Considerations If You're Planning A Loft Conversion in West Lothian

It isn’t simply a case of deciding on a loft conversion and then getting in touch with the builders and getting it done. There are so many things that need to be taken into consideration. We know, because we build lofts for a living, and we know that there’s a lot to consider before going ahead.

Let’s take a look at some of the issues you may have to consider before embarking on a loft conversion in West Lothian.

Loft Conversion Weight

This is where you have to consider the structure of your house and the foundations, to see whether or not it can take the weight of a loft conversion. It will only take a little more weight, but all the same this is still something that requires consideration, but it’s worth checking first.

Depending on the type of loft conversion you’re having, you may have to invite a building officer round to check it too, as you may find that the house needs underpinning to help it support the weight of the loft. Naturally you’d have to consider the expense if you did need to add underpinning to the budget.

Stairs to Your Loft Conversion

You’ll need access to the loft and an escape route. The rules stipulate that a loft conversion must have a permanent staircase for it to be considered new room. They also need to be as wide as the steps in the rest of your house. You might alternatively consider a spiral staircase or perhaps a ladder. You’ll need to check head height so as to accommodate easy access and exit to the loft.

Head Clearance

What do you do if there’s not enough head height? If you have a sloping roof above the stairs then this could cause problems, and you’ll have to think of innovative ways of creating enough space for head height. You may even have to change the stair so they are on a different angle and this will take some space away from of the other rooms. There must be a minimum of 2m head clearance across each step.

Fire Door

You need a door at the bottom of your stairwell that complies with fire regulations. This will be your escape route should a fire break out. You will be expected to change all doors in the stairwell area to fire doors that comply with British Standards BS 476. Doors of this nature will be made from fire resistant materials. If the door also has an intumescent seal this is even better, because they’ll create a tight seal around the door by swelling to an enormous size.

Finally, here are some other factors to take into consideration before you go ahead and have your loft conversion:

  • Is the structural strength of the floor up to standard?

  • The stability of the entire structure including the roof must be checked.

  • Good sound insulation between the new loft conversion and the rooms downstairs.

Loft Conversions West Lothian

Get in touch with us here at JG Joiners & Builders should you have any more questions or would like a loft conversion consultation and quote.