Converting the loft is one of the most cost-effective ways to add extra living space to a home. New rooms within the roof can benefit from sunlight for much of the day, make the most of any views, and can have tremendous character due to the interesting roof shape.
At the top of the house the roof space can be the ideal location for a new master bedroom, a home office, playroom or even a self-contained annexe, but the new rooms can be suitable for almost any residential use you can think of, providing you comply with the Building Regulations.
Unlike most extensions, a loft conversion adds space without building over the garden. The only sacrifice is the space required to accommodate access via a new staircase.
A loft conversion is a much more cost-effective option than moving home, especially when an additional bedroom is required. Most property experts agree that a loft conversion is the home improvement that will add most financial value to your house, adding up to 15 – 20% to its market value depending on where you live.
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The main styles of dormer conversions include:
Flat-Roof Dormer – A Dormer Conversion with a flat roof
Gable-Fronted Dormer – Sometimes called ‘Doghouse’ Dormer
Hipped-Roof Dormer – A Dormer Conversion with a hipped roof
Shed Dormer – A Single Planed Roof that is pitched at a lesser angle than the main roof
Dormer and l-shaped dormer loft conversion
A dormer loft conversion is an extension to the existing roof that projects vertically from a sloping roof, creating additional floor space and headroom within the property. Internally, a dormer has vertical walls and a horizontal ceiling. It is the most common type of loft conversion, as the flat roof dormers often add the maximum amount of additional space. In addition, it is possible to create a gable front and a hipped roof dormer to make it look more attractive, however these types of dormers do not offer as much internal space. Additionally, due to the added complexity, a gable front and hipped roof dormer will cost more to build. The l-shaped dormer loft conversion is also very popular and is often considered the best way to extend a mid-terrace period property to maximize space as it can give around 40m3 of space or slightly more under planning.
Advantage: Normally a dormer loft conversion can be constructed without gaining planning permission, although planning permission may be required depending on the specifications.
Mansard and L-shaped mansard loft conversion
A mansard loft conversion, named after the 17th-century French Architect Francois Mansard, is situated to the rear of the property. This type of conversion has a flat roof, with the back wall sloping inwards at an angle of 72 degrees. Windows are usually housed within small dormers.
Mansard loft conversions normally require planning permissions, due to the large changes to the roof shape and structure.
In addition, we specialise in l-shaped mansard loft conversions, which can really open up the space and add even more value to your property. The l-shaped mansard loft conversion works particularly well if you are converting the loft into an open-plan bedroom with en-suite.
Double mansard loft conversion
This is similar to a normal mansard but also with a mansard to the front. This is not possible in most areas of London due to planning restrictions however we have been known to do this in Fulham, Clapham and Wimbledon but only when we have been able to do a few together. We recently did one street in Fulham where 22 neighbours gained permission collectively.
Velux loft conversion
Velux Loft Conversions are also known as rooflight loft conversions. Velux is the leading manufacturer of roof windows so hence the name.
With this type of project, the roofline is unaltered, as the velux windows are installed fitting flush to the roofline, leaving the original roof structure untouched. Therefore, planning permission is not generally required, making it an attractive option for many. Also, due to the fact that no large alterations need to be made to the roof, the cost of the conversion generally remains lower.
Hip-to-gable and L-shaped hip-to-gable loft conversion
The majority of houses that are hip roofed in style tend to have a reasonably small internal volume, so for a conversion to be practical, a hip-to-gable conversion is a smart solution. This type of conversion involves changing the sloping side of the property to a flat gable end. This increases the size of the loft space, often creating extra space for the staircase. As this type of loft conversion changes the outline of the roof, planning permissions may well be required. We also specialize in l-shaped hip-to-gable loft conversions.
Loft conversion with full back addition
A full back addition is where we not only build a loft over the main part of the house but also over the back addition if available. Although this is not possible in some areas of London it is feasible in the Wandsworth area where we have done quite a few. As it is not known how long this option will be available, if you live in Wandsworth and need additional space we would recommend you contact us now to take advantage before this opportunity disappears! A full back addition allows you to almost replicate your first floor in terms of space and design giving you the possibility for even three or four new rooms. No other type of loft conversion gives you as much additional space.
Loft conversion with roof terrace
Planning regulations have become more relaxed of late in relation to roof terraces, however you are still likely to have most success with the planner if you live in Wandsworth or Hammersmith and Fulham. Roof terraces always require planning permission so are dependent on the leniency of local planners for permission. In our experience roof terraces appear more popular in areas with a large number of flats as space is a premium and gardens tend to be either small or dark, or both. Recently we have done a number of conversions with roof terraces in the Sands End area of Fulham SW6 for these reasons and have noted that these are the properties that have then sold for record amounts in the area!