. The more you know, the easier it will be to speak their language and get the best deal possible.
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Other than contractor fees, materials are quite expensive, so if you want to keep the cost low, choosing more affordable option is best. While a conservatory is quite small, the roof can take up a considerable chunk of the budget, depending on the choices that you make. One of the most affordable roofing options is using polycarbonate.
Tip: Do not go for the plaster roof, it won’t last as long and it’s worth saving more to get a much better conservatory.
A dug up steel base is a standard option since it gives a sense of security and longevity. However, if you are on a strict budget, you should consider a prefabricated base since it is cheaper to get and doesn’t involve as much work. The most important thing is to make sure that the foundation is well set.
Construct during off-peak season
But you can usually get a better deal by going off-peak. Builders tend to be less busy and with no rush on your end, being flexible might just get you a better deal.
You should ALWAYS get multiple quotes, even if it’s a family friend doing the work. Chances are a family friend would be cheaper, but at least you know how big a Christmas present you need to get them based off how much they save you!
Avoid planning permission
You must keep the construction of the Conservatory within the recommended size to avoid having to get permission for it. As a rule, it shouldn’t go higher than the roof of your house and shouldn’t be visible from a public road. You can also seek advice from your contractor on the requirements.
Avoid custom fittings
Whether it is doors or windows, it will cost you a lot more if you need it bespoke. To save on costs, always opt for the standard sizes offered and look for exciting designs from what is available. There are so many options from which to choose, so do your research, and you should find something that fits your style.
Editors Note: You should always be getting multiple quotes for ANY job you get done on your home.
What is the average cost of a conservatory?
It is challenging to come up with an exact figure of how much you should expect to spend on constructing your Conservatory.
This is because not all of you will have the same starting point, some of you will already have a conservatory and will just want to redo it, which means (unless you want to change the size) the foundations are still there. Some will be in central London, others in Cornwall. So keep this in mind when looking at the prices estimated in this article.
However, you can get a sample quote for a small conservatory to guide you on what to expect. The following are some average costs of constructing a structure of this size. Note the material used is UPVC since it is the most affordable material, so these prices are on the lower side.
Choosing the style of your Conservatory and how much it will cost
One of the first things to have in mind when you are planning the construction of your Conservatory is the style. A common conservatory that most people go for is as an extension to the kitchen. You can, however, make it into whatever you like, but remember how much work will go into making way for it will highly influence the cost.
There are different styles from which to choose, but these alone don’t determine the price of the Conservatory. The following are the most common styles from which to choose.
Victorian Conservatory Cost
If your home has an older style, then a Victorian conservatory may just work for you. The design was introduced over 150 years ago, and thanks to the large bay windows, you get perfect views. This style is excellent for a living room extension or bedroom, and it is implemented best when you have an excellent view of the outside. It does, however, cost a bit more than the other basic designs and because it may need the use of other materials such as brick.
If you are on a tight budget, but you still want a good conservatory, then the lean-to is the best style for you. It is a suitable design for most homes, especially if the roof isn’t set too high. The name lean-to comes from the fact that the roof of this Conservatory leans from the main house to cover the extension. This makes it cheap and easy to install the roof, but remember to go glass where you can.
Edwardian Conservatory Cost
These are rectangular-shaped and may have a traditional design, which is why it is a favourite in Britain. Due to the shape, it may look and feel bigger on the inside; hence it would be the best option if you want to feel like you’ve added a load more space.
P-Shaped Conservatory Cost
If you like the Victorian and lean-to styles, then the P-shaped Conservatory may suit you since it is a blend of both, but better. It is a great design when you want your Conservatory to be a room on its own, so if you want to create an extra living room this could be perfect.
The best thing about the growth of technology is that it has given you more options. If none of the main styles takes your fancy, then you should get your Conservatory custom made. You can have a completely new and unique style drawn up for you and get a quote for the same.
Remember that a bespoke design will cost more depending on what you want, but you can get a much simpler design made for less.
Differences in Conservatory Walls
There are two main types of walls from which to choose either dwarf or glazed. The dwarf wall is more expensive, but this depends on the type of glass that you will choose for glazed walls.
The name dwarf walls came about because you don’t get a complete glass wall. Instead, your contractor will set up a smaller base then the glass on top of that, but the size is generally smaller than a standard structure. It is preferred because it gives your frame stronger support.
However, due to the extra work that is required for such a build, it will cost you at least £700 more.
These go from top to the bottom of your Conservatory. While many homeowners usually prefer the dwarf option, the glazed walls are becoming more popular since they are cost-effective and still strong enough.
