Most Popular Types of Loft Conversions in UK Homes
Loft conversions are a popular choice for homeowners to take advantage of the empty space on their house roofs by transforming them into functional rooms. But not all lofts are the same. Some loft conversions are generally more expensive than others, some are visually more appealing, and some provide more useful attic space. In this text, we cover four of the most common types of loft conversions in the UK and all you need to know about them.
- Dormer Lofts
A simple flat roof dormer is a popular loft conversion type in most UK homes. This is a box-shaped structural extension projected vertically from the bottom of the roof’s slope. It can provide maximum headroom in your cramped loft fit for installation of conventional windows for good ventilation and light. Dormer loft conversions are suitable for a variety of house styles, and you’ll hardly need planning permission before conversion. Plus, you can decide to have it hipped-roofed, or gable-fronted, which can make the front of your house more pleasing (but comes with an extra cost).
- Hip to Gable Lofts
Hip to gable loft conversions are becoming an increasingly popular style for most UK homeowners. If your property has a reasonably small internal volume, this style can be your best solution to maximise your space for extra living space or offices. This is achieved by changing the hipped side of the roof to a flat gable end. They are an ideal conversion type for detached, semi-detached and terraced houses. Since the outline of the roof will be changed during the conversion process, you may need to have planning permission.
- Mansard Lofts
Mansard lofts gained their popularity in London due to their ability to provide maximum attic space - you can make use of the entire roof space, hence more headroom. This type is most popular in urban areas and, especially terraced houses. They are usually constructed on the backside of a house and have flat roofs and back walls sloping inwards at 72 degrees. However, they involve more construction work and significant change to your home’s structure, and would often require planning permission. You need to have a proper demarcation barrier system in place for your safety when accessing the roof both during and after the construction process. You’ll also invest more money in this type than with any other type discussed here.
- Roof-Light Lofts
Also known as Velux loft conversions (Velux roof windows have been in the market for 50+ years), roof-light loft conversions are one of the most cost-effective loft conversion styles available. They involve fitting sloping window(s) pointing towards the sky to the roof-line of an already existing (sloping) roof without changing its original structure. Normally, you won’t require planning permission for this type, except when the windows are at the front. You’ll also have limited headroom as it doesn’t allow for any more useful space.
The type of loft conversion to apply in your home could, in most instances, depend on your roof type, permitted development rights, and your budget. It’s important that you consult an expert’s help to determine the most suitable type you need, and advise on whether you need planning permission or not. Good luck!