Loft Conversions Wimbledon

Loft conversion experts in Wimbledon.

Are Your Loft Conversion Plans Feasible?

The attic is a standard feature of many houses. This is the space right beneath the roof and above the top floor’s ceiling, measuring roughly the same size as the house itself. Sadly, the attic often ends up as wasted space as it is ignored, left to dust, and used as a makeshift dump of unwanted possessions. Though it can serve as crude storage, much of the attic room, particularly all that vertical space, remains unoccupied and useless.

Give Life to Your Attic through Loft Conversion

You could, fortunately, give new life to your dark and dusty attic. This is possible through loft conversion, a home extension method wherein the attic’s structure is modified and renovated so as to create a functional loft room. Contrary to other ways to extend a house, loft conversion takes less time and effort due to the fact that no new structures are needed to be built as the roof and ceiling already provides the basic frame. Indeed, this method only requires structural strengthening and an overhaul of the interior.

Factors that Determine Your Loft’s Feasibility

The planning stage of every attic conversion project can be rather tricky however. One first has to assess what and how much materials are needed, how much space can the actual loft legally cover, which part goes to where, and so on and so forth. Most importantly, you should determine if your loft conversion plans are feasible or not before doing everything else.

To do so, here are the things that you should consider:

1. Design
First off, ask yourself if your design fits the size of your loft and is something you can actually implement. If it’s too complex or a tad too dull, consider going back to the drawing board and repeat the design process until you can come up with a satisfactory one.

2. Roof type
The feasibility of your loft conversion plans lie on whether or not your roof allows for attic conversion. A house with a truss-type roof framework in particular nullifies direct conversion, as its integral supports get in the way and will be severely weakened when cut through. In contrast, roofs with rafter support are the most conversion-friendly.

3. Overall loft size
Your loft size is dictates how much you are going to spend. The amount of materials and the structural modifications all depend on the size of your attic. Whether you can convert your loft or not in this case depends on your ability to afford the financial requirements to be incurred by the size of your loft.

4. Budget
Speaking of expenses, you should also see if your plans are in tune with what you are willing to spend for the project. Consider all the relevant factors when making your budget and make sure that you can afford your estimated spendings.

Plans for loft conversion, regardless the nature of the project, should be studied thoroughly before anything else. One should make sure that it can be practically implemented, lest money and effort ends up wasted and the loft unfinished and once again left to dust.

When a Loft Conversion Planning Permission is Needed and When It Is Not

There are so many ways to extend one’s home, but loft conversion is one of the most preferred method by many homeowners and home improvement enthusiasts. This is unlike other home extension methods in a way that it does not require as much time, effort, and lot space. The roof and the ceiling, both forming the basic structural framework of the loft room, make this possible. Indeed, you’ll only need to add in some structural reinforcement and a lot of overhaul to the interior.

A Short Overview of Loft Conversion

With loft conversion, one has to convert the commonly unused and misused attic into a more useful part of the house. This home extension method adds a significant amount of space to the house, and is applicable to any structure with a roof. This also adds approximately 20% to the residence’s real property value as a side benefit. The loft can be just about anything: bedroom, kitchen, storage, recreational area, or even a separate housing unit. There really are a lot of possibilities in a converted loft.

However, there is no real freedom when planning the loft’s design. There are certain regulations that have to be followed such that the loft is practical, stable, and does not intrude nature or the neighbors. This is the reason why every attic conversion project requires a loft conversion planning permission and many other papers back in the day.

Loft Conversion Planning Permits Are No Longer Necessary

If you live in the United Kingdom and are planning to convert your loft, consider yourself lucky. You see, some time during the last quarter of the year 2008, the UK government has relaxed all laws related to loft conversion as part of the effort to help the citizens who cannot afford to move to a new home because of the rising real estate costs. Nonetheless, you can only build your loft right after the design process if you follow certain provisions written in the current building code.

