Loft conversions are a terrific way to add space and value to your property. They can be expensive and complicated, but careful planning and design will make the procedure of your loft conversion as smooth as it can be. There are lots of different aspects that may differ between loft conversions, so it is necessary to have a architectural survey done on your existing loft space to determine what kind of conversion will be suitable. If other conversions have been done on similar properties in your road, check and see which kind of conversions have been done.
Loft conversions can be done in many homes, but your current loft should have at least 2.2-2.4m of ceiling height in order to carry out a conversion as some of this space will be lost to additional insulation or changes to the roof height. If you don’t have the mandatory ceiling height, alterations can be made to the pre-existing roof or floor of the loft, but this will be costly. Also consider the location of the staircase, as you will need a suitable location for a permanent staircase on the floor below the loft.
There are lots of types of loft conversion. Rooflight and dormer window loft conversions are the most straightforward. Rooflight conversions will simply require fitting rooflights into the existing roof profile, while dormer windows are vertical windows with their own small roofs that are positioned in the current roof. Dormer windows add headroom in situations where it may be restricted. In addition, there are the higher priced hip to gable and mansard style loft conversions, but these will greatly increase the size of the space.
Some loft conversions, especially simpler types like rooflight or dormer conversions, will be covered by permitted development rights and accordingly not need planning permission, so long as you do not intend on adjusting the size of the structure of your existing roof. Hip to gable and mansard conversions are more likely to require planning permission. If you’re in a conservation area you will require planning permission, which will generally specify the kind of conversion that you can use, as it’ll need to be a style that matches 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 aspects of loft conversions.
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