Eco Home

Eco Home

Eco Home

Building a piece of eco-architecture from the ground up is one of the many benefits of tackling a new home from scratch. At Scenario, we build all our new homes using eco-friendly construction practices, sustainable materials, eco-design and environmentally friendly technology for living a clean, low-carbon life.

But if you’re hiring an architect for a renovation or expansion of your existing home, we can seamlessly incorporate the latest sustainable technology to deliver an eco-house. All it takes is some creative thinking, good collaboration and a willingness to be open-minded. Fine-tuning an eco-house design with innovative materials and renewable energy can net immediate benefits, ranging from improved thermal wellbeing to reduced carbon footprint.

If you are one of millions of British homeowners eager to join the global shift towards sustainability, future-proofing your home is a wise move that will prove rewarding in the long term.

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Eco Home Your Eco Home project

Starting your Eco Home project

We launched Scenario Architecture in 2007 with a vision to design functional, liveable spaces that look to the future while respecting the past. Our architects take a creative, considered approach to British architecture, incorporating eco-friendly materials and technology into our designs.

Our landmark project Scenario House demonstrates our commitment to smart, resourceful details that contribute to the environmental whole. In 2018 the light-filled East London Victorian conversion was shortlisted for several architecture prizes, including the prestigious RIBA London Awards.

Tip

Discover if your architect has had success steering planning applications through your local council. Visit the “planning applications” page of your council’s website and enter the architect’s name in the search criteria.

Eco Home

Advice

We have created guides for homeowners to provide additional advice and help with your project. The following eBooks are currently available for you to download:

1. Planning in London and the home counties - A guide for homeowners
2. Self build - A guide to building your own new build home
Download eBooks

Eco Home Your Eco Home project >> Scenario Architecture

Working with Scenario Architecture on your Eco Home project

Our dynamic studio designs modern, efficient homes in London and the southeast. We tackle projects of every scale and complexity, from interior renovations and single-storey extensions to lofts, basements and new-build eco-houses.

We collaborate closely with our clients from the initial concept through detail designs, planning, tender and construction and aim to complete all our projects on time and to budget, using the latest 3D design and visualisation technology is essential to our process. Our fluency with these home-building tools allows us to design precisely and sustainably. Building information modelling technology (BIM) saves time, energy and money, producing reliable construction information that renders accurate data on all our models.

This Chartered Institute of Building case study featuring one of our flagship projects demonstrates the benefits of advanced technology for modern house design.

Scenario is a RIBA Chartered Practice. We comply with the criteria of the Royal Institute of British Architects, covering insurance, health and safety and quality-management systems.

Eco Home

Wrap-around extension and full renovation

Eco Home

Extensive renovation within a conservation area

Eco Home

Full refurbishment of a terraced house

Eco Home Your Eco Home Project >> Further Reading

As a society, we’ve never had better tools for living a sustainable life, and architecture is no exception to the current movement. As architects, whether we’re updating an old home or building anew, we have access to cutting-edge materials and techniques that reduce energy consumption and help our clients live a cleaner, less wasteful life. From solar panels to triple glazing, from renewable heating to reclaimed wood, our options have never been more plentiful.

With that in mind, we at Scenario have collaborated with a team of sustainability experts to create optional “tiers” for our clients on the ladder to total sustainability. Our offerings start with basic compliance with local environmental regulations and progress to top-of-the-line diamond certification. Each package improves on the last in terms of the tangible benefits. They offer sound-proofing, temperature control, renewable utilities and reduced overall carbon footprint. The higher the tier, the more you save on energy consumption and running costs into the future – and the quicker the return on your investment.

We’ve costed out these options and come to the figure of £2,000 to £3,000 per square metre for building a new home in or around London. This may sound like a wide range in costs, but establishing just a few basic details about a project can help narrow the gap. Refining these initial estimates requires working out our construction methods, the structural approach, the quality of your fixtures and fittings, the level of sustainability you want and, importantly, the addition of a basement level – digging a full basement normally costs between £3,000 and £3,500 per square metre, before we introduce any sustainability measures.

