Loft conversions are a terrific way to add space and value to your home. They can be costly and complicated, but thorough planning and design will make the procedure of your loft conversion as smooth as is possible. There are various different factors that can vary among loft conversions, therefore it is essential to have a structural survey carried out on your existing loft to know what kind of conversion will be suitable. If other conversions have been done on similar properties in your road, check and see what type of conversions have been done.
Loft conversions are appropriate for many homes, but your pre-existing loft will need to have at least 2.2-2.4m of ceiling height to be able to undertake a conversion as some of this space will be lost to additional insulation or modifications to the roof height. If you do not have the mandatory ceiling height, alterations can be made to the existing roof or floor of the loft, but this will be costly. Also take into account the placement of the staircase, as you will need a suitable location for a permanent staircase on the floor below the loft.
There are lots of varieties of loft conversion. Rooflight and dormer window loft conversions are the most simple. Rooflight conversions will simply require setting up rooflights into the existing roof profile, while dormer windows are vertical windows with their own small roofs that are positioned in the pre-existing roof. Dormer windows add headroom in situations where it may be limited. There are also the higher priced hip to gable and mansard style loft conversions, but these will substantially expand the size of the space.
Some loft conversions, particularly less complicated styles like rooflight or dormer conversions, will be covered by permitted development rights and consequently not need planning permission, providing you do not intend on altering the size of the structure of your pre-existing roof. Hip to gable and mansard conversions are more likely to require planning permission. If you’re in a conservation area you will need planning permission, and this will generally specify the kind of conversion that can be used, as it’ll need to be a design that suits the area. If any of the walls of the loft are terraced, you will need a Party Wall Agreement. Building regulations will apply to all elements of loft conversions.
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