Do You Need Planning Permission for Your Loft Conversion?
Loft conversions are an easy and convenient way to increase your home’s plinth area without putting up a new structure. While this option is quite economical, many people are reluctant to undertake loft conversion projects for fear of being denied planning permission. Contrary to popular belief, it is indeed possible to convert your loft without permission. All you have to do follow a few easy steps.
In order for you to determine whether you need to apply for planning permission, you will need to procure the services of an architect, builder or civil engineer. Once you tell them what you intend to do with your attic space, they will be able to advice you on whether you need to apply for planning permission or not.
Make sure that their advice is based on your final design as changes to your design may warrant application for planning permission. Alternatively, you can enlist the services of your local building control such as city council to guide you on which conversions are allowable without planning authorization.
Whether you need planning permission or not you will still have to ensure that you get building regulations approval. These regulations are in place to certify that any conversion jobs completed are structurally sound. They also vary from project to project depending on the features covered by each regulation.
The key elements include but is not limited to fire safety with regards to materials used, insulation and alarm systems, sound insulation, walls, joists and floors, staircase accessibility in case of a fire and load bearing support.
Apart from the requirements above, you may also be faced with additional authorization requirements depending on the following factors.
If you live in a protected historic building, you may face some roadblocks depending on the historic classification grade. Some historic buildings are not eligible for conversions that are bound to alter their original design significantly. So if you live in a historic building, ensure that the changes you wish to make are acceptable by the Heritage Protection Guide. You can find the guidelines on The Society for the Protection of Ancient Buildings or the Historic England website.
Endangered species habitat
If for some reason, your attic has been inhabited by any protected species such as bats, various bird species, dormice, wart-biter crickets and V-moths, then you will have to shelf your loft conversion plans. You can get the entire list of protected species on www.phlorum.com.
While there are ways to work around it, you will need to hire an ecologist to survey the site and advice on whether you can still convert the loft or not. Even so, your planning permission might still get rejected should they decide to carry out a survey of their own and come to a different conclusion. On the positive side you may still be able to carry on with your conversion if you are successful in getting a mitigation license stating that your project will not endanger the protected species residing in your loft.
Party Wall Agreement
If you live in a detached or semidetached house, you will need to inform you neighbour of your proposed loft conversion especially if the job will affect the shared wall. In this case you will need a Party wall agreement between you and your neighbour stating that the conversion will not affect their property.
You can find templates online that you can then customize to your specifications with regards to you and your neighbours’ situation. If they are reluctant to sign off, you can have an independent surveyor come in and approve your conversion.
In conclusion, you will not need planning permission for your proposed loft conversion if your project stays within the guidelines stated below.
Also do not forget to reinforce the floor below as your current existing floor may not have been built for heavy usage. Ensure you discuss this with your architect, builder or civil engineer.
9 Important Questions That You Need to Ask Before You Consider a Loft Conversion
A loft conversion can be quite an exciting project. It gives homeowners an opportunity to be creative and increase the living space in your house. However, before you rush to start this task, there are several things that you must consider. The planning process can be quite hectic, but it will surely save you time and money over time. To help you get organized and ensure that you have a project that you will be proud of, there are questions that you should ask yourself. Here are the loft conversion questions that you should ask before starting your project.
Why do you want a loft conversion?
There are several reasons why homeowners choose to extend their living space. One reason is to make improvements in the property that they have invested in for many years. If you are planning to stay in the home permanently, then you need to invest in a quality loft conversion project. In addition, other people opt to convert their loft to add value to their homes and make more profit when they sell the property. You can always speak to a real estate agent to determine how much value the conversion will add to your home.
Some people can also convert their loft to create short-term space. This is usually done when a homeowner needs extra space but does not have the financial ability to move to a bigger home. Knowing why you want a conversion will help you to set up your budget accordingly and avoid overspending in the process. If a conversion is a short-term solution, then it may make sense to save the cash and move instead of spending it in a home that you will leave after a few years.
How much money do you want to spend in the loft conversion?
Even though this may sound obvious, many people consider a loft conversion before deciding on their budget. This usually results in a project that looks ideal but is way out of the stipulated budget. If you are planning on a loft conversion, then you should think critically and come up with a realistic figure that you wish to spend. Make sure that you communicate this to your building contractor before you get started with your design as you may get recommendations to save money on your loft conversion. This will help you to save lots of time and will ensure that you do not spend more money than you have planned to.
What design styles do you like?
