Self-build, renovation, refurbishment or redevelopment, these are just some of the terms applied to improving or remodelling a home. In recent years there has been a drive towards homeowners, or ‘wannabe’ homeowners, doing the work themselves. The DIY craze has always been around of course, mainly as a way to save money. But during the last decade or so, the scale and breadth of work undertaken by the average homeowner have increased. It’s why the likes of B&Q, Wickes and numerous other home improvement retailing companies have been so successful. Television has helped to scratch the itch vicariously for a number of years, but for some people, only the real thing will do.
Being in total control of every design decision, from what fixtures and fitting to install through to the depth of glass used for double glazing, can be a daunting task. Historically, many of these decisions have been taken by architects, structural engineers and project managers. So when you do it yourself, the learning curve can be extremely steep. The experts in their various fields will most likely still need to be consulted, but the bulk of the responsibility and decision making can be made by the homeowner.
The advent of the Internet has dramatically changed not only perceptions on what can be achieved but has also given access to resources that were previously out of touch to the man in the street. Now, if you’re willing to put in the research time, leg work and, of course, have access to the necessary finance, it’s all within reach.
As someone who photographs both residential and commercial property for a living, it’s always a joy to encounter a building that just screams ‘quality’. A recent commission by Self Build and Design magazine gave me the opportunity to photograph such a building. After two years of planning, preparation and the demolition of an existing home, this stunning self-build presents itself to the world.
If you would like to show off your pride and joy, not give me a shout via email or telephone. For more examples of property photography, take a look here The Bigger Picture and here Details with personality.