A highly sustainable house will pay off in the long run, though it will demand a greater capital investment initially. Even with the growing availability of cost-effective measures, we’d budget between £2,500 and £3,000 per square metre, above ground, for a sustainable house. In order to finance your eco-architecture, we suggest you consider a self-build mortgage from an ecology building society.

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Eco Home >> Scenario Architecture In our client's words

FAQ

Eco Home

FAQWhat is unique about the Scenario design process?
The scenario design process was developed, tested and perfected through over a decade of extensive delivery of residential projects within and around London, some of its key features are listed below:   
  • Scenario based design – We start each and every project with a meticulous analysis of our client’s vision, requirements and aspirations. We do this by asking our clients to imagine their everyday scenarios living in the completed house and describe their desired interaction with it. 
We then translate the resulting high definition brief into an informative and revealing 3-dimensional simulation, illuminating aspirations, requirements and patterns of habitation. 
  • Uniquely interactive - Our client’s deep involvement in the process does not stop with completion of the brief. Our design meetings are highly interactive, informal and fun. 
Sitting together in front of a real time 3D model of the proposed design with realistic materials, lighting and textures we push and pull the proposed scheme together to explore its full potential and drag and drop different materials to explore various options. hen we invite our clients to take a virtual reality tour through advanced equipment that is always available in our practice for our clients to explore their projects at different stages of development. 
  • Designed to reflect you – Based purely on your lifestyle, aspirations and requirements and free from externally imposed concepts, metaphors and pre-conceptions, a completely fresh and unique design will gradually emerge and it will tell your story not ours. 
It will not look like an image cut out of a trendy architecture magazine and not designed to intentionally impress anyone. It will feel familiar, warm and inviting and you will recognise yourself in it because it will be a genuine expression of the unique way in which you and your family wish to interact with it and enjoy it for many years to come.

Eco Home

FAQWhich additional consultants are required for my project?
A key aspect, absolutely necessary to ensure successful delivery of your project is appointing a suitable and competent professional team. If we work together on your project we would be appointed as your Architects and Lead Consultants and help you to assemble the rest of the professional team. Most projects in and around London will require at least four additional consultants, a Structural Engineer, a Quantity Surveyor for cost control, an Approved Inspector to ensure and certify compliance with building regulations and a Party Wall Surveyor if any work is to be done to a party wall or structure. For some projects, depending on scale, complexity and your specific aspirations it may be recommended/required to use the services of additional consultants. Including but not limited to: Planning, Heritage, Right of Light, Landscape Designer, Audio Visual and Building Services Engineer. When appropriate, we will discuss these options with you and obtain relevant quotes for all additional consultants for you to consider.

Eco Home

FAQWhat is the cost of building an extension?
Currently we recommend allowing between £2,500 and £3,000 per square metre for side extensions, rear extensions or front extensions. For basement extensions, which are most expensive way to add space to your home, we recommend that you allow between £3,000 and £3,500 per square metre. When it comes to roof extensions, our experience shows that it is better to allow a lump sum of £40,000-£60,000 for loft conversions with dormer windows and between £80,000 and £120,000 for mansard roof extensions. These ranges are based on averages from numerous actual projects that we have completed in and around London since we established Scenario in 2007. We only use these rough costs per square metre during the early stages of design to maintain awareness of your target budget until a cost professional is appointed and more accurate methods of estimation are employed. The actual cost for your project will depend on many factors, including the complexity of the design, level of structural support required, and selection of fixtures, fittings material finishes. Using these rough ranges as a guide we will work together with you in an interactive process to optimise budget and scope and find the balance that works best for you. The estimated costs per square metre mentioned above are for the build costs only and exclude VAT and professional fees.

