The minimalist approach to your flat conversion…

The cost of purchasing a property within London has sky-rocketed within this decade and shows no signs of slowing down. A smart solution, from relocating, would be to make use of what you have by maximising your available space… I have listed 7 simple steps below to help optimize your flat conversion.

1. Establish a line of view.

Imagine you have just entered your home, look straight ahead and take a mental note of what is preventing you from seeing the rear wall of your property.

Now, look left or right and do the same.

At this point, you may be noted furniture, staircase, wall and so on.

2. Use your knuckle. 

The aim is to remove as many obstacles as you can to create a clear view from one end of your home to the other.

Now, with your knuckle, gently knock the walls that you have selected to hear the noise they make.

If it is a hollow echo, it may be a partition stud wall which can be inexpensively removed.

If you hear a thudding sound then it may be a load-bearing structural wall which can also be removed at a higher cost however it will require further inspection.

3. Add an extension. 

Now that you have established a clear line of view, you may have the opportunity to extend your home if you are located on the ground floor of a premise with a rear extension allowing you to create a greater distance.

5. Create a larger opening.

When designing the extension, it is key to create as many openings as possible in relation to the solar orientation and visibility of your neighbours.

This can be in the form of:

  • Skylights
  • French & bi-folding doors
  • Ground to ceiling windows
  • Standard windows

LET’S RECAP: You should have now removed all unnecessary walls within your flat and extended the shell to create a greater line of view from the front to rear and side to side.

6. Contour with paint.

Now we have created the shell of the refurbishment, it is time to focus on the soft furnishing.

As a rule of thumb with paint, you should opt for paler tones to help reduce hard lines and allow the natural light to bounce off of the walls.

After you have selected the shade you would like for the walls, compliment this tone by painting the ceiling white.

Similar to contouring facial features with makeup, this effect can also be used for your interior by making the ceiling appear higher.

And, finally…

7. Use of mirrors.

At this point, we have created a de-cluttered, open plan, bright space that has been refined with the use of pale shades to create a larger appearing flat.

Now you can multiply the impact of the each step above by cleverly placing mirrors.

Establish which wall has the most openings, typically the rear, and line the opposite end with wide mid-level mirrors.

Ready to take it one step further? Transfer your mental notes onto your tablet and email over your sketch to with the subject title ‘Optimize my Flat Conversion’, we will then be able to help you structure your thoughts into a tangible proposal. 


Semsettin Karahan is the architectural designer at Zanoply Ltd. As a graduate of the Oxford School of Architecture, Semsettin has been shortlisted and featured in a number of exhibitions; publications. He worked for the top architects within London as a designer and an associate director on a range of design builds ranging from residential to commercial projects. At the age of 22, Semsettin secured his first private planning permission for a residential flat conversion. A year later he became the youngest designer in London to proposed and construct a new-build dwelling. Semsettin’s attention for detail derives from his 7 years of experience within the design industry from being the Editor at OSA, Photographer at Cowley News and leading installation builds as a set designer, product designer for film companies and International drinks manufacturers.

©2023 Zanoply Ltd Reserves All Rights Company Registered in England and Wales. Company Number: 10681668. Registered Office: Building 3, Chiswick Park, 566 Chiswick High Road, London, W4 5YA. Our publications are intended as a guide only and not as an accurate statement of law. Calls may be recorded for training and quality purposes. Zanoply Ltd


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