Before we can make a start on building your loft extension it is first necessary to conduct a survey, complete a design proposal and ensure that the extension complies with the current building regulations. One of the most important of these regulations is covered in Approved Document A: Structure, which ensures that the structural elements such as steel beams and the new roof and roof and floor joists are designed against failure by a qualified structural engineer.
Architectural design of your loft conversion or extension:
In order to achieve the layout you desired, be it a large master bedroom with an en-suite, or two smaller bedrooms, we, along with our architect and structural engineer (or your own if you prefer), will liaise with you to ensure that the design is exactly as you want it.
Unless your home is in a conservation area, your extension can be carried out under Permitted Development regulations, meaning that as long as certain criterion are adhered to, such as ensuring that the extension is no greater than 40 cubic metres in volume for a terraced house, or 50 cubic metres to a detached or semi-detached house, the build can go ahead without the need for planning permission.
In some instances, such as if you live in a top floor flat or a conservation area, planning permission will be required. Our architect will produce designs for your extension and submit them for planning approval, which often takes around 4-8 weeks to process and get a decision.
The conversion must comply with the local regulations, including the aforementioned structural elements, fire, ventilation, insulation and conservation of energy and electrical components. These are generally stipulated by our architect to ensure that it fully complies with the legal regulations.
Party-wall agreement notice:
For terraced and semi-detached houses, it is generally necessary for part of the new structure – generally structural steel elements – to sit on or within the party-wall shard with your neighbour. A general requirement is to seek the permission from the neighbour. This is normally not any issue, and can be done informally by either yourselves or us. However, we always insist on obtaining a signature from the neighbour just to keep everything above board.
Building control officer inspections and fees:
In order to check that the loft conversion is being built to building regulations, a building control officer (either from the local council or a private company) will make a series of inspections both during and upon completion of the project. Like everything else, this will all be effectively handled to make the whole project as hassle-free for yourselves as possible.
We can quote from existing plans if you already have them, and tailor the specific details of the build, such and door and window styles, flooring finishes and bespoke storage solutions to your particular needs. Alternatively we can handle all of this for you, and work in conjunction with our architect to ensure you will be delighted with the end product.