We have the answers to the most commonly asked questions about living spaces. If your question isn’t answered below or you need further clarification, speak to one of our friendly advisors today.
What's the difference between a conservatory, orangery and an extension?

This is probably our most asked question of all time! It isn’t the easiest to answer because the definitions have become blurred in recent times. Your living space can now be whatever you would like it to be – so you can create something which is a mixture of all three.

Conventionally, a conservatory is predominantly made from glass with a glass roof and walls. For homeowners who want a view of their garden or patio, a conservatory may appear like the obvious choice. Now, a tiled roof conservatory is another option, along with dwarf walls, which allow you to add extra warmth and comfort to your space. However, you shouldn’t worry about our modern glazing as it has solar control built in, ensuring your conservatory is comfortable throughout the year.

Modern Orangery

There is typically more brickwork or the inclusion of aluminium pillars when it comes to a conventional orangery. This gives homeowners more privacy, warmth and gives off a more lavish feel. They will often have a pelmet around the roof, further adding to the thermal efficiency of the orangery. For the style of roof, that’s up to you. You could select a glass lantern roof, solid tiled roof or something in between the two.

A home extension should feel like a harmonious extension of your current property. Often incorporating more brickwork to create a solid feel, most will have a solid tiled roof. However, the roof can also be a hybrid mix between a solid roof and a glass roof, by adding full length glass panels and Velux windows. This will bring more sunlight into the space and increase ventilation. One of the main reasons a homeowner chooses an extension is for their useability – they stay comfortably cosy throught the seasons.

Tiled Roof Orangery Extension Internal Detail
Should I choose a tiled roof or a glass roof for my new living space?

Before choosing which kind of roof is right for your living space, you should consider exactly how you plan to use your room, the direction it faces and your budget. A glass roof will provide you with increased natural light and impressive views of the sky above and our solar control glazing will ensure it doesn’t overheat in the summer or freeze in the winter.

If you are imagining a space that can be used every day throughout the year, a solid tiled roof could be the ideal choice. We can even incorporate full length glass panels and/or Velux windows to your solid roof, creating a hybrid roof between the two and enjoying the energy efficiency of a solid roof with the natural light of a glass roof.

Speak to us – we can advise you on what to contemplate before choosing between the two, including budget considerations.

Tiled Roof Conservatory


Don’t hesitate to speak to one of our advisors if you have any questions. You may well find the answer you’re looking for below, amongst our common questions.

Will it be too hot in summer and too cool in winter?

A County living space has been designed to be used in every season. You no longer need to worry about outdated polycarbonate roofs turning your conservatory into an unbearable greenhouse. With solar control glazing, you can be confident that your extension is going to be a comfortable temperature at all times. If you are especially concerned about the useability of your living space in more extreme weather, we recommend you consider a tiled roof.

Do you manufacture your own roofs?

Yes. We are part of the Conservatory Outlet group of companies. Conservatory Outlet is an established UK wide network of home improvement companies, specialising in the installation of superior quality roofs and living spaces.

As ambassadors of the Conservatory Outlet brand – County Group in Sussex & Kent has demonstrated an unrivalled commitment to quality, innovation and customer satisfaction. In return Conservatory Outlet provides the County Group with the most revolutionary and sought after home improvement products currently available, which are produced to the highest industry standards.

Can I choose different roof tiles to match my home?

Yes, that is not a problem at all! Our roof tiles come in a wide choice of colours and finishes, ensuring your new roof matches perfectly with your home. We can incorporate down lighting and even roof ventilation in any manner you wish. Speak to a County advisor for more information.

There is talk about energy efficient windows everywhere at the moment! What do 'A' rated windows mean?

A rated windows are highly energy efficient. In fact, they are the most energy efficient windows on the market in the UK, as defined by the BFRC Rating Scheme, the UK’s national system. The rating is recognised within Building Regulations as a way to show adherence to their rules regarding energy efficiency.

By using a consumer-friendly traffic-light rating system (A-E), it is simple for you as the consumer to make more knowledgeable decisions in order to create a more efficient home and reduce your heating bills.

It is a similar system to what you find on ‘white’ goods, which include washing machines, fridges and freezers.

What is solar control glazing?

In order to stop your home from overheating, solar control glazing gets to work. Not only will it restrict excessive heat from the sun being transmitted into your home, it also prevents internal heat from exiting your home. You’ll find a selection of tinted glazing options which provide diverse levels of light transmission and heat retention. Ask a County advisor for additional details.

Can you match the new bricks to my existing bricks?

It won’t be difficult finding a colour to help match the bricks to your house as we have many options – all of which promise high performance during their lifetime. We will look through our options and find the closest match, although you should note that there could be weathering and manufacturing differences between the old and new bricks. If you are not content with the closest match, there is an option of getting your new bricks tinted for an even closer match. However, this comes at an additional cost.

Do I need Building Regulations Approval?

Most likely, yes. Most extensions do need approval under Building Regulations. However, there are numerous classes of extensions which don’t. County will send a surveyor over to you to let you know what the requirements are for your extension. We will also arrange Building Regulations for you by approaching the relevant local authority, so you don’t have to worry about anything.

Do I need planning permission?

