For people looking to extend their homes, having a conservatory is a popular choice.
Why? Conservatories are versatile rooms, built to a variety of specifications and to styles which can be modelled to your personal preferences.
How much does a conservatory cost? The range of prices you may have seen or been quoted might have varied greatly. Depending on the style you want, the size you want, and the contractor you choose, your conservatory project could range in price from as little as £6,000 to £35,000.
Of course, the significant variations in price range are for a reason – you shouldn’t expect to pay the same for a full orangery conservatory as you would for a lean-to.
There are other factors behind why the cost of a conservatory, even very similar looking ones, are different depending on the company you get them from. In this article, we’ll look at why.
Big conservatory companies will often use subcontractors to do different parts of a conservatory build.
You may have noticed the workers digging the foundations weren’t the same as those sealing the roof, or laying the bricks, for example.
Subcontracting is a way that big companies save money on having full-time staff on their books. Whilst the workmen they use will be very skilled, the subcontractor will make a profit too. So, if a big conservatory company is using a subcontractor to lay your conservatory foundations, there are two companies making a profit from you – the company you bought from and their subcontractor.
Similarly, big companies have higher running costs. A small, family owned business comprising of a few individuals all specialising in different areas may take a day or two longer to complete your conservatory project, but they’ll be working from a single van, and will be in control of the prices directly. Should something go wrong, they’ll be able to explain a change in price without having to consult any ‘higher-ups’.
In contrast, a larger company may have to cover subcontracting expenses, or – for their direct employees – the cost of transport and tools for a larger workforce. They also pay their sales reps pretty substantial commissions – a sales rep’s commission may be up to 20% of the price you’re paying.
Tradesmenprices.co.uk only works with quality-assured, local independent conservatory installers.
If you’re looking for a conservatory quote, why not fill out the form below? We’ll give you free quotes, which you can compare with others you may have received.
In general, you’ll see conservatories grouped into two distinct categories: traditional conservatories, and orangeries.
Traditional Fully Fitted Conservatory Cost
Traditional conservatories are the most popular, and they come in about as many styles as you can come up with. The most popular types of standard conservatory are lean-tos, which feature – as the name suggests – an angled roof that ‘leans’ from the outer wall, sloping towards the ground in a single direction.
Of course, the smaller a conservatory is, the cheaper it will be. For a typical 3mx3m lean-to conservatory, you’re looking at a price range of £5,200 to around £5,400, including supply, labour, and fitting.
Increasingly popular in the UK is the Edwardian or Victorian style of conservatory. They are just like a lean-to conservatory but they have an “apex”-shaped roof instead of the sloping lean-to style. The price difference between a lean-to and an Edwardian/Victorian-style conservatory is not that great with prices coming in around £5,750 to £5,950.
Fully Fitted Orangery Conservatory Cost
Orangeries often cost a lot more than standard conservatories. They’re a type of hybrid conservatory combining traditional conservatory features with those of a living room. Orangeries are popular because they can be used all year round and almost always add value to your property.
In the UK, the average cost of an orangery is upwards of £20,000. The price alone can be an automatic deal breaker for some, but it is possible to find high-quality orangeries for as little as £10,000. Yes, that’s still twice the price of a normal conservatory, but when you consider all the benefits an orangery offers, the price seems far more reasonable.
Additionally, the materials used in the construction of your orangery will likely be more expensive than those used for a lean-to conservatory. When looking at quotes for your orangery, try to think of them as if you were paying for an extension – after all, that’s what an orangery is, even though it’s mostly glass.
The average cost of a 20m² single-storey extension is between £30,000 and £50,000. Compared to this, an orangery of the same size at a cost of £20,000 is a bargain!
If you’re worried about paying more for your conservatory than you need to, look at the prices of your supply materials before you get any quotes in. Try and price up a cost sheet yourself, excluding labour and overheads, so you can get an idea of where your money is going. And don’t forget – you get what you pay for.
If it would be a financial struggle to afford more durable materials for your conservatory at this point in time, maybe consider saving up for a little while longer until you know your project will sit comfortably within your budget.
