Everyone wants a beautiful fireplace to come home to in the autumn and winter. There are all kinds of fireplace available, but in our opinion, there’s little to beat the combined convenience, efficiency and look of gas fires. But how do you pick the right one for your room? Let’s look at some of the main things to consider.

First of all, how about the size of your house. You'll need to determine what’s likely to be the most suitable scale of the fireplace for your space. How wide is the wall where you’re fitting the fire? You don’t want to use up all the visual space, so as a rule of thumb, this professional ratio usually works - one part fireplace to two parts blank wall. In other words, have a fireplace that takes up one-third of the wall space. Of course, a fire surround and hearth can help fill that extra space in a bigger room.

Think about the feel of your interior design. If your home is traditional, perhaps a stone cottage with beams and a low roof, you’ll want to have a fireplace that’s in keeping with that, rather than something upmarket and modern. Gas fires that fit a traditional surrounding, with flames that flicker like the real-life version, are going to fit the bill. Or what about a log burner? You could obviously opt for an open fire, but it’ll take more looking after than a gas equivalent, with solid fuel to stack, and ashes to clear away in between. If your home is more cutting-edge, minimalist, then consider polished metal finishes and designs with strong lines and no fuss. If you go for something quirky and unusual, make sure it’ll pass the test of time.

Consider how much of the house you want this appliance to heat. If you’re just looking for a gas fireplace to warm one small room, you’ll obviously want less power output than if you need the entire house heated. For reasons of fuel efficiency and money saving, don’t get a huge fireplace if a smaller one will do. Gas fires come in all shapes and sizes.

Do you have pets or small children in the house? Consider the safety of fires that don’t have a glass panel that gets super-hot, and if necessary add a safety screen to keep paws and little fingers at a safe distance. Don’t take chances where fire and hot surfaces are concerned.

If you need a fireplace that can be transported to other areas of the house or that you can take with you when you move, then an electric fire is likely to be the most convenient. Contemporary electric fires are a far cry from the ones that were popular decades ago. Nowadays they can come with high definition screens that sit into the wall and are powered by a discrete electric socket.

Shop around and choose the right fuel, design and size to fit your home and budget. These days the choice is vast and we’re certain you can find one that enhances your living space.