If you can extend the theme by being able to glide seamlessly into your garden, you’ve conquered the unstoppable trend for open-plan living. Felicity Blair, of East Dulwich estate agents Roy Brooks, explains the perks of this property design

Open-plan layouts are one of the most common features of modern property design, with kitchen/diners being a popular modification. It’s one of the most requested-for features when people are eyeing up their next purchase and if they don’t find a home with this layout already in place, they make it top of the to-do list when they’ve moved in.

For a relatively small building cost, a kitchen/diner can transform the way you live and interact with the rest of the household. The property pictured above, a five-bedroom home on Canonbie Road, Forest Hill SE23, is a prime example of this trend (it’s currently on the market with us for £1,350,000).

The wider the footprint of your house the better, as you can sometimes gain both dining and reclining spaces overlooking your garden. By installing as many French, concertina or bi-fold doors as possible, you bridge the gap between indoor and outdoor spaces and can glide seamlessly between the two, which makes for a great entertaining space during the summer months.


This four-bedroom property on Ringmore Rise, Forest Hill SE23, nails the open-plan living trend. It’s on the market with Roy Brooks for £1,250,000

Large windows are a must in these new spaces. The more of the outside you bring in, the more you’ll increase the perceived scale of the room. If you’re building a single-story extension, be sure to add skylights – or go the whole hog with a fully glazed roof.

Architecturally elite homes across the channel sometimes have kitchens that extend out under rear verandas for the ultimate open-plan, open-air lifestyle. Back in south London, we are beginning to see this trend emerge in a few select properties. Families who can shoulder the upheaval (and relatively much higher cost) of major works, and the most thoughtful property developers we’ve met, are removing more walls to create fully fluid areas with cooking, dining and reclining zones in place of rooms.

The four-bedroom house on Ringmore Rise SE23, pictured above, shows just how to bring the outdoors in (it’s currently on the market with us for £1,250,000). When an entire floor of your house is open plan, you feel very differently about the space you are moving around in, it’s quite liberating.