Do You Need an Architect For a Loft Conversion?

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Hiring an architect to design your loft conversion is a good idea if you want your loft conversion to have bespoke specifications. Of course, your design fees will probably be a significant part of the overall cost of the project, so it's essential to find the right professional. Ideally, you'll choose someone with experience in similar schemes, who can provide you with Building Regulations drawings and structural engineer drawings.

Planning permission

Before you start planning a loft conversion, you should first obtain planning permission. This is a legal requirement for any conversion to a habitable room. This is required in order to ensure the safety of the building. In many cases, a loft conversion is not permitted in certain areas. In such cases, you may be required to apply for a Lawful Development Certificate (LDC).

The total area of the additional space cannot be greater than 40 square metres for terraced properties, and 50 square metres for detached or semi-detached properties. You also cannot build the extension higher than the highest part of the roof. Furthermore, the materials used to build the extension must be compatible with the rest of the property. Any side elevation windows should be obscure-glazed.

Designing a loft conversion

There are a number of considerations to be made when designing a loft conversion. In addition to the layout and features of the new room, the design must also meet local planning and building regulations. For example, some councils prefer a Mansard-style conversion, and others have specific requirements for windows and cladding. Having a professional architect  from loftconversionlondon draw up the design is an important step to ensure that it meets building regulations.

For instance, the staircase in a loft conversion may need to be elevated to ensure safety. Alternatively, the home owner may want to include a room section to create a bed. This space can then be visually separated from the landing, or an en-suite bathroom, if desired. In order to do this, home owners should use darker paint to define each area.

Finding a builder

If you are planning a loft conversion, there are a number of factors to consider. The first step is establishing whether you are eligible for planning permission or not. If you are, you will need to apply for Planning Permission. This is necessary if you intend to use the loft for residential purposes. It can be complicated to obtain planning permission, especially if you live in a conservation area. Another issue is whether your roof space is tall enough. If you are in doubt, consult our architect.

It is always a good idea to ask for references and see examples of their previous work before selecting a builder. You can look at the finished projects to get an idea of the level of quality and craftsmanship. 


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