Garden Offices

Helpful general information why you should seriously consider buying one

The numbers of people working from home have increased dramatically over the years, the reasons for this are various - the most popular two being either costs or to provide a better work/life balance. Whilst advances in technology have given many professional people the ability to work from other locations, craft based businesses are also finding working from home advantageous. It is also worth noting that around 70,000 people in the UK are now making a full time living by trading on eBay.

When planning your work space, consider the purpose of the building: storage; working area; layout etc. Working from home allows you to plan your own working environment. It should be both comfortable and appropriate to your specific needs. Work out the size of Garden Office you require to fulfil these criteria. You do not need to be an artist or a draughtsman but basic sketches are very helpful and allow you to plan the layout you require. We have people permanently on our show sites who are able to help and advise you.

The Costs

Firstly the initial purchase price of your garden office, you should also budget for groundwork to give your building an adequate base suitable for the size and design you choose. Fitting out to include electrical work or possibly plumbing and also any desks or storage you may require.

Ongoing cost would include the heating and lighting of the building plus a contingency for keeping the building maintained in good order.

The potential Savings

  • Commuting - By reducing your commuting you will save both time and money in petrol or train costs. Your impact on the environment will also reduce, whilst lowering your carbon footprint. The time saved could be spent working which would then provide greater earnings or spent on other pleasures. Just consider when you fill your tank or buy your season ticket - this is money you will never see again.
  • Tax - If you are VAT registered and the building is purchased by your company you should be able to recover the VAT content, in addition Garden Offices are defined by H.M.R.C. as "self contained relocatable buildings" - you would be able to write off the cost of your building over a number of years as a business expense. Please consult your accountant for further information on how this applies to your business.
  • Convenience - The ability to achieve the 60 second commute allows you to work when you wish or leave work unfinished for you to resume when convenient (no hot desking here)
  • Rent - If you are currently renting premises an immediate saving could be made, or if you are about to embark on a new venture by working from home you would avoid being committed to leasing a property for a number of years

Alternatives

  • Using a bedroom - You are not separating your working day from your home life. The window cleaner, milkman, children, etc. are all distractions that take you away from earning your living
  • Extending your home or converting your garage - Cost these alternatives with a quote from your builder and see for yourself how good value a purpose made Garden Office is
  • Moving house to a larger one with more space - Don't forget the larger house will not only mean a larger mortgage and increased council taxes - but the charges for H.I.P. stamp duty, estate agent fees, solicitors and removal are not recoverable

Case Studies

Below we are demonstrate three case studies of people using Garden Offices, but please take the time to sit down and work out your personal savings to see just how the purchase of one of these superb buildings could improve both your working environment and cash flow.

Study 1

Mr Smith travelled by car 5 days a week to his office, which was 20 miles from his home. He did this same journey 46 weeks each year and it took him approx 45 minutes on a good day but could be longer with traffic delays or bad weather.

5 x 40 miles round trip = 200 miles x 46 weeks = 9200 miles travelled
Mr Smith's car acheived around 38 MPG which equates to 242 gallons or 1100 litres of fuel. At around £1.29 per litre, this cost him £1419. Allowing for servicing, tyres, road tax, and the depreciation of his vehicle, this gave him an annual cost of £2807. Fortunately Mr Smith did not have to pay any parking charges otherwise the figure would be even higher (in total costing £4226 a year).

Saving him 1.5 hours commuting each day x 5 = 7.5 x 46weeks = 345 hours each year.
This gave him an extra 43 working days, which was 19% of his time - almost 1 extra day each week.

Mr Smith purchased a Garden Office for £6000 from GBC Group (including delivery and installation), his other costs for base and electrical work came to £1000 - making a total cost of £7000.

The building paid for itself in just over 18 months with the money he was saving, with the additional benefits of the time Mr Smith has saved. It has also incidentally added value has to his home.


Study 2

Mr Jevons lives in Milton Keynes and works for a finance company in London. He arrives at work at 9am and leaves at 5pm.

His day starts at 6am. He leaves home at 6.45 and drives to the train station, which takes him 15 minutes after parking his car (costing him £33 per week). He catches the 7.15 train and arrives at London Euston at 8.16 (his London Midland season ticket costs him £4140 per year). Although his journey is usually comfortable he is not guaranteed a seat. He allows 40 minutes to get the tube to his final destination of Cannon Street (his tube annual pass costs him £1104 per year) and he arrives at his office by 9am. His return journey starts when he leaves the office at 5pm and ends when he arrives home usually at 7.15pm.

He is away from home for 12 hours a day but only working for 8 of those hours - therefore wasting 20 hours every week. For his commuting costs he is paying parking fees of £1518 and his rail season ticket costs £5244 - giving him annual charges of £6762. All of which are paid from his taxed income!

The more he thought about it, the more certain he became that this had to change. After purchasing one of our Garden Offices Mr Jevons now works from home 3 days each week and only commutes for 2 days saving him over 50% of his costs and a considerable amount of stress.


Study 3

Mrs Davis had been a self employed chiropodist for 2 years, using two rooms in her home - one as a waiting room and the other for carrying out her practice. She had reached the stage where this was becoming difficult and if she were to continue to grow her business, she would need to either move to a larger house or rent a commercial property. She wanted to continue working from home as she had 2 small children and it was convenient to arrange her appointments around her family commitments. She also felt the rent/rates on a commercial property were above her means.

The next thing she did was to look into the possibility of moving house. Her home was valued at £265,000 and the estate agents fees for selling it came to £4638. She estimated that she would need to increase her mortgage by £90,000 to get the larger house she needed. The other charges she identified were for stamp duty on the new property (estimated to be £10650) as well as removal costs of £670 and solicitors fees of £900. All in all she figured out it would cost her in excess of £16,000 to move, plus the ongoing charges for increased mortgage.

By chance Mrs Davis visited her local garden centre one weekend and saw the GBC Group range of Garden Offices. She designed her own building with the help of the staff on site. It was to be partitioned into 2 sections to provide a waiting area and treatment room. The ability to place doors and windows where she chose allowed her to see the best views of her garden whilst keeping an eye on the house. Because the building is fully insulated and double glazed she was able to install her computer and business records therefore freeing up valuable space within her home.

Please click here to see our full range of garden offices.

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