Eco Home

FAQWhat is the cost of an internal refurbishment?
Currently we recommend allowing between £2,500 and £3,000 per square metre for areas which will undergo an extensive renovation. We designate an area of the project as extensive renovation if the planned works includes substantial changes to layouts, significant structural works, re-plumbing, re-wiring and full redecoration. For areas of lighter internal renovation which do not require significant changes to layout or substantial structural works but do require full redecoration, re-plumbing and rewiring, we recommend allowing between £2,000 and £2,500 as an estimated cost per square metre, we designate these areas as requiring medium renovation. If there areas in your project which only call for a light renovation such as re-plastering, and painting, installing new floor finishes and light modifications of electrics and plumbing fittings, we will designate these as areas of light renovation and recommend that you allow £1,500-£2,000 per square metre or even as low as between £1,000-£1,500 if you only have light touches in mind. The real cost for your project will depend on several different variables including the complexity of the design, extent of structural works and level of fixtures, fittings and material finishes. These estimated costs per square metre are for the build cost excluding VAT and professional fees.

Eco Home

FAQWho will be assigned to work on my project?
Any architectural project comprises three main aspects, Creative design, Technical design and Project Management. A successful architectural project can only be achieved when all three aspects are properly performed and harmoniously integrated by an experienced professional. But can we really except a single person to specialise and shine in all three aspects and furthermore skilfully negotiate and balance the often contradictory challenges these aspects present? The basic assumption underlying the common structure of almost all other architectural practices today is that it is possible and this is precisely what is expected from the lone and often junior Architect that would typically be assigned to run your project start to finish. Scenario works in a completely different and new way, we believe in specialism and teamwork and therefore assign three experienced specialists for each and every project. A project team in Scenario is composed of a Project Director, a Designer and a Technical Designer, seamlessly collaborating to deliver results, which are noticeably superior to anything that a single person, skilful as they may be, could ever produce.

Eco Home

FAQWhat is Scenario’s approach to sustainability?
In the past, it was common practice for local authorities to impose sustainability standards on residential developments. However, the 2015 Deregulation Act removed the obligation on local authorities to require any standard at all, which means the only requirements having fallen back to those of the Building Regulations.  With no clear and improved targets to work towards, in collaboration with Envision (www.envisioneco.com), we have created optional Sustainability ‘Levels’ to offer our clients the chance to drastically improve the sustainability credentials of their home. These ‘Levels’ encompassing Bronze, Silver, Gold and Diamond, traverse a clear and applicable route from basic compliance with current Building Regulations all the way to the full and rigorous HQM (Home Quality Mark) certification within Level Diamond. As the packages become more elaborate in terms of sustainability, analysis and implemented measures, they provide increasing tangible benefits. Ranging from thermal and acoustic comfort and wellbeing, to reduced carbon foot print, savings on running costs and significant advantages through the planning process.  The more elaborate packages obviously entail higher cost in terms of professional fees as well as impact on the construction cost, although each sustainability ‘Level’ will endeavour to not overly burden the construction budget.

Eco Home

FAQWhat is building control and is it required for my project?
In a nutshell building control is the means by which Local Authorities enforce compliance with current Building Regulations.  In practice there are two main ways to go about obtaining the required advice and certification for your project, via your Local Council’s Building Control Department or via direct appointment of an Approved Inspector who is authorised to carry out the inspection and certification on behalf of any local authority.   The role of either the Council’s Building Control Officer or an Approved Inspector is to verify that your project meets all current Building Regulations. They will review and approve all the drawings, inspect the actual work carried out on site and once the project is completed, issue the final compliance certificate. Due to an open market, healthy competition between local councils and approved inspectors, the process and associated costs are almost identical. Having said that, our experience is that the private inspectors still feel and behave more as your appointed consultants and the council’s service still feels more like a statutory inspection and it is often slower and less responsive.  While it is always good to be informed and understand the process well, as your appointed architects we will take care of this aspect of the project for you and save you considering comparable quotes that we will obtain on your behalf and appointing the selected provider. You can leave this aspect of your project entirely with us.  Building control is required for almost all projects, and for all the projects we ever worked on as only minor renovation works may be exempt.