Do I Need a Fireplace in My New Home?
You’ve found the beautiful new home of your dreams, but there’s one thing that’s bothering you - why is there no fireplace?
Indeed, today many new build homes in the UK don’t have a chimney stack or fireplace. This might seem a little strange, since real, period fireplaces are becoming more and more sought after!
So, what can you do if your otherwise perfect new home doesn’t have the fireplace you’d hoped for?
Well, there are still plenty of options for you! Our blog has some tips and advice...
Why do new homes not have a fireplace?
Once upon a time, it was assumed that your living room would have a nice big fireplace in the middle.
However, as time progressed, so did our heating options. When central heating systems became more accessible to all in the 1970s, people started to turn their backs on messy open fireplaces and electric fires.
So, are radiators the reason why new homes tend to be fireplace free these days?
Well, partly. Building a chimney adds to the cost of a new house, so to keep them affordable, they are often left out.
In addition to this is the fact that many new builds are designed to be as efficient as possible. More recent building regulations now require homes to meet minimum levels of airtightness. This means that drafty old-fashioned chimneys are no longer preferred.
Then there comes the issue of air pollution. Domestic open fires are highly inefficient and release a lot of particulate matter into the air, which can cause public health problems. So, it’s no longer encouraged for us to burn solid fuel unless it’s in a stove that meets certain eco standards.
Do you need a fireplace in a living room?
Just because your new home doesn't have one, that doesn’t mean you can never again enjoy the comfort of a fireplace in your living room ever again.
Installing a balanced flue gas fire, flueless gas fire or an electric fireplace are all fantastic options that can easily be fitted without an existing chimney. They are both also efficient and produce no or minimal amounts of emissions, so they are less harmful to the environment than open fires.
In fact, one of the benefits of a new build is that you can choose the fireplace that suits you completely from scratch - so, no making do with an ugly old fireplace that got left behind by the previous owner!
The question is, should you? Do you need a fireplace in your new living room?
The reasons for fitting a new fireplace…
If you have a new build, it’s highly likely that it is more energy efficient than a house built 20 years ago. It will probably be airtight and well insulated to keep as much heat inside as possible.
Nevertheless, you might still want to feel the benefit of a fireplace through the cooler months. Often, it might not be worth firing up your whole central heating if your whole household is together in the living room. Or, you might want a boost of heat before your radiators come on at their set time.
Whatever the reason, a gas or electric fireplace is a fantastically efficient option. Electric fires are incredibly clean and produce no emissions - you don’t even need a chimney to install one!
Balanced flue gas fires are also among the most efficient of gas fires. This is because they come with their own flue system which simply fits through your wall. The pipe draws in air from outside, so the front of the fire is sealed off, meaning heat isn’t lost through a chimney.
You can find out more about how balanced flues work here.
A focal point for the room
There’s no denying that a fireplace makes the ultimate focal point to your room. They are the perfect place where the whole house can come together, warm up and enjoy each other's company, too.
A fireplace can be the lynchpin to your room layout. We even have a whole blog with some tips on how to arrange your furniture around your TV and fireplace!
Elevate your home decor
Without a fireplace, you might feel as though your room is missing something. Indeed, for many of us nothing quite finishes off the look and feel of a room like a roaring fire.
The great thing about gas and electric fires is that they come in so many different shapes and styles.
For example, did you know that you can get an electric cast iron fire? Or, why not take a look at our hole in the wall balanced flue gas fires? You could even be amazed by our stunning three-sided electric fireplaces!
The reasons against fitting a new fireplace…
One of the main reasons we hear of people foregoing a fireplace is to save on space. In fact, some older homes even make the decision to remove their entire chimney breast.
We know that space is a priority for many homes, so a big, traditional fireplace might not be worth it.
However, we have so many small fireplace ideas that are perfect for those looking to keep their fire compact. In fact, if you want to take up no floor space at all, then a hole in the wall gas fire or a wall mounted electric fire could be the ideal solution. So, you can have the benefits of both a cosy fire and maximum floor space!
Yes, fireplaces offer a focal point for you to arrange your furniture around. But some people find one particular issue a challenge - where do you put your TV when you have a fireplace?
One way around this is to consider putting it over your fireplace. Of course, you need to make all necessary safety checks first to ensure that you won’t cause any dangerous damage to your television. But, with electric fires offering low heat settings that project heat forward into the room, it is a possibility.
If you want to find out more, read our whole blog on whether you can put a TV over a fireplace!
Are you looking for a fireplace for your new home? See our full range of gas fires and electric fires online now at Direct Fireplaces
Enjoy FREE UK mainland delivery and our flexible finance options too!
More fireplace advice from our blog…