What sort of provisions are there? These rules concern both the design and size delimitations of the loft. The design part prioritizes the aesthetics and the residents’ privacy. For instance, side-facing windows should be obscure glazed, and all openings should be no less than 1.7 meters above the floor. Also, open spaces that stick out like sore thumbs on the roof area are not allowed, and the exterior and materials need to be similar to the original construction.

Of course, the rules concerning the roof size is not as simple. The loft should only be within the dimensions covered by the original roof space, and must have sufficient allowance, headroom, and distance from the eaves. The measurements vary from one area to another so it’s best to consult the local building control officer to know the dimensions allowed in your area.

Now you don’t have to confine yourself to all these rules. You can deviate as long as you are willing to endure the expenses of acquiring a loft conversion planning permission and if you are open to inputs and changes required by the building control officer.

6 Steps to Convert Your Loft: A Loft Conversion Guide

Home extension is one of the many popular ways to improve one’s house. Now don’t let the name worry you. This does not simply mean covering more lot space, a method that can be arduous, expensive and may not be available in certain housing types; you can also expand your house’s floor space by making use of certain idle spaces in your house. One such space is no other than the often neglected attic.

Loft Conversion

A loft conversion gives use to one’s long neglected, dark, and dusty attic. In this method, that space between the roof and the ceiling is transformed into a structurally sound and liveable loft room. It is famous for certain qualities that made it stand out against other home extension methods, namely its flexibility and simplicity.

Converting the Loft: The Basic Steps

If you are wondering how it’s all done, then you’ve come to the right page. Below is a quick loft conversion guide:

1. Plan.
Every single process where man is involved begins with a well thought out plan. In this step, the conversion’s feasibility is assessed by understanding the loft size, the resident’s requirements, and the budget. The plans are then drawn up after or during the feasibility study. It should be noted that the design should be well within the parameters set by the current building laws so it won’t require a permit, acquiring which takes some time to finish.

2. Review the designs.
Determine whether your design fulfilled your requirements or not. Consult it with the local building control officer, and once you get his or her approval, move on to the actual building.

3. Renovate.
You’ll need to first renovate your attic such that it can accommodate a loft room. To start with, reinforce the ceiling joists. You may then add the stairs before or right after this to make the renovation a lot easier. Next, clear all obstructions and fill the spaces between the beams with insulating foam, after which you may add in the floor boards. You may then install the loft’s windows and construct the roof extensions. After this, keep some roof space allowance by setting vertical dividers against the roof support no less than 20cm from the eaves, apply insulation to the roof’s underside, then cover the walls with boards.

4. Set up the room.
Now that your loft is ready, start building the partitions and other necessary features according to the plans you’ve drawn. Work on this systematically, and keep everything structurally sound.

5. Add utilities.
Hire a certified electrician or plumber, as the law only allows qualified individuals to do this work. If you are accredited in both areas of expertise however, you can just do it on your own.

6. Furnish the loft.
The last part of our loft conversion guide is this hate-it-or-love-it step of loft conversion. This is when you should apply the final touches to the room, then furnish it in whatever way you wish.

How the attic ends up depends in how things are handled. As such, loft conversions should be done orderly and systematically, and guides such as this can help a lot in that regard.

4 Useful Loft Conversion Design Ideas

You live in a home with a roof space large enough to live in. Now you’re running out of living space. Maybe because you have gathered plenty of material possessions that you can’t just abandon; maybe you’ve been taking in too many relatives; maybe you’re a little too active in certain aspects of your married life and churned out more kids than your living space can afford; or maybe you simply feel like the habitable space in your residence isn’t just enough.

The problem however is for some reason, you can’t extend your house’s first floor. Often, you won’t feel like letting your house invade your lawn or you’ll find a first floor extension as expensive. The solution? Fix the attic and make a great room out of it.

What is Loft Conversion?

Not many home extension methods can be as practical as a loft conversion. Constructing a loft is a lot easier than building a first floor extension from the ground up. This is because with loft conversion, you already have the basic components of a structure: the canopy and wall provided by the roof’s underside, and the floor in the form of the attic side of the top floor’s ceiling. A little renovation will turn this once useless space into a room where you’d love to stay in.

