Project type

Ultra-contemporary low-profile four-bedroom house on a modestly sized garden site


Holmwood Close SM2

Local Authority

Epsom and Ewell Borough Council

Plot Type


Project Type

New Build House


Construction of a 4-bedroom dwelling house

Services by Urbanist Architecture

Project Architect, Planning Consultant


Experienced property developers with several projects under their belts, our clients were aiming for a high ROI on their next undertaking. They saw an opportunity to develop a four-bedroom new build house on a small plot in the garden of an existing property, and wanted to get planning permission for a separate dwelling in the garden.

We began by assessing the challenges that lay ahead. The garden was tiny and there was a lot we would have to take into account, particularly the garage belonging to the original house to the front of the proposed development. At the rear of the small plot, there are train tracks and a utility station that would require a right of way going through the new development.

The local planning policy favoured the construction of larger family dwellings, meaning that any design would need to have an unobtrusive profile and low impact on the area but would also provide plenty of family living space.



If you do have a space on a small plot to build, it can provide you with a very healthy return on investment. Getting planning permission for a separate house on a small garden plot, though, isn’t always easy. We knew that we had to make the most efficient possible use of the available space and create design solutions to ensure a high quality of living for future residents as well as a high ROI for our client.

Because we were designing a new separate house on a small plot which is in the garden of an existing home, we had to provide sufficient space for comfortable living without creating a tall structure. So instead of building up, we built down. We created a basement with three bedrooms: one master bedroom with a walk-in wardrobe and an en-suite, one double bedroom and one single bedroom. We also included a utility room and bathroom, easily accessible from all areas.

For the basement, we needed to ensure extensive natural daylight for the bedrooms so we hired a sunlight consultant whose expertise made a key contribution to the final design. The ground-level open-plan kitchen-dining-living space has front-facing windows to provide light-filled views.

By overcoming the limitations of a site that is small for this kind of project and spotting innumerable opportunities, we created an exceptionally high quality, luxurious home, which meant maximum ROI and increased property value for our clients, and a great place for a family to live.

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