A mum was left gobsmacked when she was quoted over £2,000 to build a pergola – so she made her own to cut the cost.
Jasmine Gurney, from Biggleswade, put her DIY skills to the test to re-vamp her home.
She often shares videos on YouTube as Jasmine Gurney Oh Abode where she reveals some of her tips.
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The 29-year-old, who is a part-time head of content and social, told LatestDeals.co.uk: “I always wanted to build a pergola in my garden and turn my patio into a usable, sheltered space.
“I got a couple of quotes from local landscapers, but getting a professional job would have set me back around £2,200 for parts and labour.
“I was considering getting someone in to do it as I was pregnant at the time, and wasn’t sure I could manage the project, but the quote spurred me into action.”
She added: “Slatted panelling has been super popular over the last few years, with slatted fencing becoming the norm in modern garden design, so I took that concept and applied it to my pergola.
“I wanted the pergola to be 3.3m wide, in a lean-to style with a sloped roof for water run-off.
“I researched planning permissions before starting on the project.
“You do not need planning permission if you’re building within 2 metres of your boundary, and the pergola is a maximum of 2.5 metres high.
“If it’s 2 metres away from your house, it needs to be a maximum of 2 metres high, and if it’s a pitched roof it can be a maximum of four metres high at the tip.”
You do need permission sometimes though – like if you’re in a conservation area, if you’re building down the side of your house right up to your boundary line, if your house is listed, if it’s above the maximum heights, if it covers more than half of your land or if it’s on the front of your house.
After she made all the necessary checks, she picked up all the supplies she needed from her local lumber yard, including the lumber, concrete, screws and paint.
It all came it at the bargain price of £233.
She said: “To get started, I marked the height on the wall in pencil and made sure the sides were square with the house.
“I marked out where the patio needed to be cut so I could dig holes and cement the poles in.
“Then I marked the screw holes and used a circular saw to cut down the wood.
“I dug a hole 40cm deep and ensured it was three times the width of the post so there would be 10cm of concrete on each side.
“I factored in a 5% slope for my slanted roof for water run-off – eventually I will put a plastic roof on top.
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“I squared off again to ensure the posts would be in the right place, laying out the main frame.
“I marked the 40cm on the posts so I’d know the level at which to bury them.
“I cut all the ends and screw ends with timber cut end preserve, as it protects from rot, fungi and blue stain.
“I ended up covering the full 40cm just to be sure.”
She then worked hard to get it exactly as she wanted it and, once the frame was secure, she trimmed down the posts and applied the wood end preserver, before sanding all the wood down.
Once it was as she wanted it to be she painted it, but she recommends using two coats of paint if anyone fancies giving it a go.
Jasmine said: “As I was 26 weeks pregnant, it was a little difficult lifting the limber and climbing ladders with my bump getting in the way, but it was up and finished in one day.
“It’s a pretty straightforward project, that anyone can have a go at!”