Instead of looking to extend their houses outwards, more and more homeowners in South-west London are raising their sights to convert their lofts into valuable living space. From an additional bedroom or lounge to a home office or playroom, there’s plenty of choice as to how to use the space, and with creative design, careful planning, meticulous execution and precise attention to detail, at Refresh Renovations we can complete the project in a cost-effective and time-efficient manner.
Refresh is designed to make life easy for busy owners. We'll provide you with one point of contact, end-to-end project management and a highly experienced team of tradespeople. All you need to do is tell us your wishlist and we'll take care of every aspect of the design and build.
...and anything else you can think of!
Although all construction projects differ in size and complexity, a typical loft conversion will take in the region of eight weeks, with the schedule of work dividing into a number of discrete phases. Having undertaken careful design and planning, the first fortnight of the build is spent on preparation, the erection of scaffolding (if required) and the delivery of materials. The latter part of the second week may also be used to secure and support the roof structure, while weeks three and four would be spent installing the loft floor and adding insulation, ventilation and stud walls. This period would also see work on the roof and the installation of dormer windows or roof lights as required, and weeks five to eight would include the installation of the staircase and the breaking through to link the loft to the main house. Carpentry, electrics, plumbing and decorating would also be completed during this phase.
When you’re considering a loft conversion it’s easy to become disheartened if you look through the hatch and see what appears to be a maze of ‘W’ shaped roof trusses that make the space seem cramped. On the plus side, however, it’s important to remember that to comply with building regulations the loft only needs to be 2.4 metres at its highest point, while the final conversion needs to have a minimum of 2 metres of standing room. In addition, it’s possible to remove superfluous roof trusses and replace them with steel or timber alternatives that provide structural support across the length of the loft space. Compact lofts can easily look and feel cluttered, but inspired interior design can avoid the impression of being overcrowded with even a large piece of signature furniture possibly featuring prominently. Adding a dormer window or two can also increase the sense of space by allowing light in and creating different zones, while strategically placed mirrors can bounce light throughout the conversion. In essence, however large or small your property, a clever loft conversion can add both space and value, while also enriching your quality of life.
The size and nature of the rooms you’ll add with a loft conversion will depend on the head height and floor space available, but it will also vary according to the objectives you have for the conversion. Loft conversions are commonly used for an additional bedroom, often with an en-suite bathroom, but the fact that the new room will be away from the hustle and bustle of the main house leads many homeowners to utilise the additional space as a calming oasis or a tranquil home office. An alternative for this largely wasted space is as an extra living room which can, with a little creativity, benefit from panoramic views and lots of natural light, or as a dedicated home cinema or TV room. Despite its inevitably sloping roofline, a converted loft can also serve as a library, particularly if you’re open to customised shelving, while a yoga room or home gym is also a possibility if you’re prepared to strengthen and insulate the floor to limit the resulting noise from the equipment.
In the main, loft conversions are classed as permitted development, which suggests that architectural drawings may not be required. Engaging an architect can, however, have significant benefits, not least of which is their ability to make the best use of the available space in your loft to give your conversion maximum impact. Commissioning professional drawings and plans can also be beneficial in providing an overall brief for the build phase, so the cost of an architect can actually save money down the line. With everyone working to the same floor plans, elevations, site plans and roof plans, the chances of any errors or misunderstandings occurring are vastly reduced, and the accuracy and detail of the drawings will also help everyone adhere to the budget and schedule. Finally, should you find that you do need to apply for planning permission, for example if you’re making changes to the exterior of the roof, architectural drawings can dramatically improve the chances of success, especially if the architect has experience of the local authority’s policies.
We’re delighted to offer you a complimentary no-obligation consultation in your home to discuss your loft conversion and introduce you to the Refresh South-west London philosophy. Our specialist team takes care of every aspect of your loft conversion from designing the initial concept right through construction, installation and finishing touches.
Why not call us today or enquire online to find out more and arrange an appointment?