Loft extensions in London - at what cost?
The London loft extension is probably one of the biggest residential development
scheme there is. Most city dwellers live in properties that do not benefit from generous side or rear gardens for
the traditional single or two storey extension.
Therefore your London loft extension or conversion is often the only route left for adding that extra living
Fortunately, most London loft conversions are fairly easy to install as most roof voids have been constructed
using traditional timber carcassing techniques (not pre-formed trusses). Most lofts have internal struts, ties and
props to support the rafters and ceiling joists which need to be removed. The revised and redistributed loads from
the roof will now normally be supported by additional floor joists, beams and perimeter walling.
Loft extensions in London can have their construction costs reduced by the use of roof lights rather than dormer
windows. Velux roof lights seem to have the market share for London loft extensions. However, a dormer window will
add some additional full height walking are space that can be of benefit for the room or en-suite for example.
Most homeowners considering their loft extension in London often approach their local builder for initial advice
which is often a waste of time as they are often unfamiliar with the site specific requirements need in satisfying
Planning Permission, Permitted Development or the Building Regulations. Therefore all London home owners should
first consult with an experienced Building Designer if only to establish the merits and constraints of the
An alternative approach for the London home owner is to have their loft extension looked at by a specialist loft
extension or conversion company who will normally provide an initial design scope of works & budget costing.
Most employ their own Building Designer as a sub contractor who will be more interested in looking after the main
contractors affairs rather than your own (he who pays the piper).
A well designed and executed loft extension in London can add really useful space to a home provided the sloping
ceiling area within the converted loft is not too great and the original ridge height is 3M or higher. Regretfully
however, many London loft extensions end up being too restricted for a fully functional bedroom space due to
restricted head height over a too larger area of the new room created.
By engaging your own building designer for that London Loft extension or conversion right from the start, they
will be able to advise you of the main issues and prepare a loft conversion scheme with you to your own
requirements and carefully guide you through the Council approvals required.