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Loft Conversions Can Boost the Value of Your Home by a Fifth

Tue 22 Apr 2014

A recent study has found that homeowners could potentially boost the value of their home by up to 21% just by adding a loft conversion. Nationwide Building Society found that an additional attic room could add £37,000 to the value of a property, in comparison to adding an extra bedroom, which would boost the value by £20,000.

The average house now costs £178,124, meaning that if the average homeowner were to add a loft conversion they could re-sell their home for a cost of around £215,000. Boosting floor space in a property by approximately 10% will also add around £8,900 to its value – similar to that of an extra bathroom.

There are 5 main steps you need to consider when deciding to begin a loft conversion:

Budget

Loft conversions aren’t cheap, the average one will set you back between £20k and £30k, so before you get started make sure you know how much yours is going to cost. It can often be complicated when working out how much a loft conversion will cost, but make sure you leave a cushion in your budget for any extra-unseen circumstances.

Decide whether you will be undertaking the project yourself or whether you are going to be hiring a professional. Get a quote for materials and service if you will be hiring a contractor, and don’t forget to budget for paint, carpet, furniture and anything else you want to put in the loft conversion once it is finished.

Suitability

It is all very well deciding to convert your loft, but there is a chance you may not actually be able to. First check that there is enough height in the loft to be able to stand up in – if not, it won’t make a very good room.

You will need at least 2.2m of height for a comfortable room, as the roof will already slope in places and you will need to be able to stand up at some point. Think about the existing roof truss timbers and whether they will be in the way when you walk through the room. If they block the main space, the conversion may not be possible.

Permission

Before starting your loft conversion you will need to apple for planning consent and building control approval from your local authority. These will both cost a small amount but are necessary for you to make any changes.

The majority of loft conversions are filed under “permitted development”, meaning there is no long-winded application process to get planning and building permission.

Stairs

There is no point having a loft conversion if there are no stairs to enter it from. It is easy to think about the loft itself, without considering where the stairs will be located. Think about where the stairs will start on your landing and the impact they will have on the rest of the property.

There is no point having stairs that affect the rest of your property layout and end up reducing the size of an existing bedroom. You will also need to make sure that there is a height of 2.0m minimum where the stairs enter the loft to comply with building regulations.

Space

If you are going to be converting your loft, then make sure you use the space you have to your advantage. The very sloped sides of the loft may have no use as part of a bedroom, but they would be great to use as storage.

Try not to have the stairs opening up into the middle of the conversion, as it will give you less space in the room itself, meaning it would be harder to lay out furniture and be able to easily walk around a bed.

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