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5 tips for loft conversions

The first thing to consider is, will your loft be more useful as a living space or an area which you use to store things, that in honesty, are unlikely to be ever used again. A loft conversion will make your home much more valuable and much more sellable, particularly so if you can fit a bathroom or shower room up there as well as a bedroom, the perfect master or guest suite.

Secondly you will have to consider the cost which for the average loft conversion will be in the region of£20,000; however it can be a lot more depending on the size, and type of conversion. At the cheaper end of the scale it’s likely that the conversion will use only skylights, not an ideal solution if there is limited headroom. Adding a dormer, particularly across the whole width of the roof will give much more room.

The third thing to consider relates very much to the second and that is the height of the main space, this ideally should be no less than 2.3 metres in height, so the steeper the roof the better the end result will be. The way to test this is where it is safe to do so you should walk around the loft space; this will tell you just how much space there is that’s practical and useable. If you find that the height is insufficient to stand up and walk around then the only solution will be to lower the ceilings of the rooms below. This and rebuilding the roof are radical steps and a very expensive ones.

Number four will be how are you going to get into the newly created roof space? Climbing a pull down leader is not an option so it has to be a staircase and the best and most space saving is the spiral type. Where the stairs are situated is another factor and if this means sacrificing a bedroom, you would be no better off by converting the roof space.

Finally you may see houses for sale which advertise with a “loft room” rather than saying it has a certain number of bedrooms, including a loft bedroom. Normally it is because the “loft room” doesn’t comply with building regulations. This is a great pity having sent all the time and money converting the loft and being unable to reap the benefits. Naturally these can often be modified to meet building regulations, this then allows it to be officially called a bedroom and it also makes it safe to use it as one. Your local council’s building control department will be able to advise you, as they enforce building regulations.

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