An apartment with a balcony is definitely better than an apartment without it. Extra 2-4 m2 can be equipped so that you have one more room at your disposal. Or, at least, a separate area for a useful or pleasant pastime.
What to consider before transforming a balcony?
The first advantage of a balcony in any Cypriot apartment is warm weather almost all year round. That is, the balcony does not need to be insulated, as is done in Northern countries.
The second plus is the local mentality. Cypriots usually don't use their balconies to stock old stuff.
A balcony in Cyprus is an area for rest or work.
In addition to advantages, you also need to take into account some of the nuances that you will meet on the Mediterranean island. For example, the most important thing is that the balcony has to be glazed in 95% of cases. This will protect you from scorching sun rays, dust storms, which are not uncommon in Cyprus, and winter rains.
What else is worth evaluating before planning a "balcony revolution":
- The side on which the balcony is located. South or west are the "hottest" sides, which turns into a problem in summer. It is necessary to include additional costs for the installation of an air conditioner, tinted windows, and so on.
- Balconies nearby. If the balconies of your neighbors are too close to you, then it makes sense to think about sound insulation.
- The possibility of redevelopment. Partial demolition or erection of a wall, changing the shape of window and door openings - all this requires not only different costs, but also permits.
- Floor. The first two floors always want to be made more closed from prying eyes. The upper floors, on the other hand, open up as much as possible in order to have beautiful views.
- View from the balcony. Similar to the previous point. In Cyprus, not only the view of the sea is appreciated, but also of the mountains and green areas. You will definitely spend a lot of time on such balconies!
- The shape and area of the balcony. A square balcony gives more room to maneuver - this is like a loggia. But the elongated and narrow balconies are limited for some changes. Although thousands of life hacks and designs have been invented specifically for the long balconies.
Most likely, some of the balcony furniture will have to be ordered as they must fit in size. But it's worth it!
And now let's see what can be done from a typical balcony!
Idea #1: ChillZone, or a place to relax
It's the easiest option, since it does not require special investments and does not cause difficulties. Somebody does not even glaze such a balcony: outside furniture that does not deteriorate from the rain, pots of flowers and a cute, cozy corner for relaxation is ready!
Redevelopment and supernatural repairs for your ChillZone are also unnecessary. Usually, the owners of the apartment can deal with the arrangement. But at the same time, there is a risk of making your paradise corner untidy.
So it is better to adhere to certain rules:
- Choose a single color scheme. The balcony is a small space, so there is no need for variegation. It is better to use natural colors with small bright elements. If the balcony is very small, then it is recommended to finish it in light colors, as dark colors "eat up" the space.
- Choose a uniform and simple style. Minimalism, hi-tech, Scandinavian - all this is perfect for any small room, including balconies.
- A minimum of furniture, a maximum of constructivism. A folding table, a pull-out bench, narrow shelves or a built-in wardrobe are what you need to save space and convenience.
- Caution with textiles. Yes, textiles add coziness, but on a balcony, even on a glazed one, there is a risk of staining or quickly wearing out any fabric item. Therefore, think over the design in advance and try to give up curtains, an abundance of pillows and blankets. It is better to give preference to wicker, leather or plastic furniture, as well as blinds.
These are just general tips that you can transform to suit your needs. It is possible that you want to create a real work of art and invite a designer. In any case, the chill area on the balcony is a great option for everyone, without exception.
Idea #2: office or library
Typically, a Cypriot apartment is a living room, often combined with a kitchen, and a separate bedroom for each family member. But the bedroom is not an office!
For example, if one of the spouses works at home in a bedroom, this is at least inconvenient. Or if the two kids have one room. And one of them needs to do homework in silence.
In any case, an office is a necessary thing. Not every apartment can have a whole room for it. Therefore, it seems that the working area is the prerogative of the owners of individual houses. But no! For these needs, you can equip a balcony.
Of course, you will need to glaze your balcony, make good repairs and keep it dry at any time of the year. It is also very important for the office to create protection from direct rays of the sun as it is simply impossible to work if it is too sunny!
The set of furniture for the office is minimal. Sometimes furniture has to be ordered to fit in size. The minimum set for an office: a writing/computer desk (preferably with drawers or shelves), a comfortable chair, a shelf or a filing cabinet.
Lighting is recommended to be installed in the ceiling or walls in order to save space. White daylight is suitable for work.