Design Tips for Loft Conversion

You might be one of those planning to convert your attic into a comfortable living space. If that’s the case, here are a few useful tips:

1. Use space-saving furniture.
Lofts often won’t get a design akin to a regular room. You’ll find that the attic room has a lot of weirdly angled walls, and simply propping furniture against the inward slopes will leave you with a lot of wasted space. For this reason, get customized furniture tailored to fit snugly into the loft’s walls, so as to maximize your floor space.

2. Increase your headroom with dormer windows.
Windows are not only practical but are also required components of all lofts. We’d recommend that you install a dormer window, as it can provide some extra headroom. A bit more headroom can be really useful, as it increases the space you can use for various activities.

3. Minimize the décor.
Do not put too much decoration on your loft, particularly on the walls. Decorations are eye-catching objects, and too much of it can inevitably make your loft appear cluttered. Surely you won’t like that. Keep the embellishment at a minimum, and you’ll be surprised at how spacious it can make your loft appear.

4. Use white or light paint.
White paint or any other light colors for that matter is highly recommended when painting your loft. A light color scheme will give you the impression that the room is larger than it actually was. In contrast, dark colors highlight the walls’ opacity, making the room feel cramped and claustrophobic.

These loft conversion design ideas are useful in maximizing your floor space and creating a comfortable atmosphere for your loft. The loft should be as efficient as possible in all aspects, lest it ends up undesirable and remain as the useless space it used to be.

Factors that Determine the Loft Conversion Cost

Time tends to take a bad toll at one’s living space. Many years of residence in a house can make it end up with cramped interiors, cluttered with various possessions that can’t be done away with. Some consider this a problem, and one with plenty of solutions. The residents can either move somewhere more spacious or simply enlarge the first floor of their home. If either of these turn out impractical, there’s always loft conversion.

The Practicality of Loft Conversion

Now loft conversion is one of the most practical home extension methods. It is also the most popular, due to the fact that, compared to extending the first floor and moving, it is less complicated and costs less time. The relative ease of attic conversion is possible thanks to the roof and ceiling serving as the loft’s structure, requiring only certain modifications to make a habitable living space.

Determining the Loft Conversion Expenses

If you wish to convert your attic into a legitimate loft room, you first have to calculate the relevant prices and make a budget out of it. To give you an idea, the typical loft conversion cost starts from somewhere between £12,000 and £60,000. Note that this does not denote all the expenses to be shelled out during the entire process, as you still have to count the following in:

1. The loft’s design.
The loft conversion cost basically depends on the loft’s design. The more intricate your design is, the more expensive it gets and as such, it’s always recommended that the loft is made as simple as possible. Budget lofts typically cost a few grand, while those done mostly with professional help come at around £12,000 or higher.

2. The size of the loft room.
In loft conversion, the size matters. This determines how much materials are needed, how much these materials should cost, and how much should be spent to modify the structure in order to be up to existing standards. Materials always depend on the source, e. g., the manufacturers and the area from which these are purchased.

3. Loft access and windows.
Stairs, most lofts’ primary means of access are priced according to the design. As with lofts, the more complex it is, the more money you should shell out for it. The costs typically range from £500 to £2000. Windows meanwhile are either dormers, skylights, or both. Dormers, which are characterized by the extra headroom it provides, cost around £2000. Meanwhile skylights, which function as daytime lighting, can cost at around £600. Still, these all vary according to the manufacturer or contractor, and are cheap when constructed yourself.

4. The specialists involved.
There are certain tasks handed only by law to the right professionals. This includes the installation of plumbing and electricity among others. As such, you’ll have to pay the right people for such services, and again, the prices vary.

Having read up to this point, you’ve probably realized nowthat loft conversion isn’t cheap. This is a rather wise investment though. Plenty of benefits can be gained from owning a functional loft, and these are enough to outweigh all the conversion costs.

