How to Add a Balcony to Your House
You can add a balcony to your home when you get a loft conversion, extension or other building work done.
There are a few things to consider when adding a balcony to a property which doesn’t already have one:
- What type of balcony will it be?
- Where on the property will it be?
- Do I need planning permission for a balcony?
- How will the balcony be supported?
What type of Balcony?
There are four main types of balcony to choose from, some of which may be unsuitable for certain types of property:
- Raised Platform
- Rooftop Balcony
- Window Balcony
- Juliet Balcony
- Bi-Fold Balcony
A raised platform is the most traditional looking type of balcony where there is a separate platform sticking out from the main building with a door leading to it and some sort of balustrade around the edges.
A rooftop balcony is a flat roof with a door access and balustrade around the edges.
A window balcony is a special type of roof light which is fitted between the rafters of a roof (usually as part of a loft conversion) which opens out to form a platform and balustrade big enough for a person to stand or sit on.
A Juliet balcony is effectively a set of double doors with a balustrade across it, allowing a lot of air and light into a room above ground level without allowing the occupant to go outside.
A Bi-Fold balcony is where the upper part of one wall in a room is removed and replaced with a series of connected windows which can be opened and folded away together at one end, leaving the remaining wall to act as a balustrade and turning the entire room into a balcony.
Where on the property will it be?
Some types of balconies lend themselves to being built in certain places, such as a window balcony which can only be built in a sloping roof.
A rooftop balcony can only be built on a flat roof, so if you are planning to build a single storey extension you could make an access to the roof from a room on the first floor.
If you are having a double height extension, you could have access from a dormer or mansard with a loft conversion.
A Juliet balcony can be built in any vertical wall or in the side of a dormer as part of a loft conversion.
Bi-fold balconies are be built into a wall and benefit from having larger walls to be built into to get the best effect.
Do I need planning permission for a balcony?
With the exception of Juliet Balconies, all types of balcony will need planning permission.
Most of the types of balcony listed will give you a better view of your neighbours (assuming that you have some) and this is likely to be grounds for rejection if you live in quite a built up area.
Having Bi-fold windows doesn’t technically give you a better view than you have previously, but it will require planning permission because it is a significant change to the existing windows, replacing one or two windows with an entire wall of them.
If you would like some advice about building a balcony, extension or loft conversion, please give us a call.