New life for lock ups

Monday, 30th October 2017

These new bungalows being built in County Durham are not just the average new build homes that you find on many a development site.

The stylish two bedroom properties are being developed inside the walls of former lock up garages – providing highly insulated homes, ready for residents to move in, as quickly as 12 weeks from starting on site to completion.

We have signed up to buy eight of the innovative ‘HUSK’ properties, which are pre-fabricated at a factory in Newtown, Wales, before being craned into the sites of former lock-up garages on estates we already manage.

The whole project costs around £800,000 to develop the eight new homes on Betjeman Close in Stanley and on South Leigh in Tanfield Lea.

The properties are built to exact laser-measured dimensions so they will fit precisely inside the walls of the former garages.

Each home is built in two halves, brought to site on low loaders, then joined together by skilled specialist contractors. The company behind the new style of home, HUSK, has a patent pending for the method.

Development and regeneration manager Stephen Riding is managing the construction of the new homes, alongside the team from HUSK.

Stephen said: “We’re really pleased with the progress so far on these new units. This is the first time we’ve tried a pre-fabricated style of property and we’ve been impressed with the results.

“Each of the units has large windows, so they’re flooded with light, and the kitchens and bathrooms are really high specification – just as we would provide in any of our conventionally built homes.”

Michael Farr, development director for Karbon Homes, said: “We have big ambitions to deliver affordable homes across the North East, with about 2,400 to complete over the next four years.

“Garage sites can be difficult to develop, so this is a really innovative solution which we’re excited to explore. For a two-bedroom home, it’s a good size and the amount of insulation will ensure the running costs are kept low. We hope it will be a really appealing option for our residents.”