4 Factors to Consider When Employing a Loft Conversion Company

Is your home starting to look boring? Well there are plenty of ways to spice it up. You can start with some renovation work. You can rearrange your house’s interiors to your liking or maybe get some new decoration. In some cases however, makeover just isn’t enough. You also would probably need to add a good amount of extra space, for which home extension comes to play. Home extension is basically expanding your home in one way or another. Of all the possible methods to extend your house, a loft conversion is perhaps the most efficient.

The Loft Conversion Process

The process of loft conversion can be easily described as a means to increase your home’s floor space by transforming the attic into a more useful loft room. This task isn’t as simple as mere renovation. The room ought to abide to the existing building codes and as such, major changes ought to be done to the attic’s structure for the loft to be up to legal standards. Such changes can even go as far as changing your roof such that it can accommodate conversion.

Considerations Before Hiring a Loft Conversion Company

While some prefer to convert their lofts on their own, there are many who opt for the simpler solution: employ the services of a loft conversion company who will do virtually all conversion work for them. If you’re among those who prefer the latter, here are a few considerations that you should ponder upon before hiring a conversion firm:

1. Is the price good enough for your budget?
First off, consider your budget. Ask the companies you’ve been eyeing for conversion prices and compare the quotes with your money at hand. See if it matches your funds or not. It may be cheap or expensive, but just make sure that you get the best quality for the lowest possible price.

2. Is the company honest and/or has a well-established reputation?
Stick to doing business with reputable and honest companies. See to it that the company you are about to choose does not engage in shady practices, such as asking for a number of payments before any work is done.

3. How much can the firm do in so little time?
Efficient companies achieve the best possible conversion within a short time frame. Hiring such firm can actually save you a lot of money, as you’ll tend to spend less on miscellaneous expenses if the conversion takes a short time to complete.

4. Are the loft conversion company’s previous outputs satisfactory?
Learn about the previous outputs of the conversion firms you were eyeing to work for you. Select the company whose product delivers in both form and function. Make sure however, that it’s still within the budget you’ve allotted to the conversion process.

In summary, the conversion firm that you must choose to build your loft must be cost-effective, trustworthy, and overall good at the job given to them. This all boils down to efficiency, no more, no less.

Basic Loft Conversion Building Regulations

It truly is inevitable that one day, you’ll just find your living space is no longer adequate for you, your family, and all your belongings. Why not just buy a larger, more spacious house? Why purchase of property and the cost of moving may take a huge financial toll, so for many, this solution may be off the list. Then again, you can renovate the interiors and rearrange everything in such a way that the house can get some extra space. How much space can that method add is a big question, and the answer may not satisfy many. Alternatively, you can enlarge your home and save a lot of money while gaining a significant amount of floor space.

There are plenty of options to expand one’s home. Most of these deal with simply adding several square feet to the lot area occupied by the house. These may be all good in rural and suburban homes where lot space is not an issue, but are just impractical in houses located in cramped large towns and urban settings. There is, however, one home extension method that does not require open space to extend to. This is called loft conversion, a very popular home extension method in the US, UK, and many other countries.

Loft Conversion: An Explanation

What do we mean by loft conversion? Well this is a home extension method where you convert your normally unused attic to a functional room that’s fit for use as a living space, storage, and the like. This method is so flexible that this can be applied to just about any residential building with a roof. Many prefer this as it is not as complicated and arduous as other loft conversion methods, and simply because a loft makes for a really pleasant room.

Nevertheless, a loft conversion is never as simple as doing some structural strengthening and furnishing the attic in order to create what looks like a functional room. There are still loft conversion building regulations that need to be followed. These regulations are all geared to help you build a practical and safe attic room so there’s no need to fear that they’re mere restrictions.

