A Loft Conversion involves building an additional room/s such as a bedroom and a bathroom in the loft space of your home. If you are looking to increase the living space in your home without eating into your garden with an extension, then a loft conversion is a cost-effective way to achieve this. A Rear Dormer loft conversion is the most common type of loft conversion that we carry out. This is because so many houses can incorporate them, including a terrace, detached and semi-detached. What Is A Rear Dormer Loft Conversion? Shown below in the diagram is the basic shape of a rear dormer.
They have square, vertical sides and normally have box-like, flat roof. We always mention a flat roof but in-fact they are built with a 1:50 fall to the side to prevent any standing water pooling on top. Rear dormer loft conversions can be built to all different shapes and sizes. From small box dormers that are discreet and stepped in, to large dormers that are built right to the back and sides of the property. The bigger the rear dormer, the more floor space and headroom is achieved on the inside.
What are rear mansards ?
Rear mansards are a great way of converting your loft, especially when certain planning restrictions prevent you from doing a rear dormer. Shown in this diagram is the basic shape of a rear mansard. They have square, vertical sides often built in either brickwork or tile-hung. They have a slopped facing side that slopes bottom in (normally angled inwards between 70˚ and 74˚) to soften the look.
We always mention that both dormers and mansards have flat roofs on their tops. But they are always built with a 1:50 fall to the side to prevent any standing water pooling on top of your flat roof.
Mansards can be built in all different shapes and sizes. From small mansard windows, right through to full-width mansards that are built right across the back of the property.
The bigger the mansard is built, the more floor space and headroom is achieved on the inside. The only difference with a mansard is that the slope across the face of the mansard will make the construction look softer from the outside. It will, however, sacrifice some head height compared to a dormer that is built vertical off the back wall.
Even though we always try and promote a dormer over a mansard, there are circumstances when a mansard is the only feasible option. Situations such as planning permissions, conservation areas, listed buildings and/or your local authority simply not liking dormer conversions in their council policy.
On the plus side, mansards can be built to look amazing and there are many options to choose from. Like the sides can be built in brickwork to match the existing property.
Mansards are often seen to be built up in brick sides to match the existing bricks on the parapet walls. But this can only be achieved through planning permission as you will be building on the party wall.
Other options include choosing to have small dormer windows, or French doors built within the face of the mansard. The options are endless and Mansards really suite the original properties of the Victorian era.
What Is A Hip to Gable?
A hip to gable loft conversion is where the side roof is removed off the side wall. This maximises the internal head height. So, what is a hipped Roof? A hipped roof has three slopped sides see below)
This type of roof is found on many end of terraced, semi-detached and detached properties. This type of conversion requires the builder to remove the hipped part of the roof at the early stages of the process, so the floor steels can be installed, and the gable can be erected.
The gable also allows the floor area within the loft to be extended to the total footprint area. Hip to gable loft conversions are more complicated to construct than a standard rear dormer or mansard.
Hip to gables are slightly more expensive and typically cost 20% more than a standard rear dormer conversion.
The most important factor for undertaking a hip to gable loft conversion is the huge change in the roofline. This will allow you to achieve a massive amount of additional floor space, maximising your loft conversion potential.
The exterior finish can either be tile hung with tiles or slates to match your existing roof, finished in block and painted render or finished in pebble dash if the side of the property is already pebble dashed. The final choice will be dependent on you and discussed on-site to which of these finishes will look most in keeping with your property.
Incorporated in most gable end walls will be a double glazed window to match the existing property style. This provides natural light to either the loft area or the new loft stairwell depending on the final design.