A loft conversion could be the answer you are looking for if you are looking to add a bedroom or an office to your property, without having to build an extension to your property.
The main thing to consider is your actual lost space. If you have a house that was built before 1965, it is likely that your roof is a rafter and purlin construction. These roofs tend to be ideal for loft conversions as they have steep pitch and tend to have clear spaces between the supporting rafters.
If your house was built after 1965, things might e a bit trickier. Trussed roofs tend to be a lot lower than roofs on buildings built before this date. You may need to consider raising the roof for your loft conversion to be viable to attain the height required for a good, usable space. We recommend going no lower than 7 feet at the tallest point of your room.
You will need to seek planning permission if you intend to raise your roof. Planning permission in some cases is not required if you property falls within Permitted Development Rights. If you live in a national park, an area of outstanding natural beauty, or a conservation area, planning permission should be sought. If you are in any doubt as to what authorisation you need, check with your local planning department. All loft conversions need to conform to building regulations and fire safety regulations.
Yes, it might seem expensive to splash out about £20,000 to £40,000 on a loft conversion, but moving home to gain the same extra space could cost you £80,000. You also have the added benefit of not leaving your current home and neighbourhood. Your children also do not have to move schools. In the long term, a conversion could also add value to your home.
A loft conversion gives any home owner a change to have a think about how to use your home in conjunction with your new space. You might want to build yourself and office, or a luxury bedroom. Maybe, you want to build a self-contained space for your kids. Whatever it is you decide to do with your new space, consider your options carefully. You do not want your property to be priced off the street, or your living space to feel unbalanced.
Types of loft conversions
1. The Dormer
This is an extension of the actual roof. A section of your roof is removed, walls are built and then a flat or pitched roof is added to this extension. This type of extension is ideal id you have floor space, but not enough head height! You will probably require planning permission for this type of conversion, and it will tend to be a more expensive option, but it will help create more usable space and a more conventionally shaped room.
2. The Mansard
This option in effect gives your home a whole new storey and is proving a popular option in cities. The brickwork dividing your home from your neighbours is extended above the roof line.
3. Roof lights
These are easy to install, and do not alter the shape of your loft space. They can be easily installed, causing the home owner minimal disruption. Roof windows tend to be popular with those opting for smaller loft conversions.