They are a wonderful option, but there are some issues you should look a before deciding. The strength of the walls is one thing, and since it is made of glass, you need a solid frame to support it, so uPVC is probably not the best option. It needs to be strong enough to support the type of roof you choose. Other factors to consider include:
- Is it secure? Since it is all glass, it can be quite easy for burglars to break into so you may want to invest in tougher glass. Unfortunately, this will increase the final cost of the Conservatory, which is why many people opt for dwarf walls in the first place.
- Insulation. If you want to keep the Conservatory warm enough so that it is not a cold spot in your house. Fully glazed windows may cost a lot depending on the size of your Conservatory, and it may make more sense to have the dwarf wall. However, get a comparison from your contractor and enquire about how well the glazed walls perform against a dwarf one, so you make a more informed decision.
Tip: If you’re worried about it getting cold, you can always opt for triple glazing.
How much do conservatory extensions cost?
In many ways, a conservatory is an extension other than the fact that they are usually for extending the living area. However, you can have a conservatory for different rooms in your house, such as a bedroom or kitchen. The kitchen extension is most common, and the prices for achieving this are usually different.
I personally only really use mine for reading, but I love it!
To ensure that this extension serves as a full kitchen with all the provisions, it will cost you a bit more than the standard Conservatory. It is a great way of giving your home a bit of a twist since it can be made to accommodate a dining area hence serving the purpose of a standard structure. It also adds more light to the home and may also increase the sale value of your property if you are looking to sell in the future.
Even for a small kitchen, the prices are much higher than that of the regular Conservatory. This is mostly because of the new fittings required, but the final look is worth every coin. The following is a table that summarizes the cost of a standard 2500×3500 kitchen extension made using UPVC.
|Type of Conservatory||Type of kitchen||Cost|
|Edwardian||Basic design with appliances||£14,000 – £18,000|
|Lean-To||Ready to assemble kitchen with no appliances||£7,300 – £9,800|
|Edwardian||Custom kitchen with appliances||£18,000 – £27,000|
|Lean-To||Basic design with appliances||£13,500 – £16,000|
3×3 Conservatories Prices
This is the standard size of a conservatory as it offers adequate space for family time. These extensions are usually pretty easy to construct. If you need more space without going for the full 4×4, you can request a quote for a 4×3. The following are price estimates for an affordable, complete build 3×3 design.
|Type of Conservatory||Frame and Roof Materials||Cost|
|Victorian||UPVC and polycarbonate||£9,000 to £11,000|
|Edwardian||UPVC and Glass||£8,500 to £10,000|
|Lean-To||UPVC and polycarbonate||£6,500 to £7,500|
|Gable||UPVC and Glass||£7,000 to £8,000|
4×4 Conservatories Prices
These are much larger 16 square meters conservatories that are great where you need more room, and there is available space. However, you need to be careful with the design as it could require planning permission if it is too big. Ensure that you consult your contractor on this to avoid extra charges. The following is a price guide for such a structure using a UPVC frame.
|Type of Conservatory||Type of Roof||Cost|
|Edwardian||Polycarbonate||£11,000 to 13,000|
|Gable||Polycarbonate||£13,000 to £15,000|
|Lean-To||Glass||£9,000 to £12,000|
|Victorian||Glass||£12,500 to £14,000|
Orangery and Glass Conservatory
If you are not on a tight budget and you would like a luxury extension to your home, then a small orangery is an excellent choice. It tends to be a bit larger than the standard Conservatory, which is why, in many ways, it is considered an extension and can be made into anything you want.
An orangery is custom made so it can be designed to fit the structure of your home, for example, using brick but can also be made to stand out when using just glass. They are made to provide more room and use glazed glass to ensure that it is warm. As you can imagine, this will not come cheap, so it is a project for which adequate planning is required.
Due to the size and general build of an orangery, you may require planning permission from your local authority.
The complexity of the project and the size largely determine the price of an orangery. However, you should expect to pay no less than £15,000 and up to £30,000. The following is a table showing the prices of a small 3×3 glass conservatory.
|Type of Conservatory||Cost|
|Loggia||£10,000 to £15,500|
|Victorian||£11,000 to £15,000|
|Lean-To||£8,000 to 10,500|
Due to the low roof, some designs of conservatories may not be suitable for a bungalow. This is one of the reasons why you should have a plan for your house when getting a quote if it is not done on-site. However, this is all dependent on which side of your home you will have the structure built.
For most homes, having a lean-to design is a no brainer since it is easier to execute whether or not the house has a raised roof. In some cases where the ceiling is higher, you may manage to use a Gable or Edwardian design, but again, the sides matter a great deal here.
