Dormer Lofts

The Pros and Cons of Dormer Lofts

With all the uncertainty surrounding property prices at the moment, there are many people who want to move to a larger home but do not want to take the risk of having to sell their existing home at a lower price. If you are one of these and you need an extra room, a dormer loft conversion could be the answer. These can be ideal because you are not having to increase the footprint of your house and use up part of your garden.

Not everyone understands what a dormer loft conversion is though, so here we will look at the pros and cons to help you decide if it could be the way forward for you.

What is a Dormer Loft Conversion?

First of all, let’s explain what a dormer loft conversion is. They are basically an extension to your roof, providing an extra room and additional headspace. An ordinary loft conversion can mean that the useable space is limited because of height restrictions, ventilation, and natural light. Dormer lofts get over these problems, but it is always best to use specialists to do the conversion for you. You can learn more about dormer lofts and the types that are available through the linked website; Loft Conversions Wales.

Who Needs Planning Permission?

If you want to build an extension to your home, you will need planning permission. However, with a dormer loft conversion, you are not increasing the ground area the property covers, and because of this, in most cases planning permission is not need. Generally, they fall under permitted development rights. There are times planning would be needed such as if:

  • The conversion will be higher than the existing roof
  • There will be a balcony or raised platform
  • The property is in an area where roof extensions are not permitted.

There are other criteria worth looking at, but if you are unsure, a call to the local council could be wise.

Are Dormer Lofts Cost-Effective?

The cost of dormer loft conversions compared to an extension providing the same floor space is much lower. They do cost more than a standard loft conversion, but the better use of your loft area is well worth it. It could be a new bedroom for one or two children or maybe a cinema room or a home office. Its uses will be a lot less limited because of the extra headroom and natural light, and things such as placement of the stairway into it will be simpler.

It has been estimated by one of the largest UK building societies that dormer lofts can add as much as 20% to the value of a home, and they should never cost that much to build. So yes, dormer lofts are cost-effective.

Do Dormer Lofts Take Longer Than a Standard Loft Conversion?

Dormer lofts need more structural changes than a standard loft conversion, so they will take a bit longer, but it will be worth it. The roof will need altering to accommodate the dormers, and the amount of alteration needed depends on the type of dormer you opt for. There are four main types of dormer:

  • Gable fronted dormer which is the most commonly used
  • Hipped roof dormer which gives more horizontal space than a gable, and more headspace than the shed dormer
  • A shed dormer is pitched at a shallower angle to the main roof
  • Flat roof dormer gives the maximum amount of internal space, head height, and natural light, but is not always the most pleasing to the eye externally.

Is a Dormer Loft Conversion Suitable for Your Home?

This is something you need to discuss with the experts to find out for sure. Have a chat with dormer loft specialists and explain to them exactly what you hope to gain from the roof extension. They will be able to let you know if what you are after is possible and give you prices so you will have the full picture of whether a dormer loft conversion is right for you and your family.

About Dylan Garton

Dylan Garton is a co-founder, video producer and editor for the Skill Builder social media platforms.

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