A new consumer generation

Chris Cooke of Prefix Systems looks at the inspiration behind Urbanroom, a glazed extension designed for future generations and those of us looking for a more contemporary extended living space. It’s also designed to attract a new type of consumer.

When we look at the conservatory installations of 1980s and 90s, which have been graced with wicker furniture en masse across the UK in the past, it’s very much a style from yesteryear. So how can modern day living be embraced in glazed extensions? Well it’s something that’s been on our radar for several years now and we’ve used customer feedback as a platform to our Urbanroom development, which has been well received by installation companies since its launch earlier this year.

It’s clear that consumers are no longer looking for a quick fix to add valuable living space. Instead, they are looking to extend their homes into a new additional environment that sets the tone for the rest of the home in terms of style and functionality. As the market continues to evolve, we begin to blur the boundary of what was once typically a conservatory installation, in to what is now a modern extension, which was originally the domain of the small builder.

Proof of this is the success of our Warmroof system and shows that higher ticket projects are a growth area for the industry and are likely to be so for the longer term.

Consumers are looking to invest in their homes now for the long-term with the previous seven-year average before moving now increasing by a number of years. Economic, social and political variables have all had an impact on this growing trend. The need for additional space – but installed for an agreed upfront price, rather than an estimate from a builder for an unquantifiable number of weeks work – means off-site construction methods are now more accepted than ever before.

This approach is ultimately where our industry will win out over the traditional builder in terms of transparent pricing and installation with limited disruption.

Urbanroom perfectly fits this scenario. It offers all the light and space of a conservatory yet with a featured deep section gutter shroud and the representation of a design-led room with full height glazing and, in many instances, brick piers. Colour is also an important factor with anthracite grey the most likely standard offering, though we’ve got access to literally hundreds of different RAL finishes and the full quality control of our own dedicated aluminium manufacturing unit within the group. The perfect bespoke full kit aluminium glazed extension.

It’s also a room for all seasons when typically glazed with solar control glass, while the insulated pelmet and brick piers add considerable insulation to the overall structure. There is also a growing trend towards full height glazing as we see fewer dwarf walls used in installations, in keeping with modern design practice. Ultimately, Urbanroom promotes the use of larger expanses of glazed areas, minimal lines and maximum performance.

At Prefix Systems we are able to offer a complete range of aluminium windows, doors, bifolding doors, patio doors etc, with standard colours available in a quick turnaround. To back up our customers buying aluminium through Prefix Systems, we have our four branches providing technical and delivery support across the whole of the UK.

More consumers will continue to view their extended living space as the flagship room, dictating style and design throughout the home. Urbanroom will attract this new type of consumer looking for a glazed extension to the home by providing great designer appeal thanks to new materials, a stunning gutter shroud, and the adoption of larger areas of glass.