An extension or addition to your house is considered to be permitted development, not requiring an application for planning permission, subject to certain conditions are met, typically these are:

  • The ground area covered by the extension and any other buildings within the boundary of the property, excluding the original house, is not more than half the total area of the property.
  • Any part of the extension is not higher than the highest part of the roof of the existing house.
  • The eaves of the extension are not higher than the eaves of the existing house.
  • Any part of the extension does not extend beyond any wall facing a road if it forms the principal or side elevation of the original house.
  • The eaves are no more than 3 metres in height if any part of the extension is within 2 metres of the property boundary.
  • The materials used in exterior work, except in the case of a conservatory, are of similar appearance to the existing house.
  • An upper floor window on a side elevation within 15 metres of a boundary with another house is obscure glazed; and is non – opening unless the parts which can be opened are more than 1.7 metres above the floor of the room in which the window is installed.
  • A side extension does not exceed 4 metres in height or be wider than half the width of the original house.
  • In a single storey extension
    • the extension does not extend beyond the rear wall of the original house by more than 4 metres for a detached house or 3 metres for any other type of house;
    • the height of the extension does not exceed 4 metres;
    • no part of the extension is within 3.5 metres of any property boundary with a road opposite the rear wall of the house.
  • In an extension with more than one storey
    • the extension does not extend beyond the rear wall of the original house by more than 3 metres;
    • no part of the extension is within 7 metres of the property boundary opposite the rear wall of the house;
    • the roof pitch of the enlargement is as far as practicable the same as that of the original house.
  • If you live in a house within a conservation area, World Heritage Site, area of outstanding natural beauty or National Park-
    • no part of the exterior of the house is clad with stone, artificial stone, pebbledash, render, timber, plastic or tiles;
    • the extension is not more than 1 storey or 4 metres in height;
    • no part of the extension extends beyond a principal or side elevation of the original house

Can you give me an idea of how long it will take for you to build my living space?

We will be unable to give you an accurate timeline at this stage as it depends on planning requirements and how complex the project will be. Speak to a County advisor or request a copy of our ‘What happens next’ document for an idea on the timeline.

What is a test dig?

A test dig is completed when we check the local ground conditions to see if they are suitable for a standard concrete base and foundation. This will take place before beginning the project. If the ground isn’t suitable, we can give guidance on alternative foundations. This could be a specialist pile foundation or concrete raft.

What is the purpose of a cavity tray?

The reasoning for a cavity tray is to prevent moisture from appearing in your extension. It is a number of high level damp proof courses to bridge a wall cavity. This will direct moisture to the external face of a wall.

Do you offer finance to help me pay for for my new living space?

Yes. To make life easy for you, County can arrange a variety of affordable and convenient easy payment finance options (subject to application & status). Applying for finance is simple and we promise you a quick decision. Everything can be sorted out with you in the comfort of your home or at your local County Showroom, so you can enjoy whatever you’ve set your heart on right away.

What do we need to do when our finance is approved?

If you’re arranging your own finance, you’ll need to call us as soon as you get the go ahead. If you’re taking up one of our offers, the company will tell us both directly, so there’s no need to call as we will get in touch with you.

What happens if finance is refused?

Finance companies can turn down people for lots of reasons, for example if you’ve moved several times over the past few years. In these circumstances, we always do our best to help and sometimes it’s worth trying another provider, especially if they know you.

I’ve applied for finance with County. How long will approval take?

Sometimes our finance company will say ‘yes’ almost immediately and on other occasions it may take them a few days. This short delay can be for any number of reasons and you should not be unduly concerned.


See how affordable your home improvement can be with our Finance Calculator.
  • BUY NOW PAY MONTHLY Buy now and choose to pay monthly over 60, 120 or 154 months...
  • BUY NOW PAY LATER Buy now and pay nothing for 9 months...
60 monthly payments
Representative APR
120 monthly payments
Representative APR
154 monthly payments
Representative APR
This finance option allows you the convenience and flexibility of spreading the cost of your home improvements over 60, 120 or 154 months*. You must make the minimum repayment each month. However you can also make additional payments and therefore control the length of the loan and the amount of interest you would pay. No security is required on these loans. These calculators are for illustrative purposes only and do not constitute a credit quotation. *120 & 154 months finance only available for orders over £8,000.

Representative Example

Cash Price
Total Amount of Credit
Duration of Agreement
60 Months
Rate of Interest
12.4% p.a. fixed
Representative APR
12.4% APR
60 Monthly Payments
Total Amount Payable
Pay within 9 months
Want to pay in monthly instalments after 9 months rather than one-off payment? Consider this option.
120 monthly payments
Representative APR over 10 years
Pay a 25% deposit when you order, and as long as you pay the outstanding balance in full before 9 months has elapsed plus a £29 exit fee, no interest will be charged. If, after 9 months, this is not convenient, you can pay in 120 monthly installments at 19.9% APR Representative. *Deferred for 9 months from the date of completion – £29 exit fee applies if the loan is repaid in full during the deferral period and NO INTEREST will be paid. If the loan is not settled in full within the deferral period, then interest will have accrued from the start of the agreement on any amount still outstanding at the end of the deferral period. Interest will continue to be charged until the agreement is repaid in full. For legal reasons the Representative Example shows interest IF the outstanding balance is NOT paid before the 9 months has elapsed. No security is required on this loan. These calculators are for illustrative purposes only and do not constitute a credit quotation.

Representative Example

Cash Price
Total Amount of Credit
Defer By
9 Months*
120 Months
Rate of Interest
19.9% p.a. fixed
Representative APR
19.9% APR
129 Months*
120 Monthly Payments
Total Amount Payable
Settlement Fee


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