After ascertaining your set budget, you need to think about the style that you want for your loft conversion. You should never assume that your architect and loft conversion building contractors know what you want. There are many loft conversion styles and designs out there and you need to research extensively to come up with the exact design that you want. Ensure that you discuss every detail that you want with the contractors. You can check out our loft conversion ideas to help you make a decision.
Is it necessary to consider building regulations when converting my loft?
When converting your loft, you must consider the local building regulations. You can get a building completion certificate from your local authority or a nationally approved building inspection company. This will ensure that your loft conversion project is built according to the set building regulation standards. Your property may be devalued if you do not have this certificate and you may have problems selling your house in the future since a building completion certificate is necessary during the selling process.
When do you want the project to be done?
Many people prefer building work to be done during the spring or summer months. These seasons have good weather and they ensure that construction work takes less time to complete. Irrespective of when you want the building work to start, you must ensure that you start planning for the loft conversion process early. Surveys, designs, applying for planning permissions,, getting building regulations approvals and hiring building contractors take lots of time. It may take several months for your conversion project to get started. This is why you need to be realistic and start the process early enough.
How long will the loft conversion project take?
On average, it will take about eight weeks for a loft conversion to be completed. However, the time will vary from one loft to another and depending the building work that is needed. You should also take into consideration the time taken to have the loft conversion plans drawn up and getting planning permission.
Will the loft conversion affect my neighbors?
Before you start your loft conversion planning process, it is important that you consider your neighbors. You will need their cooperation, especially if the construction work will affect a wall that you share. Furthermore, you may need to access their land during the building process. Ensure that you talk to your neighbors to let them know about your project in advance. You need to know whether they have any objections or problems with your upcoming project. This way, you can make minor alterations to your loft conversion plans to prevent your neighbors from raising any material planning objections that will delay your project. Furthermore, you will be able to be on good terms with all your neighbors.
Will my utilities be strained?
When you add extra living space to your home, you can be sure that your heating requirements, water, and electricity needs will also increase. Your builder should advise you whether a new fuse board is necessary to handle the additional circuits and breakers or whether the shower or bathroom in your loft will affect the water pressure in the rest of the house, necessitating installation of an unvented cylinder or pump.
Do you need work done anywhere else in your home?
Before you start your loft conversion project, you should check around your home to determine whether you need work done anywhere else in your home. By getting all the work done at the same time, you will save money and time. Furthermore, you will reduce the amount of disruption and time you have contractors in your house.
A loft conversion is a perfect way of adding space to your home. It can come in handy if you have a baby on the way, need a home office, or you have visitors coming to stay. A loft conversion project will add an extra shower room or bedroom upstairs and it will be a less costly project than moving to a bigger property. By asking these loft conversion questions, you will be able to come up with the best plans that will guarantee a successful project.
You have a beautiful house but there is always a need for more space. It is very common to see lofted houses in London and getting a loft conversion is the best option when converting to two stories doesn't make any sense. There are a lot of things to consider before opting for a loft conversion. There is also a lot of money involved in getting this conversation started. It costs almost £15,000 for a single room in the roof with a bed and a bath and the price goes up to almost £55,000 if you want a room that is manufactured off-site and then canned into position.
there are certain things that you should know about before you go for a loft conversion. Some of them are mentioned below.
Lofting is not possible if your house is completely packed, you will need a specified amount of free space for lofting. You should consider making a pathway to reach a room and there should be enough sunlight and heating in the room. The roof should be in a comfortable position and the room should measure at least 5,500mm side to side, inclusive of a chimney, and 7,500mm front to back. With enough space, you can use the room however you like, you can make it a kids play area, a mini-movie space, or a calm place where you get some alone time.
Loft conversations do not require any specific permissions but if you are planning to make structural changes then taking permission from local authorities is mandatory. Permission is also required if you want to extend the height of the roof or the dome to create extra space. There are also specific regulations that you have to follow. The loft should be safe and there should be risks or structural damage. There should be proper stairs and ventilation too. If you wish to have a party wall you should inform your neighbors and give adjoining notice according to the Party wall agreement 1996.
The lofted room should have proper insulation and plumbing. There are various other factors that have to be considered but these two make a room resizable. It is impossible to provide insulation to a room if the walls are too thin and add insulation padding and might suck the space of the room and make it too tiny. There should be water and plumbing facilities in the room and most rooms have a washroom so it is necessary to have an efficient drainage system connected to the room.
There are different styles and models of lofts available like Rooftop conversion, Dormer conversion, Hip-to-Gable conversions, etc but not all of them are suitable for a single home. You have to look at the floor, the roof, the structure, and select a type of loft. The cost of following upon different lofts also varies so you have to make a decision wisely.
