People think that planning a loft extension is as easy as it sounds. It can be an elaborate process depending on how big this home improvement project is. For those who are not aware of what loft extension is all about, this is a project that involves creating extra usable space in your home’s attic area.
Loft extension planning makes the entire project proceed smoothly. It involves hiring professional architects and other service providers, designing the roof and the entire space, and getting the permissions approved and paperwork signed as well as supervising the project.
Whether this is your first time doing a loft extension project or not, this guide will help with amazing tips on how to go about this project. Visit Supa Group if you’d like to know more about home extensions.
How to Select a Professional Architecture Firm
Have you ever done a loft extension before? If you have, you already know that the first step after deciding to convert your loft is finding a professional architect. The architect is actively involved in the entire project as we are going to see. If you are in the UK, reputable architecture firms like Humphreysandsons will take care of your needs. But if you have to, consider the following points when choosing one.
Check their track record – This gives you an idea of the loft extension projects they have handled before and their overall experience. You can evaluate their track record from their website, social media pages, and independent review websites. However, some firms may not have many years in operation, but they might be working with experienced architects.
- Check their packages – Many firms offer a variety of services such as loft extension design and planning, permission application, party wall arbitration, and other related services. Many reputable firms also supervise projects and ensure that all the standards are maintained.
- Check licenses and other documents – An architecture firm with the right licenses is the best to work with. So, they must provide proof of these documents before you enter into a deal with them to convert your loft. Other endorsements and documentations prove that you are working with the best architecture firm.
- Check their customer service – Although a loft extension is not as detailed as building a whole house, you still need to work with an architecture firm with the best customer service. So, check this and make the right decision.
- Check their fees – Architects do charge for their services, which may vary depending on the scope of the project, the experience of the architects, and more. This is a consideration worth giving enough time before making a decision. Ensure that the charges are within competitive percentages.
Choosing the Best Loft Extension Design
Now that you have an architect to help implement your loft extension project, you need to think of the best loft designs and ideas. Popular loft extension types are named after their roof designs, and we will discuss a few of them here.
- Dormer loft extension – This involves adding a box-shaped structure on a pitched roof with windows running vertically. This is great when you want plenty of space. Dormer loft extension is popular and can be either single or double depending on the design you want to achieve. Also, it could be a front or rear dormer.
- Mansard loft extension – This design is a bit interesting and can be confused with a dormer. However, the main difference is that the design is always done at the back of the house and may have a vertical wall that is 72 degrees to the floor. It also creates more headroom and floor room in your newly built loft space.
- Roof light loft extension – This is simple and only involves adding a window to your pitched roof. It requires a high-pitched roof for the space to be usable as a living area. This may make an excellent gym or family room rather than a bedroom.
- Hip-to-gable extension – If you have a pitched roof and decide to turn one side into a vertical wall, then this becomes a hip-to-gable loft conversion. This is the best extension if you are looking for a big space such as a self-contained bedroom.
Applying for Loft Extension Permission
Some loft extension projects fall within permitted development and do not require any permissions. However, a few may be detailed, especially when they require party wall arbitration and legal services. All in all, you might need the services of a loft conversion planning expert to go through various limitations and conditions.
Architecture firms are still the best experts to help you through this process. If you are required to apply for planning permission with the authorities, they will take care of the applications, prepare supporting documents, and do all the necessary follow-ups. So, you should work with the right professionals to go through the process without stress.
Benefits of Loft Extension
There are many reasons why you should do a loft extension this year. One of the benefits is to create extra space such as an extra bedroom for your growing family. As we have seen, any of the designs can get you an amazing usable space that you need for your family.
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Another benefit is that most loft extension projects are affordable, especially when there is a good plan, use of the right materials, correct supervision, and selection of the right architects and other service providers.
Loft extension improves the market value of your house, making it easy for you to get a larger home equity loan or sell your house in the future. If you are curious about the new value of your house after a successful loft conversion, you can talk to a real estate agent to help you. The home also gains better aesthetics and becomes more marketable.
Loft extension is an amazing project that you should consider for your home this year. As mentioned, a professional architecture firm will ensure that you plan accordingly and that you have the easiest loft extension project. So, the work of hiring the best firm and the rest will be easy. All the best with your project.
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