Living the dream at home

Designing and building a perfect home from scratch may be some people’s dream but it has become reality for Richard and Helen Anderson.

The couple have told in a recent story in the Daily Telegraph how they built their property from scratch and have watched it rise in value to £1.45m.

An architect by trade, Richard had the expertise to kickstart the project in an old 1950s bungalow in Oxfordshire. They demolished the house and set to work.

Now they have an enviable open-plan property with glazed walls inside and out, timber balconies and skylights yet with a traditional exterior to fit into its rural setting.

The Andersons intentionally kept the project stylish, relatively modest and in keeping with their surrounding so it would be easy to sell when the time comes.

A project of this magnitude and cost may well be beyond most of us, yet it can offer a few simple lessons when it comes to home improvements such as new kitchens and extensions: plan carefully and think of how they may affect the look and value of the house in the medium to long term, especially if you do plan to move at some stage.

The Anderson’s dream home was a recent winner of the Best Traditional Style Self Build in The Daily Telegraph Homebuilding and Renovating Awards.

Visit to see their home online.