Loft conversions are common everywhere so you can go around the neighborhood and look out for similar lofted houses and consider the same time of loft conversions they have.
Your financial expenses will not remain the same after you get a lofting conversion. There will be additional expenses to fill up the interior and to equip the room with necessary gadgets. You will have to clean the room regularly and make sure the room is safe from pests and other rodents. All of this increases the expenses and a loft conversion is not cheap. Normal loft conversion costs £15,000 for a single room in the roof with a bed and a bath and the price goes up to almost £55,000 if you want a room that is manufactured off-site and then canned into position. The lofted room which had a bed and a bath could add up to an additional 20% value to the house.
It is necessary for you to tell your insurance company about the loft conversion. You should show them all the documents and make a change to your insurance policy. The loft conversion can increase your insurance premium. You should also notify them about moving to a different place when the construction work is going on. You can also get renovations insurance and this will help you from any loss of raw material, accidents while renovation, and property owners' liability.
A loft conversion is a huge expense and you should be 100% sure if you want to get a loft conversion. It costs a lot and increases your expenses but it also adds value to your house. You have to take care of so many things like electricity, waterproofing, soundproofing, etc but in the end, it will be worth it. The new room will be the perfect place to enjoy your alone time or spend time with friends and family.
We all love some extra space, and practically every household struggles to find that and balance with perfection. 'Lofft Conversion London' can help you to implement incredible solutions according to your needs by adding some benefit to this. You can revamp your home, but the loft conversion is one of the best ways to take it all to the new level of extra space.
Below we are highlighting the main benefits of loft conversion -
Dormer and l-shaped dormer loft conversion - A simple flat roof dormer conversion, is the most popular one. It is an extension to the existing roof and projects vertically from a slanted roof, which creates additional floor space and headroom within the property.
Mansard and l-shaped mansard loft conversion - The best-suited conversion for the rear of the property. It has a back wall sloping flat roof, that significantly changes to the roof shape and structure at an angle of 72 degrees. Mansard and l-shaped mansard loft conversion open up space and add more value to your property.
Hip to gable loft conversion - Suitable for the end of terrace and detached homes, a hip to gable loft conversion levels a naturally slanted end roof to create a vertical wall. It's becoming an increasingly popular option for homeowners.
Roof light or Velux Loft Conversion - In a roof light conversion you can add windows and reinforce the floor to convert an attic into a comfortable living space, without altering or expanding the existing space.
Many loft conversions can be done as approved construction, but are subject to a number of restrictions. It also depends on the type of property you own, and whether any authorized improvements in the house have already been completed.
Have a maximum volume of 50 cubic meters (40 for terraced houses)
Not to extend beyond the existing roof space plane
Not to be higher than the highest part of the existing roof
Be built with materials that blend into the existing house.
Not have any verandas, balconies or elevated platforms.
Switch to the original eaves as far as possible (at least 20 cm)
Using dark glazing for any side-facing window or for any opening 1.7 m above the floor.
House extension London is a certified designing company comprising a full-fledged service and creating inspiring spaces and safe environments to live, for clients. Contact us to enhance your enjoyment of your home and its value. A million of homeowners have utilized their loft space to get more area out of their property.
Cost of a Loft Conversion in 2021
Keeping your possessions and aged, discarded items in storage is not the easiest way to make use of unused space in your house. Why not turn the lofts into bedrooms or dining areas for homeowners who are still undecided on what to do about them? Yes, loft conversions are costly, but they can be a cheaper option than buying a new home.
Loft Conversion London is a fantastic place to start. We provide you with up-to-date and comprehensive updates about everything you need to know about converting your loft, from loft conversion stairs to loft conversion preparation approval. We'll come up with a design for the most stunning loft conversion based on what you tell us about your home and your needs. We are one of the best loft conversion companies in the region and ensure to be affordable.
What is a loft conversion?
A loft conversion is a method of converting a loft (or attic space) into additional living space, thus increasing the value and usefulness of your home. Your builder can either repair your roof to make more room or simply install a frame on top of your current roof, depending on the style of loft conversion you choose. This loft conversion is a cost-effective way to add space to your home, and you can do anything you want with it. It can be used as an extra space, a children's playroom, a gaming room, or an indoor theatre, among other things.
The time it takes to complete a loft conversion is about 5-6 weeks, depending on the style and configuration of the loft conversion. A loft conversion is more of an investment than a cost since the property value rises by an average of 20% as a result of the lofted space, and when you sell the building, you get all of your money back plus 20% more.
