Bungalow homes are the quintessentially British home. Conceived by Indian builders in Bengal in the 18th century, copies first appeared in south London in 1860.
The idea took hold and during the 1920s manufacturers exported pre-fabricated versions in large numbers to America, South Africa, Canada, Australia and even back to India. Yet the irony is that while the bungalow thrives and multiplies elsewhere, here in the U.K. it is on the verge of extinction.
Pre-fabricated versions of bungalow homes were introduced as an answer to quickly and cheaply provide quality housing as a replacement for the housing destroyed during the war.
Those who were re-housed in them came to love them. Many local authority's have tried to replace them over recent years, with traditional housing, but have had to bow to public pressure and refurbish them instead to bring them up to current housing standards.
Over the years property developers have shied away from building bungalows because they have a much bigger footprint of the traditional two storey house. With building land at a premium here in the U.K. bungalow developments are few and far between and consequently usually cost more a square foot of living space than other types of housing.
Yes this is the type of home that makes British people happier than any other, according to a survey by the Social Issues Research Centre conducted on behalf of Halifax Insurance.
You either love them or hate them apparently. But those who live in them would rarely want to go back to a traditional house.
Younger homeowners tend to dismiss them wanting more contemporary living yet they are probably the most flexible of housing.
Because the living space is all on one level homeowners can easily turn a bedroom into a dining room or study or sacrifice a living room for a further bedroom.
They are also probably the easiest of homes to extend by turning the attic space into further bedrooms for growing families. If mobility becomes a problem they can easily be adapted by widening doorways to accommodate wheelchairs.
If you would like further information on making home improvements for disabled living here are two websites than can help.
If you're yearning to do away with the hassle of stairs either because of mobility problems or simply to make life easier a bungalow is worth considering. The alternative one level iving accommodation is an apartment.
However if you're a keen gardener, or simply want your own outside space to sit in and enjoy, choosing an apartment usually means sacrificing the garden.
Bungalow homes are easier to maintain. For example you can clean your own windows externally without climbing up ladders or employing window cleaners. No stairs to vacume or deep stairwells to decorate.
There are retirement developments that offer residents a choice of bungalow homes. In fact many of these are available to anyone over 55 years of age. These are often more reasonably priced and may have options for part ownership which cuts the cost even more.
These types of developments usually have a strong community that people enjoy.
You have to be a little more aware of security with a bungalow home.
In a traditional house the bedrooms are usually on the 1st floor and we feel quite safe leaving the bedroom window open at night, but with bedrooms on the ground floor you have to be more aware of security.
However with modern double glazed windows and doors this can easily be overcome.
There are also other factors that perhaps you should take into account when considering buying a bungalow.
There are lots of security products that are available on the market to ensure you stay safe and protect your home.
Other articles on retirement properties.