Mr. and Mrs. Hamilton recently approached me to seek professional advice on converting their existing attic in Belfast, with a growing family and a home they loved and didn't want to move away from the unused space in the attic was ideal space to extend into.
This semi-detached attic was quite small with just about enough headroom. With clever design and detailing it was however a viable option.
Here's the proposed new floor plan, providing a new Master Bedroom within the attic, Ensuite and a Laundry Room. Just what my Clients asked for.
The proposed Elevation shows the new dormer window providing full height ceilings in each room with windows at the top of the stairs and in the Master Bedroom.
It's crucial to provide full details to your builder ensuring that the construction meets Building Control Regulations. Here's an example of one of the details I produced and included in the Building Control Application.
For more information on Attic conversions here's a guide for homeowners:
A roof space conversion is an ideal method of extending your home. But even if you are fairly experienced in construction work, this is not a project to rush into without a great deal of thought.
Where such works are carried out without Building Control Approval it is likely that the future sale of your property will be jeopardised when solicitors acting on the purchaser’s behalf carry out conveyancing procedures.
Roof space conversions are generally considered to be a simple procedure; however this is not the case. They need to be designed by a professional fully aware of all Planning & Building Control Regulations.
The following points must be considered and catered for in roof space conversions by a professional:
The walls and roof of the roof space conversion are required not only to keep out the rain and effects of damp, but to also restrict the passage of heat to the outside. Consideration of insulation to these walls and roof will greatly help reduce heat loss and expensive heating bills.
Floors, certain walls and doors are required structurally to resist the spread of a fire (usually 30 minutes). Such provisions are essential to ensure that you, your family and building occupants can escape safely in the event of a fire or other emergency.
The provision of an automatic smoke or heat detection system is essential to give early warning of fire.
The new floor and room layout requires that you and your family have a safe and easy exit in the event of a fire. Careful consideration and design of this item is of critical importance
Also the provision of suitably designed and located escape windows is an important aspect of life safety in any roof space conversion.
The structural adequacy of the new floor has to be designed and checked to ensure it can safely support the new loads placed upon it without suffering collapse. The existing ceiling joists are usually not adequate!
Additional ventilation provision is essential to prevent unhealthy living conditions.
Condensation if not properly catered for, especially in areas where it cannot be seen can cause problems and lead to expensive remedial action. Roof construction types require careful consideration with regard to ventilation and vapour control provisions.
How can I help? With over 30 years experience in Architecture I can advise on the best approach for your situation, also helping to obtain the necessary statutory approvals.
Please feel free to contact me if you have any questions or considering converting your attic and thanks for taking the time to read my blog.