Loft conversion possibilities:
Pre-assemble loft conversions and built loft conversions are the two most common styles of loft conversions. These factory-built loft conversions are disassembled. These ready-to-assemble lofts are available for purchase and assembly at your place. The time it takes to put these lofts together is almost half that of building a room. Construction is the most popular form of loft conversion, and you'll need to employ a contractor and an architect to draw up plans and get started. The builders erect dorms, extend walls, and make plans for making the roof habitable.
Is a Loft Conversion Need Planning Permission?
One of the most commonly asked questions is whether or not we need permission when it comes to loft conversions. Yeah, you must stick to particular parameters in certain situations, but not always. If you want to expand the area above what the PD (Permitted Development) allows, you'll need to apply for planning permission. The same is true if your house is in a contentious neighborhood. Another factor to bear in mind is that while PD permits dormers and roof lighting, they must not be placed ahead of the main elevation or roof plane. They're even not expected to stand higher than the house's tallest roof. Aside from that, you are free to continue with your loft conversion project as you wish.
What are the advantages of converting your loft?
Living in the same house can feel monotonous, and you will choose to move to a new place and do new stuff as time passes. If you're expecting a change and the first thought that springs to mind is that you should move. Moving to a new venue, on the other hand, could be expensive.
When relocating to a new place, you must take into account several considerations in addition to the living conditions. You'll need to find colleges, clinics, food stores, emergency care, and other necessities. Rather than going through all of this hassle, it is preferable to have a room lofted.
How Much Does It Cost to Convert a Loft?
The second most common query we get from our customers, after determining which rules and regulations to be enforced, is how much will a loft conversion cost? So, there you have it. This depends on several variables. First and foremost, we must assess the current roof configuration. Apart from that, we'll need to look at your venue and any coworking ideas you have. The expense would primarily be determined by the home designs you choose. There would be a fair understanding of cost until a schematic of designs has been developed. We provide a free site survey and estimate to provide you with more information. If you simply need more rooms, the cost would range between 15000 and 25000 euros. However, if you want a livable room, you'll have to pay a little more.
A loft conversion is a huge investment, so think wisely about the right choice for your property form and budget before you go ahead with it. Here are some important price considerations:
Is it a cost or an investment to convert your loft?
As a result of the loft conversion, your home's value will increase. Your home becomes more unique after you transform it. Almost all lofted homes are appealing and sell quickly. This will help you make money in the long run. As a result, turning a loft into a living room is a financial investment rather than a loss.
Types of loft conversion:
A loft conversion is a trend in which we renovate an extra room in your house and transform it into what you like and use. Loft conversions can be done in a variety of ways.
The positive thing about loft conversions is that they come in a variety of styles to fit any budget. It all depends on what you want to do with your loft conversion and your budget.
Dormer Loft Conversion:
For those with pitched roofs, this method of conversion is suitable. If you go for a dormer loft upgrade, one of your roof's slopes would be converted into a box-shaped frame. Since this structure has a flat roof, homeowners would be able to have tall furniture and large windows. Since this form of conversion necessitates a full overhaul and many internal renovations, a typical conversion will cost anything between £25,000 to £50,000. It will cost between £40,000 and £75,000 to convert an L-shaped dormer.
Loft Conversion with Rooflights:
If you want to let more light into your loft, a roof light loft conversion may be the best choice. Floor reinforcement, plasterboarding, insulation, and floodlight construction are only a few of the many tasks involved. Roof light conversions make it possible to keep changes to the minimum. As a result, you won't have to pay for intensive electrical maintenance, plumbing, and other services. The estimated cost of this conversion in the United Kingdom is between £15,000 and £25,000.
Mansard Loft Conversion :
This style of loft conversion, like a dormer loft conversion, creates a flat-roof space. However, since the exterior walls are slightly slanted, it is slightly noticeable. Mansard loft conversions bring an additional story to homes, allowing them to be extended. This form of conversion is typically large and necessitates planning consent. Furthermore, it is currently the most expensive loft conversion alternative, ranging from £40,000 to £70,000.
Hip to Gable Loft Conversion :
Roof slopes are common in detached homes. A vertical brick wall will replace a roof slope in a hip-to-gable loft conversion. To optimize the room, this conversion style can be combined with a dormer loft conversion. The roof modifications are more substantial than dormer transformations. A hip-to-gable conversion will cost anything from £32,000 to £60,000.
