Patrick Barrett, a Leeds architect, has fulfilled the dream shared by many of his contemporaries – to build his own home to a specific design and without compromise. The new home combines high tech features with a limited budget, creating an environmentally friendly building that is low cost to maintain. The property has double insulation levels, underfloor heating and windows that prevent condensation and retain heat.
Planning permission proved to be the toughest obstacle, although Barrett was finally granted the authority to demolish the gatehouse which had previously stood on the land. Although Leeds City Council wanted Patrick to build a Victorian style home, he maintained his wish to build a 21st century house that would complement his first build, which had a contemporary style.
Construction costs amounted to £330,000 and Barrett project managed the work himself, along with the design of the property. Each of the four bedrooms in the house is en-suite, while the downstairs is open plan. The windows have thermal blinds which have been programmed to lower when it gets too bright. Additionally, the underfloor heating has been computerised along with the lighting system.
The house has some interesting features, including a laundry chute which goes from the upstairs to the utility room. A hidden room has also been installed, which could be used as a panic room in the event of intruders entering the home. Electric underfloor heating is often incorporated to a high specification in new, energy conscious homes.