Is my loft big enough


Turning loft areas into habitable rooms is an effective way of adding space to your home.  Looks can be deceptive- the dusty and dingy space may hardly look like a bedroom, but with the right design it can be transformed into a light and airy space. When you first venture into the loft and contemplate that extra bedroom, the space may look cavernous and enormous, again this can be deceptive- with structural beams in place , the actual usable space can become limited.

Gaining permission to convert a loft can be a walk in the park or utterly cumbersome depending on the council you come under and the architectural character of your neighbourhood.  If your property has never been extended you may be able to convert your roof space by adding a dormer under permitted development rights where no planning permission will be required. However the size of your dormer will depend on a fixed percentage of extendable volume. This varies from 10 to 15 % of the total volume of the house, and council guidelines.  Planning Permission will be required if your property has already been extended. Loft conversions invariably involve altering the roof structure to add a rear facing dormer. Modifications to the front are infrequent and are only allowed if it keeps with the personality of the house and the surrounding area. These are some of the important aspects the planning officer will consider when processing your planning application.

–    The size of the ‘apron’. That is the distance between the existing roof eaves and the spring point of the dormer

–    The distance between the top of the dormer and the existing roof ridge line

–    The distance between the party wall and the new dormer( if you are in a terraced property)

–    The materials and finish of the dormer.

Planning officers are typically concerned with the exterior of the property, so you may find them to be slightly unsympathetic to what can actually fits into the loft space with the tiny dormer they have just approved!.  

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