8 Sure-Fire Tips for Building a Granny Flat

Have you been hoping to create a comfortable living space for a grandparent, a friend or a roommate? If so, it is a good idea to take a look at eight sure-fire tips which will help to ensure that your project starts off in the right direction.

Realising the Possibilities

You should first learn to recognise the potential of this renovation. For example, take a look around your home and property to determine what options are available. If you are able to appreciate the choices at your disposal, it is much easier to make an informed decision.

All About Preparation
Take a look at local building and planning regulations. This can help you to avoid any snags during the renovation itself. It is just as wise to speak with at least three contractors to become aware of how much the project will cost. Other useful tips include informing your neighbours that construction will soon begin and to use a rubbish removal service, like 1300Rubbish to clear debris that will add up as the project progresses.

Take Your Time
Patience is certainly a virtue in regards to any home renovation. This very same concept if just as relevant when building a granny flat. Prepare for slight delays and do not expect the entire project to be completed overnight. If you can adopt a more flexible and calm mindset, dealing with any unexpected issues will be much easier.

Plumbing and Sanitation Concerns
It is often what takes place "behind the scenes" that can result in challenging issues. Some would argue that implementing a cost-effective and efficient plumbing system is the most daunting task. Think about the requirements of the flat in question as well as what types of plumbing solutions make the most sense. Having said this, it is also wise to consult with a professional. In many cases, you are required by law to employ a certified plumber. He or she will be able to highlight the options at your disposal as well as any restrictions that may be present.

What About a Kitchen?
If possible, try to include a basic walk-in kitchen within the granny flat. This is important for two reasons. First, the user will be provided with an extra sense of comfort and convenience. Let's also not fail to mention that self-contained kitchens will vastly increase the value of the flat as well as your property as a whole.

As you might be dealing with a relatively small amount of space, try to embrace a rather minimalist design within the granny flat and look for ways to maximise your space. For example, white tones on the walls and ceiling will provide the illusion of light. While the furniture should be utilitarian and comfortable, keep the number of pieces to a minimum. The room might otherwise begin to feel stifling and cramped.

Ample Storage Space
It is also prudent to implement innovative storage solutions. Examples can include (but are certainly not limited to) a sofa that folds out into a bed, vertical shelving to save space and an ample number of cupboards within the kitchen area.

Privacy Issues
Granny flats should be provided with a sense of privacy. Separate door locks, key-less entry systems and shrubbery to hide any ground-floor windows will all enhance the appeal of the location. While the flat is still part of your house, these elements can provide a "separate but equal" appeal.

Building a granny flat from scratch is a great way to accommodate the needs of another individual and this space will add to the overall resale value of your property. Be sure to keep the recommendations above in mind so that the no snags are encountered along the way.


Also make sure there is separate electricity and water supply and meters from the main residence.

If building a granny flat from scratch, I think another thing to consider is long-term accessibility ... in case health issues ever result in the need for a wheelchair. The build could include a flat or ramped entry, wider doorways, wet shower and a kitchen/kitchenette that allows for easy maneuverability ... just in case.


And NO Steps RnR;  We built one from scratch in 1993 for husbands parents that came out from Hampshire. it was more of a villa 98sqm in space with a demarkation zone!  The Laundry, it was a big long Laundry but that was the requirement from the Council.

Everything under the main roof, lived there for 18 years;  they passed away then my late widowed mum joined us for two years.

Oh another thing no low ovens; I see them time and again and it is a big no no.  Same as microwave ovens under the bench;  I think Mirowave ovens under the bench in family homes are a no no too, very dangerous with young children.




I don't think the above granny flat looks too safe to me. Firstly the bed seems too high, poor old granny would topple out on her way to the bathroom, and that seat in front of the computer certainly needs a backing, granny could fall on her arse and could break her hip, and those cupboards are way too high. Looks more like a teenagers room. 

Have to agree Hola about the photo in the original post. Not for oldies IMO.

So many more appropriate designs around.

:) Easy to access, easy to rise and shine in these LOL.

RnR - I really love those granny flats - we all need a little comfort as we get older.

It would be helpful if granny was an ex-submariner and was used to having very few possessions - only her soft duffle bag.

There is a much easier way to build a granny flat if the backyard has the space. Buy a transportable home and have it delivered, plumbed and electricity connected. It has all of the requirements for separate living but close enough to the main house if needed. But wait, there's more! When the granny flat is no longer required there are a couple of choices, rent it out for a bit of extra income or sell it off for a good return on the original outlay.

Yep that's a strange looking granny flat in the original post. Does granny roll outa bed or what? And how does gran sit on that thingy in front of the desk?


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