Garden rooms FAQ page

Do I need a concrete base?

The Smart Garden Office range is designed for simplicity.

With the Micro and Solo ranges, in many locations, you don’t require a concrete base as long as the area is solid, level and well drained.

With the Duo, Trio or Quarto ranges we can prepare a concrete base (or ring beam) prior to the installation of your office if you wish.
We offer the full end-to-end service, from ground works to installation, to electrical connection and commissioning. The costs for these services will be provided on our quotation following your site survey.

What about Electrics?

All Smart Offices are fully equipped with integral electric sockets, lighting and consumer unit (fusebox).

We can also arrange our electricians to connect your Smart Garden Office to your household consumer unit (fusebox) by way of an armoured cable. Armoured cable does not normally need to be buried and, often, the electrician will complete the task in around a half a day. Alternatively you can use your own electrician to perform the connection.

Included:

Micro: 3 double sockets, spotlights, dimmer switch, fusebox
Solo: 4 double sockets, spotlights, dimmer switch, fuse box
Duo: 5 double sockets, spotlights, dimmer switches
Trio: 6 double sockets, spotlights, dimmer switches
Quarto: 8 double sockets, spotlights, dimmer switches
All our buildings are internally cabled and are ready for connection and certification by an electrician.

Do I need Planning Permission?

Generally you do NOT need planning permission for a Smart Garden Office. Despite a 25-year design life, Smart offices are not considered to be permanent fixtures (as they do not have their own foundations). Being sectional and below 2.5m in height, the Smart range is within the new planning guidelines (October 2008).

However, you may need planning consent if you live in a conservation area or;

The building will occupy more than 50% of your garden
The building will be located between the home and the highway

What is the order process?

Once you contact us we will come out to meet you and conduct a site survey to see what your project needs and requirements are. Then you will need to agree your final garden room design and place your order. Before commencing work, we need the site to be clear of existing structures from a H & S point of view, trees and shrubs, ground rubbish etc but existing grass is fine. We will start any foundation work required which we do in one day. We will return in a few days or an agreed time once the concrete is fully set and start construction of the floor, walls, and roof. We then seal the building making it airtight from the elements before finishing the external wood cladding, internal panelling and electrics.

Can I add additional decking, pathways and lighting?

Yes, we are experts at designing and installing decking and have been building decks around Ireland for o ver 20 years. We have an extensive design catagloue you can view and select your design.We’d be happy to discuss with you what can be done to maximise the look and feel of your garden space.

Is My Smart Garden Office Movable?

Yes!

With a Smart Garden Office you enjoy the flexibility of a truly movable building.

This has been “designed-in” and is a key facet of our own proprietary TuSC system.

Our Move & Remove Service

We regularly undertake our move and remove service – we simply require one months’ notice and we can come and disassemble your office, load it back onto our lorry and will redeliver and reassemble at another address the following day.

This gives you the ability to trade-up, sell-on ( there’s ready demand for second hand models) or to simply move on.

Is there a Waiting List?

We pride ourselves on prompt delivery and professional Installation. We endeavour to create your office within a few weeks from the time you place your order. As each one is hand crafted we will advise you of the confirmed production dates when you place your order.

Installation normally is completed in just 1-2 days by our own fully trained and experienced fitters.

How are Smart Garden Offices made?

Construction:
High spec construction grade timbers and high spec construction grade panel materials are manufactured in our factory and then assembled using our TuSC independent solid socket system. The interlocking nature of this construction means each component adds significantly to the torsion rigidity and structural integrity of the building giving a solid and chunky feel to our buildings.

Craftsmanship
We manufacture in our own factory, in Suffolk, and use the very latest equipment combined with traditional skills and craftsmanship.

Our manufacturing team consists of experienced and qualified joiners and cabinet makers to ensure quality and attention to detail throughout the process.

All materials are of house-build grade and are environmentally certified. All panel manufacturing is completed in-house, with many ancillary items being hand made. We take special care with every aspect of the construction of your garden office.

This means we offer a solid 5-year warranty with all our products.

How do I pay for my Smart Garden Office?

We email a full itemised Order Confirmation which you’ll need to check

Our Payment Schedule is as follows:

A non-refundable deposit of 25% of the full purchase price is payable on ordering your Smart Garden Office

A further 25% of the full purchase price is due as cleared funds 1 week prior to commencement of services (either Groundworks or Installation)

The remaining 50% balance payable immediately upon completion of your installation.

During the manufacturing period we’ll keep you up to date on progress – and will send you a reminder the week prior to your installation.

What’s the difference between a shed and a garden office?

The fundamental difference between a shed and garden office is the nature of the construction. A shed is designed to store garden implements and therefore does not require a consistent temperature. As a cheap means of garden storage the shed is just perfect.

However the requirements of a garden office space are very different. These can be identified as comfort, security, running costs, presentation and structural integrity.

Simply insulating a shed does not make it a garden office – as this does not address the fundamental security, comfort or running cost issues.

A garden office must offer a comfortable (suitably spacious, not too hot, not too cold) space all year round and provide suitable security. Windows and doors must be of the same quality as your house otherwise your valuable items will be very exposed to an easy break in.

Similarly, unless you are planning on undertaking regular maintenance, a purpose built garden office – such as a Smart Garden Office- will reduce the need for expensive and intrusive maintenance.

When insulation and double glazing are used in harmony with each other (and are designed-in) then the running costs of your garden office are much reduced in comparison to working in a shed.

We applaud the term “shedworking” and have hundreds of customers who modestly refer to their Smart Garden office as their “shed”. We all know that the difference between the two is massive.

Does my garden room income qualify for rent relief?

Depending on your final design, your garden room MAY qualify for rent relief and offer a tax free earnings amount of up to 14,000. However, there are some stipulations to qualify for this.
1)The unit must be attached to the house.
2) The unit must be accessed via the main house.

Rental income from things such as Air B&B lets are taxed in the usual way as the scheme only applys to long term lets. For more info, please visit https://www.revenue.ie/en/personal-tax-credits-reliefs-and-exemptions/land-and-property/rent-a-room-relief/index.aspx