You Don’t Have to Get Permit for the Conversion

Now loft conversions don’t always need permits, but only if you follow these building rules:

• The loft should be no higher than the roof, or no wider than the space the canopy covers.
• 40m3 and 50m3 roof space allowance is required for terraced and detached/semi-detached homes, respectively.
• All openings must be 1.7m above the floor, and side-facing windows ought to be given obscure glazing.
• There should be no open features such as verandas, balconies, and the like.
• Apart from hip-and-gable, roof extensions like dormers should be no less than 20 centimeters away from the lower edges of the roof; all roof extensions are prohibited in designated areas like national parks.
• In any case, roof extensions are prohibited in houses situated in designated and protected areas.

These are but mere provisions to follow in order to build your loft straightaway without the need of getting a permit. Thus, you don’t need to limit your loft’s design to these if you are willing to spend money on acquiring the necessary papers. Building control officers are your friends for this matter, as they are the most knowledgeable in terms of loft conversion building regulations.

Loft Conversion Advice for Beginners

A loft conversion can be a great way to spice up that home of yours. It is one of the most efficient home extension methods in a way that it does not demand as much resources as other ways to expand the house’s floor space. Thus, loft conversion has become very popular to many homeowners and home improvement enthusiasts.

Reasons to Opt for Loft Conversion

Indeed, a loft conversion is a really great alternative to home extension methods like single and multiple storey extensions. This is because of all the benefits one can get after the conversion process. The first is, of course, all that additional space. That space can be used for just about anything, giving you a lot of freedom to design your loft as you please. Also, lofts add more or less 20% to the house’s real property value. This means that after loft conversion, you may be able to sell your home at a price 20% higher than when it was first bought.

A Few Useful Tips

If you wish to convert your loft, and it’s your first time doing so, you may need some heads up before proceeding. Consider the following loft conversion advice:

1. When in doubt, consult the building control officer.
The building control officer is one of the most helpful people you can go to when converting your loft. You can ask him or her about the existing laws for loft conversion, and even consult with your loft designer if you already have one.

2. Plan your loft thoroughly.
Make a detailed plan. Do make sure the loft is designed within the limits of existing loft conversion regulations and the budget you’ve set aside for the conversion. Nevertheless, going beyond the rules is possible as it will only require a planning permission from the local building authorities. This however may delay the conversion and may cost you more than originally planned.

3. Employ some professional help.
Doing the conversion work all by yourself is cheaper, but that’s only true if you have the necessary skills and accreditation to complete everything on your own or with minimal help. If this is not the case, hire professionals to work on the tasks you have a hard time dealing with, or some work where you are simply not good at.

4. Be ready to make changes.
During the actual conversion process, expect to encounter situations where you’ll be required to alter your original designs. Do not let this stall the work by forcing a solution that can allow your unaltered plan to push through. Instead, learn to make changes where possible, and make sure that such changes are satisfactory.

5. Make sure you don’t affect your neighbors.
Remember that you are not alone in the block. Consider your neighbors once you’ve started the conversion. Make sure that your loft does not intrude into their homes or backyards. If conflict arises, do make a compromise that is beneficial to both parties.

Here’s a quick summary of all these loft conversion advice: plan carefully, be flexible, don’t just solo the work, and consider both the building laws and your neighborhood. Be quick and don’t be hasty, and always think things through.

Fundamentals of Loft Conversion: Roof Types

What could possibly be a better solution to the problem of shrinking living space other than home extension? Truly, extending the floor space is one of the best ways to address such problem. There are several ways for one to achieve this, and loft conversion is one such home extension method that stands out above the rest. It is popular to many homeowners, and that doesn’t go without reason.
What Loft Conversion Does and Why Go for It

What does loft conversion do? Basically, it transforms the attic into a loft room that can be used for a variety of purposes. Such increases the house’s floor space by repurposing the attic, the largest unused and possibly misused space in the house.

There are many occasions however when a loft conversion simply is not practical or may cost a large sum of money. Nevertheless, many still opt to choose a loft conversion as a means to add more living space to their homes and there are two main reasons why they do so. First off, it obviously does not need lot space to cover as a loft extension means building a new room into the house. Thus, there is not as much need for new edifices as other home extension methods, thereby saving a lot of money on the construction and the materials. The other is that loft conversion can be applied to most houses with a sloped roof, regardless of the location.

