The Best of all Worlds - Customkit Buildings | ArchiPro

The Best of all Worlds

FOR COST AND SPACE SAVINGS; for a rustic rural look; and for 24/7 accessibility to everyone, and everything you hold dear, nothing quite compares with a barn and accommodation ‘combo’. 

There are several styles of barns with accommodation. One style is a building where the barn portion shares a wall with the house portion. Sometimes the house portion will extend into part of the loft on the second storey of the barn portion. 

Another style features the barn as the lower portion of the building and the house as the second floor. 

Barn-style homes have become a lifestyle favourite but the actual creation of a barn and a home under one roof is finding favour with a growing number of New Zealanders, primarily because it allows one’s ‘world’ to be in just one place. It also means that the building budget can be stretched further without having to consider separate structures. The solution also provides a place to live while the main house, or dwelling, takes shape. 

Man cave heaven 

All of these were criteria for Robin Tennent when deciding on how to approach the creation of his lifestyle property in the West Auckland suburb of Riverhead. 

He always had plans to build a garage/barn that would be the 

 initial ‘base camp’ as the main house was being built, with the prospect that it would evolve into the ultimate ‘man cave’ when the more formal dwelling was finished. 

Initially it had to be a civilised place to live for his wife and one son who was still living at home. It also had to have enough room for storing two house lots of furniture, plus enough space to allow for ‘toys’ to be housed. 

“We clearly didn’t want to be paying rent for the duration of the main house build which was going to be a substantial period of time. It made great sense to put money into an asset that would be useable from the outset.” 

Robin had trawled the Internet looking at particular solutions and kept coming back to Customkit as a company offering a stylish and well-built solution. 

“There were a variety of design options that allowed us to work out what layout we wanted. First and foremost we needed an excellent garage and storage option. There also had to be sufficient room for my hoist that I use in my hobby of ‘mechanical tinkering’.” 

“We also wanted an accommodation solution that could be kept clean, tidy and toasty warm during the winter months.” 

American style 

The structure is a variation on an American barn-style building. It is two storeys, custom-designed with a 25-degree roof pitch with the future ‘man cave’ on the ground and the living areas upstairs. There is a commercial standard 4.2m roller door into the workshop. The vertical corrugated cladding is done in Colorsteel Ironsand. 

Robin says there is a real advantage to living on the land as the main house is being built particularly in terms of the ‘flow’ of the property and taking time to make decisions without being rushed. 

“The building is also able to be future-proofed and can be changed depending on plans. We may rent it out at a later stage or even have as accommodation for family. There are no plans to have farm animals inside other than another area on the land for family dogs and cats to relax and enjoy.” 

He says dealing with Customkit from the get-go has been splendid. 

“They’re professional, able to resolve any matters quickly and overall quality, an excellent organisation to work with in every regard. They really understand barns and have a history of creating some marvellous structures.” 

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