Tag: dormer

Conversions, Extensions

Things To Know Before Getting A Dormer Extension

A dormer is a staple to a lot of people when it comes to a loft conversion however, it isn’t to everyone’s taste. Although, they play a really important role in creating more space on the inside, and add a little more character to the outside. 

What is a dormer? 

A dormer is a roofed structure, often containing a window, that projects vertically beyond the plane of a pitched roof. There are many various types and shapes of roof dormers. It can be large or small, have a pitched or flat roof depending on the planning permission.  

The function of a loft dormer is to create daylight and headroom in a sloping roof space. Once you have one installed the space below the pitched roof can be used. This means that the space can be transformed into a new bedroom, bathroom, or living area.  

Many people are not a fan of dormers because they don’t always look as good on the outside as they do on the inside. But if they are designed well, and by a good architect then they are a great contribution to the roof.  

Some of the different types are:  

  • Gable fronted – The most common type. It has a pitched roof of two sloping planes, supported by an outward face. 
  • Hip roof dormer – It has a roof composed of three sloping planes that rise from each side of the frame. 
  • Flat roof dormer – The roof of this is a single flat plane approximately horizontal.  
  • Shed dormer – This also has a flat plane roof, but it is sloped in the same direction as the principal roof.  
  • Lucarne – A dormer on the slope of a gothic spire, usually slender and gable fronted.  
Dormer Windows 101: All You Need to Know - Bob Vila

Will you need planning permission for a dormer extension? 

Planning permission is often not required however, whether or not you need planning permission will depend on these factors: 

  • The size 
  • What type of house you live in 
  • Where you live in the UK 

If you are within the permitted development rights, you can go ahead without planning permission.  

History of dormers –  

The word dormer comes from the middle French, meaning “sleeping room”, as dormers provided light and space to attic-level bedrooms. Dormer windows were popularised by French architect Francois Mansart (1598 – 1666), who used dormers extensively in the mansard roofs he designed for 17th century Paris. Although, the first dormer window appeared in residential roofs in 16th century Britain.  

17th-century French dormers

The Prices –  

Dormer window prices can vary massively per specialist. The average price is between £2250 – £3600. Whereas, a dormer loft conversion in the UK can cost anything upwards of £20,000 or around £500 – £600-meter square. And depending on what you would like to include the prices will increase. For example, the cost for a master bedroom with an ensuite will sit around £35,000 – £45,000. Dormers have an average return on investment value of 60 –70%.  

How long do they take to build? 

Determined by the overall size and roof work requirements, a dormer loft conversion may take four to six weeks to complete. A hip to gable end conversion may also take up to 6 weeks.  

Depending on the workmanship and degree of weathering the roof gets the average longevity of one is 25 years.  

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Conversions, Extensions, Loft Conversion

Things You Need To Know When Converting Your Bungalow

Converting your bungalow by extending upwards or adding another storey is a great way to add lots of space at an affordable price. If you have a larger property you may be able to extend the back and the side of the property.

Bungalow Loft Conversion –

You can extend upward. There are four main types of loft conversions that can be suited for bungalows. They are a dormer loft conversion, a hip to gable conversion, a Velux conversion, or a mansard loft conversion. Before you decide on what conversion you like you should get advice on the best type of conversion for your bungalow, depending on its existing structure.

Most bungalow loft conversions don’t require planning permission and it comes under permitted development. As long as they meet some key conditions:

  • Firtsly, if your bungalow is in a conservation area or an area of outstanding natural beauty then you will need to apply for planning permission.
  • Secondly, you’re not allowed to raise the height of the roof
  • On the main elevation facing the highway, you’re not allowed to construct dormers or anything that projects out of the roof.
  • No balconies or raised platforms are permitted
  • Finally, materials must be similar in appearance to the existing bungalow

One of the big attractions of converting a bungalow loft is that it is usually a lot cheaper than a conversion in a regular home. A simple conversion would likely cost around £20,000 to £25,000 for a standard bedroom. Whereas, if you want to add dormer windows and an En suite the prices could be around £40,00. The most a loft conversion could cost with everything included could be around £65,000.

A typical bungalow loft conversion can take about 6 to 8 weeks. Although if you have to apply for planning permission you would need to add a couple of months to the timescale.

Bungalow Extension –

You do not need planning permission for an extension if you build within your permitted development rights. Without planning permission, you can build up to 6 meters or 8 depending on if your house is detached. The average single-storey bungalow extension cost is around £1875 per meter square.

Homeowners in the UK could add up to £100,000 to the value of their homes by converting their property.

Bungalow Conversion

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Loft Conversion

How To Create A Loft Conversion On A Budget

Really want to add more living space to your home? Here’s how you can achieve a loft conversion on a budget.  

What Is A Loft Conversion?  

A loft conversion is the process of transforming an empty attic space into a functional room. And these are usually used as a bedroom, office space, gym, or storage space. 

Will You Need Planning Permission? 

So, most conversions do not require a planning permit, this is good because it will help save money on getting the permission. However, you are required to obtain permission if you alter the roof space in any way. If the head height of the roof is above 2.2 m you should be okay. But the best way to find out if you need permission is to check with the local council or planning officer. It is also good to check because if you go ahead without permission and you end up needing it, they can fine you. And that’s not what you want when trying to stay within a budget. 

Another way you can save some money is by not using an architect and doing the majority of the stuff DIY. There is no rule saying you need to have one, but it is highly recommended that you use architectural services when it comes to your project.  

It is a lot cheaper and straightforward to do a loft conversion compared to an extension. So, it is perfect for people who do not have much time and are on a budget. A dormer conversion is the cheapest type of loft conversion.  flat and shed roof dormers have simpler styles and reduce the cost.   

What Is A Dormer? 

A dormer loft conversion is when a box-shaped structure is added onto a pitched-shaped roof. Creating walls that sit at a 90-degree angle to the floor. This expands not only the headspace but the floor space as well.  

Dormer loft conversion, Newport - Signature: Sean Horler
A Dormer Loft Conversion

On average it can take up to 8 weeks or as little as 4 weeks, with certain styles less complex than others.  

Not everything about the conversion has to be professionally done. The interior finish can be your project. You can paint, wallpaper, hang curtains, fit the carpets. Anything that you do yourself is cutting costs.  

If you are including an En-suite in the loft hiring a plumber is an extra cost. Try positioning the bathroom right above the plumbing below, or near it. It saves a lot of work.  

If you are on a budget smaller loft conversions can benefit from the more natural light coming in. It is also good to use natural, lighter colours when decorating because it helps give the illusion of spaciousness.  

To be able to access the loft you would need a staircase to enter. A straight staircase is the most common style and affordable to build. The highest part of the loft, in line with the roof ridge, is an ideal location for the stairs.  

Pricing Of A Loft Conversion –  

There are many types of loft conversions which means the prices can differ. For a deluxe conversion expect to pay anywhere between £20,000 and £27,000. Whereas, the cost of a basic conversion could be somewhere between £9,800 and £12,500.   

For a DIY conversion the prices are a bit different:  

  • Price range – £9,400 – £48,000 
  • Average price – £29,100 
  • Cheap price – £9,400 

Although you might have done this project on a budget, a loft conversion can increase the house’s value by as much as 20%.  

Loft conversions - beginner's guide - Property Price Advice
Loft Conversion

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