The last thing you want is your ‘good value’ conservatory costing you hundreds in repairs over the years because of shoddy workmanship or cheap materials.
Your best option is to look at conservatory designs that are the best value for money, without having to compromise on quality. You can use our free quote form to do this – simply fill out some basic personal information, then choose the type of conservatory you’re looking at and add any extra information you think we’ll need, like size or budget.
Why would someone want a conservatory?
Conservatories are a great choice for people who want to extend and add value to their home but can’t afford a ground floor extension.
If you have a nice garden you want a proper view of from indoors, you want somewhere to entertain guests, or you want something as simple as a nice, comfortable all-year-round room to place another TV set in, installing a conservatory may be the right option for you.
What are the benefits of a conservatory?
Conservatories add extra space to your home, and benefit from natural light as they are predominantly made of glass. They’re also extremely versatile builds – some people use their conservatories as storage space attached to the side of the house where others decorate and install furniture to make an additional living space.
Conservatories can be wired up to offer heating in winter and blinds or shades can be installed to minimise direct sunlight during summer.
What are the disadvantages of conservatories?
The temperature inside your conservative can fluctuate a lot because most of it is made from glass.
Conservatories traditionally feature either a glass or polycarbonate roof and can be built on either north or south facing sides of the property. South facing conservatories tend to see an unwanted heat retention problem, as they are in direct sunlight. This can lead to ‘unbearable’ temperatures occurring.
If you’re determined to have a glass roof installed, there are a few popular treated glass options that help reduce direct sunlight and heat retention/loss. The most common is Active neutral (grey) glass, which allows 56% light transmission, 68% solar transmission, and has a U-Value of 1.0.
Will I need planning permission for a conservatory?
The conservatory must not go past the back wall of your original home by more than three metres if it’s being built onto, for example, a terraced or a semi-detached house. For detached homes, you have four metres.
The maximum height for any conservatory, (or single-story extension, for that matter) is four metres. If you’re looking for more specific information, click here for a comprehensive guide.
Who can I buy a conservatory from?
You can buy a conservatory from any number of our GGF approved contractors who we work with to bring you the best quotes for your project.
You can find local conservatory installers online. You can also use the form on this page to get 3 or more quotes from local contractors.
Should my conservatory installer be a member of any organisations?
Whoever installs your glasswork should be a part of the Glass and Glazing Federation, so to make sure they’re a tradesman you can have trust in, look for a quote through Tradesmenprices.co.uk.
We only work with registered and accredited contractors, so you don’t need to worry about confirming their eligibility.
How long does it take to install a conservatory?
Typically, a medium-sized conservatory will take between three to four weeks to fully install, including all finishing off and clearing up. Construction begins with the base, and usually takes around three days to dig the footings, lay the foundations, and level the floor, prior to building the walls.
After this, you can expect a short period of settling, usually timed so it’s over a weekend. In the second week, the frames should go up, and the glazing be completed.
Finally, you’ll watch the walls be plastered (if necessary) and the floor will go in. If you’re concerned about floor space right after the foundations are laid, don’t be! Often, conservatories look smaller than they are during construction. Just wait until the frames go up.
Before I get a conservatory, what should I ask a potential installer?
It’s important that, right from the start, your installer understands exactly what you want from your conservatory installation. A lack of clear communication can cause problems later on. You have every right to ask questions at any time of your contractor.
Making sure you’re on the same page as your chosen contractors is important. Check which materials they’re using, and don’t be afraid to ask how much they paid for them – it’s your build, after all.
If you’re concerned about how long the build is going to take, let the company know. They’ll understand and will explain how long everything should take, and why it does so.
Buying a conservatory is a big commitment. Conservatories are expensive and it takes a few weeks to install one – there will be some upheaval in your home for a little while.
By using Tradesmenprices.co.uk, you’ll be connected to 3-4 local conservatory installers with a proper track record of successful work behind them. Better still, if there are 3 or 4 companies competing for your business, that’s going to bring the price you pay down without affecting quality.
You can also compare the quote we produce with any you have already received. Please scroll up to fill in our free quotations form.