At Conservatory Craftsmen we are contacted frequently by curious homeowners that want to know; how much? That’s a fair question to ask. How many people do you know that have even been in a conservatory, let alone have purchased one. If you live in England, you might stop at your neighbor’s home, take tea in their conservatory and chat about the company that supplied and installed their room. Not the case here in America.
So let’s talk about your expectations and what it might cost. I usually use the analogy of a luxury car. As we all know, all cars (well most) have 4 wheels, a motor, a steering wheel and can get you where you want to go. Conservatories have windows, doors, and a glass roof. A luxury car may cost $30,000.00 or it may cost $100,000.00 (or more). That is about the same budget range for most all conservatories.
Frequently, people ask me “how much per square foot”? That is almost as difficult to answer as saying how much a car costs per pound. All structures are different. The level of detail in each is different. Today, I had a phone call from a lovely lady who was quite discouraged because a conservatory company she had called told her to start her budget at $500.00 per square foot! I would be discouraged too! We have recently constructed a beautiful, roomy conservatory in New York for about $125.00 per square foot, plus shipping and installation. This conservatory was even fitted with special, high performance insulated glass.
Not all conservatories will be this reasonable. Mahogany conservatories will cost a bit more. Muntins in the glass may raise the cost. Many factors will drive cost. The best thing to do is to share your expectations with us when you contact us. How large is the room you plan and what is the budget you would like to stay within.
How to control the budget of a conservatory. There are items that are certainly worth a bit more, and items that put cost over the top.
When designing a conservatory, we try to start with the basics and then provide you with the options (again, like the luxury car!).
The roof might be polycarbonate or glass. Let me say this: Polycarbonate is very energy efficient. It is also very strong. Did you know that bullet proof glassis made by laminating polycarbonate between two layers of glass? It can be light filtering and this is a fine quality.
However, polycarbonate does not give you a clear view of the sky. It is a diffused view. It is very very noisy when it rains, and it moves. It has a ‘shrink/swell’ and large spans of polycarbonate can be difficult to control. A polycarbonate roof could save you $10,000.00 on your project. In our case (not other companies) we can take off the polycarbonate in a few years and install glass, if you want.
Customizing Your Conservatory: Where You Can Save
Two colors. Because of our unique ability to provide you with any color you want on the inside and any color you want on the outside, we surpass any company in our ability to service our public. Just be mindful, this adds to the cost of the project.
Single door or double door? Well, a single door cost half the price of a double door, so decide accordingly.
Opening windows: how many windows do you want to open? It adds about $1000 to the project for each operating window, with ClearView retractable screen. Do you plan to open windows? Where is the best airflow?
Roof vents. Sound like and good idea and they are. However, most of our customers seldom use them. We can automate them, and then they are used frequently, but this will add about $1500.00 to each roof vent. Consider this wisely. Is there another way to evacuate hot air from the roof? I use a fan in the attic that pulls air from the room and puts it out the roof of the house. Cheap to install and very effective.
Muntins: All those pretty shapes in the windows. The colonial bars (we call them Georgian), half round hoops. We even do custom leaded windows with bevels and colors. If you have an older home, we can match other window details in the house. Its all available, but it does cost money.
SDL glass. In this case SDL stands for simulated divided lite. It means that when we put the muntin on the window, it is applied outside and inside. In addition, there is a spacer bar inside the insulated glass that matches the muntin on the glass, so the window appears to have truly divided glass, but it is simulated. More on that later.
We will help guide each and every inquiry we receive down the path to a new conservatory for your home. We are budget conscious. Though others may feel that a conservatory needs to be a very expensive addition, we do not. We feel that at some level, everyone should be able to afford the luxury of adding more light and pleasure to your home.