Can I have a loft conversion?
"Can I have a loft conversion at my property?"
This is a question we get asked a lot and the answer is generally "yes, as long as you have a loft".
No two loft conversions are ever the same and the main things which will limit the potential for a loft conversion are:
- The property itself
How Expensive is a Loft Conversion?
Loft conversion costs vary with size and complexity, typical figures are:
- Roof light conversion = £25k to £30k
- Dormer conversion = £27k - £50k
- Hip-to-gable conversion = £42k to £50k
- Mansard conversion = £40k upwards
These costs are the all-in cost for design and build, from start to finish, including planning permission, building regulations, structural design and construction.
The cost of a loft conversion has risen steadily over the last five years, mainly due to the increase in the price of timber and labour costs. Many building contractors have not increased their prices in line with new costs and will often quote at a loss and then look to recoup the money during the project by asking for more from the client.
We don't think this is a good way to do business so we quote honestly, based on realistic prices.
Limitations on converting a loft
The property which is to receive the loft conversion can often be a source of limitation, particularly if it has:
- A small footprint
- Adjacent properties joined to it (terrace)
- Properties opposite or behind it in close proximity
- Value of the property
Very small houses or properties with very shallow roofs may yield small converted spaces, which can be off-putting to potential clients.
With that said, even small terrace houses can benefit from a good sized loft conversion with the use of dormers, which is why it is the most popular type of loft conversion. For a typical terraced house, adding a dormer to the rear elevation of the roof and a roof light to the front does not require planning permission.
Adding dormers to the front or sides of a property will require a planning application, which can be rejected if the local authority feels that the changes will be creating too much shade over a neighbouring property or overlooking it to an extent that the privacy of the occupiers will be unduly compromised.
The value of the property (and often the location it is in) will determine how much value is added to it with a loft conversion.
As an example, consider two identical houses in different areas, one affluent, one not; they both have the same £30k loft conversion - a large bedroom with an ensuite - the house in the affluent area is now revalued at £40k more than before, whereas the other house has only increased in value by £20k because it is limited by the location it is in.
A loft conversion on some properties will add more value than was spent on it, but not all.
For many people, a loft conversion gives them a space which improves their lives, such as giving a teenage child a bedroom, or creating an office so that someone can work from home full time. Having a new space at home which does something like this can be life changing and is worth the price, even if it is not fully realised immediately in the revaluation of the property.
If you are considering having a loft conversion, give us a ring and see if we can help you!