3 Common Roofing Architecture

The possibility of having a loft conversion is determined by several factors. One of the most important determinants is perhaps the house’s roofing architecture. The three common loft conversion roof types are as follows:

1. Hipped roofing
Hipped roofs are also known as the “common” rafter roofing due to it having rafter conversion-friendly supports. Outwardly, it features sloped roof surfaces on all of its sides. While convertibility is guaranteed on this roof type, it can only offer a small area with sufficient head room and as such, significantly smaller floor space than what is actually covered by the ceiling.

2. Truss roofing
A common modern roofing type, the truss is defined by the W-shaped beams supporting the canopy. These beams, known as trusses cannot be modified without significantly weakening the structure, thus rendering loft conversion impossible. Should you choose to proceed with the conversion though, you’ll need to replace the roof, often with the more conversion-friendly hipped roofing.

3. Gable roofing
A gabled roof is simply one supported by high walls known as gables in two or more sides. This, like the hipped roof is also convertible, but is more advantageous as its design makes possible the conversion of a far larger portion of the attic. There are three types of gable roofing: gable, gambrel, and salt box. The first refers to gable roofs with a single uniform pitch; the second has two sections, one higher than the other; and the third has a rather varied pitch.

Before starting any conversion project, it is always best to first determine which of these loft conversion roof types is the one on your house. Through this you can learn just how practical the conversion will be, and what type of conversion is best constructed in your attic.

Loft Conversion: Stairs to Access the Loft

Loft conversion is one of today’s most popular home extension methods. It was barely existent before the fad started some fifty years ago in New York’s SoHo district. Back then, it was practiced secretly by interior design artists, and obscurely by those non-artistic individuals who have found out that they can make use of all the attic space.
Nowadays, loft conversion has become a far too common way to improve and increase the value of one’s home. There’s virtually no need to wonder why. Renovating the attic simply is more versatile and cheaper in terms of time and effort when compared to its alternatives like first floor extension and conservatory construction.

An Overview of Loft Conversion

Loft conversion, as we all know, is a home extension method that involves cleaning out the attic, reinforcing its structure, and touching it up in a way that it becomes a functional loft room. As the attic is the largest unused space of most homes, converting it to a loft adds a lot of square feet to your existing living space, all the while significantly raising your home’s value on the side.

Types of Loft Stairs

Access is one of the most important things to consider during loft conversion. Stairs, perhaps, is the first thing that would come to mind at this point. Indeed, it is the norm, being a very practical way to get to the top floor. The following are the common types of loft stairs:

1. Fixed stairs
Fixed stairs have the simplest design and construction and is very easy to use. This type can be practical in all cases, if not for the fact that it takes up a lot of floor space.

2. Loft ladders
This is usually collapsible ladders stored near the loft door and can be pulled down in order to access the loft. This is often used in lofts that do not require regular access, like attic storage for example.

3. Spiralling stairs
Stairs going up in a helix is a convenient alternative to fixed stairways. Although a lot harder to build, it saves a lot more floor space than the more straightforward fixed stairs.

4. Disappearing/Folding stairs
Folding or disappearing stairs are just like pull-down loft ladders, but can be folded and hidden cleverly when not in use. This can be either telescopic or accordion type. The former features steps that unfold one by one while the latter have hinged treads that unfold together, much like an accordion.

5. Alternating steps stairs
As its name makes obvious, alternating steps stairs have treads that alternate between the left and right foot. As a result, it has a steep angle, and thus takes less floor space than fixed stairs. It is easy to construct but is not guaranteed safe, especially for people with difficulties climbing up the stairs.

Building loft access is one of the most important parts of loft conversion. Stairs or any other form of loft access therefore, should be chosen carefully, with safety and practicality considered above all else.