A couple have been left fuming after spending £209,950 on a brand new Persimmon detached three-bedroom home in Huddersfield, West Yorkshire - only to find that neither of their cars will fit into the garage. Claire Walker, 37, was stunned to discover the garage was too narrow to accommodate her Volvo S40. Her partner Andy Birkhead, 33, managed to squeeze his Fiesta ST in, but found he could not open his door wide enough to get out!
The couple only discovered the problem when they cleared out belongings they had been storing in the integral garage since moving into their new home in March. When they complained to the builder Persimmon Homes, the CEO just referred the matter to the technical director at the regional office who said they should have measured the garage before buying their new house, according to Ms Walker.
Apart from the narrow wall to wall width of 2440mm, it also appears that the garage door width of just 2030mm is too small for around 45% of the cars listed in the Which Special Car Survey 2009.
As the garage is integral part of the house it cannot be easily made larger. The buyers have asked Persimmon if they would plaster the third wall (two are already done) add some more insulation to keep out the damp and put some vinyl on the floor so they could use it as a storage room, but they refused. The couple's drive only has room for one car and they have also asked for it to be widened to fit two cars, but they have heard nothing back from Persimmon since. As Ms Walker says, "it's not like we're asking them to knock down the house and start again,"
Wayne Gradwell, managing director at Persimmon Homes' Yorkshire region said:
"As one of the UK's leading housebuilders it can only be a matter of deep regret to us if any customer is dissatisfied with their new home. The garage in question is comparable with new build properties across the UK. We continue to work with Miss Walker and Mr Birkhead to try and resolve the situation."
A spokesperson for Persimmon added:
"The dimensions of each garage are governed by both the size of the house and the relevant planning regulations and are clearly laid out in the marketing brochure. We deeply regret that Miss Walker and Mr Birkhead are unhappy with the size of their garage."
"Deeply regret"? Persimmon should be doing more!
If the garage size is determined by the size of the house then the house should be made larger!
Planning requirements for council adopted single garages in Devon for example, state a minimum width of 3m and depth of 6m.
The Monmouthshire Supplementary Planning Guidance Domestic Garages 2013 also give 3m x 6m with a minimum door clear opening of 2.35m.
The RIBA design standards state a minimum size for a single garage of 2.5m width x 5m deep.