The cost of conversion would be determined by a variety of factors:
Loft conversions require a variety of considerations, each of which contributes to the final cost. Homeowners in more populated and busier regions should face higher prices as well. This will assist you in estimating the cost of a loft conversion. When it comes to ensuring that your extension is worth your money, consulting a reputable local estate agent is your best bet.
Conversions of lofts based on the form of property:
The cost of your loft conversion is also determined by your home. Homes constructed before the 1960s, for instance, have fewer roof trusses, making them easier to convert and potentially saving money. Steel beams are more common in modern houses and are more complex to deal with. However, a professionally completed loft conversion that complies with building codes will bring considerable value to your home, making it well worth the investment.
What are some of the secret costs of loft conversions?
If you're curious why your loft conversion quote is so much higher than you expected, it's most likely because you haven't factored in all the hidden costs. Additional costs for surveying, ventilation, window construction, and interior work add up quickly. It's important to negotiate all future fees with your provider upfront so that you're well aware of the costs.
Is it worthwhile to invest in a loft conversion?
A loft conversion is an excellent way to increase the value and space of your home without needing to relocate. There are several advantages of having a loft renovation, whether your family is expanding or you need a new home office. Make sure you hire a reputable, supervised firm to do the job and they can ensure that it is done to a good standard, increasing the value of your house.
Loft conversions are becoming more common, and you can now find a beautiful lofted space almost anywhere. These loft conversions are affordable and provide many advantages. If you're considering transforming your loft, make sure you employ a reputable firm. You can find reviews and inspiring stories from our customers since Loft Conversion London has some of the best facilities.
We all know that loft conversion is a smart solution to any space concerns in your house. However, there are a lot of regulations and permits that one needs to go through to reach the project’s completion. In these, there also lies fire safety regulations that are extremely important and should be one of your major concerns while getting a loft conversion.
Fire regulations are so significant as they are concerned with the safety of the people. They are not very complicated, and it is essential to ensure your house’s compliance with them.
Before we discuss the fire safety regulations, the Part B of Building Regulations makes it necessary to install certain mechanisms to ensure the safety of people. Some of them are,
Some of the requisite loft conversion fire safety regulations that you should be aware of are -
Transforming all doors into fire doors is an essential process while doing a loft conversion. Building regulations state the necessity of the creation of a safe fire door to the outside of the house. It is suggested to have an accessible fire escape route, other than windows for floors above the first one. Therefore, it is crucial to have fire doors and a planned escape route to the outside of the house.
Building regulations have now allowed people to keep doors without self-closers, as some people don’t like the aesthetics of its look. Though, self-closing doors are recommended for maximum safety. Fire doors typically have thicker construction than standard doors.
Historically, it has been observed that fire doors are not very attractive to look at; however, with time, style and elegance have been a part of the modern-day fire door designs. Fire doors are generally heavy, but when placed correctly they can open and close without much effort.
According to the Building Regulations, smoke alarms are mandatory. Ideally, a smoke alarm should be installed on every floor of the house to ensure the safety of the people in case of any fire. These alarms are supposed to be installed at a distance of approximately 7.5-8 meters from the habitable space.
There are a few points to keep in mind with the smoke alarm system. These are -
It is considered safe to have an escape route through the staircase, as it is unsafe to escape through the window beyond the first floor. Building Regulations state that this route including the staircase, if any, should have a fire-resistance of 30 minutes. The entire escape route might need plaster boarding and plastering below to ensure maximum fire safety.
The protected house escape route for single-storey homes -
The fire regulations are simpler for single-storey houses than double-storey. A mains-powered smoke alarm interlinked at both levels is necessary. Apart from these, you need an escape window in every room of the house on the first floor.
The escape window needs to have the following specifications -
The protected house escape route for double-storey homes -
The escape route from your loft to the outside is mainly through the hallway and staircase, so this area needs to be as protected as it can be from the fire. For a double-storey house, this can be achieved by
Based on the construction of your property, there are some other considerations that one needs to make to contain the fire. Party walls between the neighbor and your house should be made fire-resistant. Fire-resistant curtains are also a measure that you can take.
Apart from these, fire extinguishers can be kept in a visible and accessible place to help diminish small fires.
Sprinkler systems are not mandatory; however, you can install one for additional safety. Before installing one, just make sure to keep these points in mind -
There are a variety of sprinklers available and you can choose the one that suits your budget and the property’s requirements.
You cannot get away without getting proper fire safety regulations in place as the loft will be inspected to ensure that all the measures are followed. Working with a professional expert can help you get hold of the best ideas and measures that will keep you and your property safe.