Another option for your balcony is a home library. Then the furniture set will be as follows: a bookcase, a comfortable chair or a small sofa, a good lighting device.
Idea #3: guest bedroom
Or even a bedroom for you? In a small apartment, for example, in a studio, the bedroom can be moved onto the balcony.
In a bigger apartment, you can convert your balcony to a bedroom, where you can sleep at any time of the year. Guests will also enjoy staying in a separate room rather than a shared living room on the couch.
When converting your balcony to a bedroom, you should definitely take care of the following points:
- dryness and sufficient temperature, it's so important in winter
- noise insulation - especially if your balcony is near a busy street
- enough space to move
- good door between the balcony and the apartment (it must be lockable).
Of course, you can turn your balcony into a ChillZone with a sofa, and guests will stay here. But it may not always be convenient. For example, it can be cold there in winter, or there is no door at all, as an arch is made instead. But if you wish, you can combine the functionality and combine the recreation area with the guest room.
Idea #4: bar
Cool idea even for those who are not particularly addicted to alcohol. In this case, the name "bar" can be understood as a meeting place with friends. Bar counter, high chairs, and lots of drinks. Well, for example:
- candy and pastry bar
- smoothie bar
- ice cream bar
- tea bar
- coffee bar.
The balcony can be equipped however you want. Not only bar furniture is appreciated, but also interesting lighting: garlands, diode strips. Or maybe a good old disco ball under the ceiling?
Sounds great. But here it is important to think through a few points. The most important of these is soundproofing so as not to disturb neighbors. Fun is fun, and you need to respect the other tenants too. And if the party in the apartment does not disturb your neighbors, then the sounds from the balcony are usually louder.
It is also important to understand that the bar is a kitchen area. This means that it should always be clean, dry, comfortable washable coverings and other delights of the catering unit. If opportunities permit, you can even put a sink, but sometimes this is an extra headache.
Idea #5: greenhouse
To turn a balcony into a greenhouse is a luxury… on the one hand. On the other hand, this is the best place to arrange a small garden in your apartment!
There will be enough light for the plants, but there will be no scorching sun. You can regulate humidity and even temperature by installing a mini air conditioner. Well, the greenhouse is a place where you can relax, sit with a cup of cold drink and let your eyes enjoy the greenery and flowers.
By the way, if flowers are not your option, you can equip the balcony as a place for pets! Put a cage with a parrot or put a dog mattress. The main thing is to make sure that the sun's rays do not bother the pets in summer.
Idea #6: Connecting your balcony to a room / kitchen
Expanding the living space by completely or partially demolishing the walls is a great idea for those who are not afraid of big changes. Even a load-bearing wall is not a barrier for you as it can be partially removed. For example, by cutting out a large "window" in it. And there are plenty of other ideas. Often the balcony becomes an 'extension' of the living room.
The kitchen can also be “extended”. For example, arrange the aforementioned bar or highlight the dining area.
In addition to demolishing the walls, the second difficulty in implementing this idea is that repairs need to be done not only on the balcony, but also in the room, of which it will become a part. To make everything look organic, with a single space and a common design.
Idea #7: utility room
It can look strange to convert a balcony into a utility room. But some people really want to get rid of things that spoil the interior style or occupy too much space.
In addition, not every balcony can be equipped with great comfort. For example, on the ground floor in Cyprus, few people want to have a room from a balcony. Or the balcony is too small. Or… there may be many other reasons.
But it is unambiguous that the utility room will save a lot of space in the apartment and keep its neat appearance. However, it is also necessary to equip the utility room wisely so that it does not become overgrown with rubbish.
What can be taken to the balcony:
- large and spacious wardrobe for things that are not used every day
- washing machine and dryer
- kitchen shelves with supplies (dried mushrooms, vegetables, cereals, etc.)
- shoe shelf
- shelves with books - you get a library.
It is possible that in this situation the balcony will not be the most beautiful place in the house. The main thing is to work hard on its functionality. And you should always remember that the balcony is not a place for trash! If you do, your balcony will remain a cozy and useful pantry.
Have you decided to buy an apartment or a house in Cyprus? Or maybe you are just looking for good options? Contact the DOM Real Estate! The website contains a large selection of real estate objects, both residential and commercial. Experienced agency specialists will be happy to help you make the right choice.