The best thing about bungalows is that you still have the option of either full walls or dwarf ones. Both of them work well without needing planning permission. You may include gutters that connect to the rest of the house, although this is easier and neater with a lean-to.
For a small conservatory, you can pay as low as £6,500. However, the overall price is dictated on the design and how easy it is to build on your property.
Do you need planning permission for the Conservatory?
Not always, you should check with your local council for more information as it changes depending on where in the UK you live.
Usually, you are required to get planning permission whenever you are building on a piece of land. This law is created mostly for checking the aesthetics of new construction in an existing neighbourhood. You may not always need permissions if the structure that you are constructing is within the permitted development clause.
- The height cannot be more than four meters, or if it is within two meters of a wall, it should not be more than three meters high.
- In the case of a side extension, it shouldn’t be more than half the width of the original house.
- It should not expand to more than half the space of land in the garden.
- The roof shouldn’t be higher than the roof of the original house.
- It should not have a verandah, chimney, or raised ground.
- It cannot be more than one storey.
- It should not block a public road – obviously
In the case that you may need planning permission, you will need complete details of your current home and land as well as the Conservatory you want to build. The application can be made through the planning portal online, and you will be required to pay a fee that is non-refundable even when your application is denied. Some contractors offer to take care of this paperwork, so ask about it first.
Constructing a conservatory is quite easy and shouldn’t take long as long it is a great way to quickly get more space in your home. However, the most important thing is to know everything that is expected, as that will eliminate overspending. The above-given costs are just estimated to understand what you are expected to pay. For actual prices, you have to find some contractors and tradespeople who can even go on-site, so it may be more or less what is given.
If you are looking to save money in your project, the best thing you can do is to look for quality yet affordable materials such as UPVC. Even then, you can get more value for money if you opt for wholesale suppliers who can give you a better discount and free delivery.
Is it cheaper to build a conservatory or extension?
While an extension can increase the value of a home, a conservatory can be built for far less money. In most cases, the cost of a conservatory will be less than that of a similar-sized single-storey extension. It may be argued that the cost-benefit analysis favours an expansion because it allows you to build more usable areas that can be enjoyed throughout the year. Obtaining the necessary permits before beginning construction on an extension might help you prevent headaches down the road if you need to make any changes to your home's footprint. On top of that, problems or design adjustments may result in unexpected expenses, which aren't factored into the fixed price of a conservatory.
How much does a conservatory cost on average?
It is difficult to provide an accurate estimate of how much it will cost to build your Conservatory. One way to get an idea of costs is to request a modest conservatory estimate. Below are some approximate figures for the price of building a structure of this size. Keep in mind that these low costs are achieved using the most inexpensive material available, UPVC.
- Victorian £7,000-£11,000
- Lean-to £5,700-£7,700
- P-Shaped £8,300-£10,000
- T-Shaped £11,000-£15,000
- Orangery £15,500-£20,000
- Edwardian £9,000-£11,000
- L-Shaped £11,000-£13,000
Do Conservatories add value to a house?
Adding a conservatory to your house is a popular way to increase your living area and dazzle guests. To attract more homebuyers, you might consider expanding your property by adding a new room. Rather than spending a lot of money and time on an extension, you might increase your home's value with little effort. The addition of a well-constructed conservatory might add as much as 5% to the value of your property. However, like with any renovation, a number of variables might affect how much a conservatory actually increases the value of a home. Size and materials used are two of the most crucial factors.
Do you need foundations for a conservatory?
As an expansion to a house, a conservatory needs the same sturdy foundations as the rest of the structure. The pilings of a building are very important since they determine the structure's overall strength. Without proper excavation, groundwork, and footings, your conservatory could begin to sink. It is not advised to begin construction of any structure, including a little lean-to conservatory, without first thoroughly preparing the ground and laying the foundations. By providing a solid footing, foundations make buildings more secure and less susceptible to ground movement.
What can I have instead of a conservatory?
Those considering a home expansion have a wide variety of choices. You really shouldn't restrict yourself to a conservatory. Some alternatives to a conservatory include:
- Orangery: An orangery is a sort of sunroom that is often spoken in the same breath as a conservatory since the two are so similar in appearance and function.
- Garden Office/Garden Room: They're perfect for creating a different location within your home.
- Veranda: A veranda can add a touch of class and sophistication to any home. They are open and airy, thanks to the huge windows, bifold doors, and uPVC bars.
- Pergola or Canopy: If you already have a patio installed in your yard, a pergola or canopy may be the best way to make it larger.