We often get asked to investigate converting loft spaces for our clients. If you are considering carrying out a loft conversion here is a list of issues to consider.
- Have a good look in the loft space if it is safe to do so, ask for assistance if you are using a ladder for access. Assess the height of the current space.
- Measure the floor to ceiling level at first floor, this will help you establish if there is enough room to drop ceilings to create head room above the new floor.
- Ascertain whether the roof is constructed with trusses or rafters and purlins.
- Assess how much height is available above the current staircase position, stacking the new staircase above existing is usually the most efficient way to gain access and maximise floor space.
- If you share party walls with your neighbours, you will need to follow the steps outlined in the party wall act. This is usually because new steel work is required at ridge level and various upgrades to the walls are required (fire & acoustic).
- Fire escape – assess whether a protected escape can be created around the staircase.
- Think about access, the works can include movement of large joists and steel work, can this be achieved through the property, or will larger equipment be required?
- Familiarize yourself with the Construction, Design and Management Regulations 2015, understand your responsibilities and those of the project team – including your contractor.
- and finally . . . disruption – can you move out during the most intensive stage of the works?
We have included some photographs of a recent project undertaken by our clients Charlotte and Darren, to give you a flavour of what to expect.