Despite the city being small, Hong Kong has a densely packed population where most people live in confined and overcrowded apartments. The property prices in the city centre are soaring sky-high, but the living conditions remain almost uncomfortably compact. As a result, many people have turned to live in village houses in suburban areas that offer more spacious living environments with picturesque scenery.
When it comes to renovation and interior design, the safety regulations for village houses vary significantly from regular city apartments. In this blog, we will explore 4 tips for renovating village houses, so you can create a capacious living environment while complying with local laws and regulations.
The load-bearing wall forms the solid foundation of the village house and is pivotal for supporting the entire structure. Removing this wall could result in severe structural damage to your property. If you are planning to change the layout of your home, you should always seek the guidance of an interior designer and a contractor to identify the load-bearing wall. Alternatively, you could gently knock on the wall to test — a deeper sound indicates a load-bearing wall. This simple tip might save you a lot of hassle from having to refresh your home layout in the long run.
Village houses usually have a staircase connecting the upper and lower floor. Many landlords prefer transforming their village house into a luxurious duplex interior design by modifying or adding staircases. However, before undertaking such changes, you must first obtain approval from the Buildings Department. You may otherwise be prosecuted for violating the construction laws.
In a typical city apartment, you usually only find one electric box installed, meaning that in the event of a power failure or outage, all that needs inspecting is just that one box. However, in multi-floor village houses witha single electric box on one floor, residents may have to navigate stairs in pitch darkness when the electricity goes out. A much better solution is to install an electric box on each floor to allow for easy inspection of any power supply issues that may arise.
Making use of rooftops has become an increasingly popular trend in modern village houses. Be it a garden, a barbecue yard, or even an exercise space, there is no limit to the potential that can be unlocked. However, as with all things in life, there are regulations to adhere to; and when it comes to rooftop decorations and renovations, the Buildings Department has some pretty strict rules. To avoid falling into the trap of unauthorised building works (UBWs), it's essential to consult a professional renovation company and familiarise yourself with the government's guidelines. A common example is a garden, where trellises are not allowed to be covered and enclosed on all sides, and are not allowed to be taller than 2.5 metres.
As an award-winning interior design company in Hong Kong, inT Design boasts a team of designers and consultants to provide you with personalised design services, envisaging an ideal village house tailored to personal styles and needs. Get in touch with us to transform your village house into an extravagant mansion for unwinding and spending quality time with family and friends. We are more than happy to hear about your design ideas.