Bungalow Loft Conversion
Don’t think because you live in a bungalow that you don’t have the space for a loft conversion. Most bungalows have traditional pitched roofs and this, combined with the large floor plan, this means that up to 40% of the available area is unused giving you a fantastic space available in the attic to convert. Often these properties are located on large plots, thereby also allowing for extensions into the garden.
A loft conversion specialist can talk you through all of the options for gaining head height, so even bungalows with a shallower pitch can be easily converted into a chalet bungalow, integrating the unused loft space into the fabric of the property to create useable living space.
The most cost-effective loft conversion for a bungalow is to install roof light windows, such as Velux, which can be installed to the front and/or rear elevation without altering your roofline and work best when there is plenty of headroom, enabling you to make use of all the available floor space. A roof light loft conversion requires significantly less construction work than other options and with this simple type of conversion, you do not normally need planning permission, although there are some exceptions. These windows allow for a large amount of light, making your loft conversion feel spacious and airy.
What are the challenges?
The steep roof pitch of bungalows built before 1960 means that it is unlikely that you’ll need a dormer window. As many of these bungalows were built with large open loft spaces and load bearing walls, they are ideal for loft conversions since they are capable of supporting new loft rooms.
Many of those bungalows built later, however, were not designed with the potential of supporting rooms in the loft, so it is advisable to speak with a loft conversion specialist before making any decisions, in case you need to factor in structural work or underpinning.
What about stairs?
Once you’ve decided to add an extra floor to your bungalow, all you need is a staircase to be able to access it. The question for you and your architect is understanding both the functionality and look and feel that you’re after, along with how to include a flight of stairs with only losing a minimum of floor space.
It’s best to check with your local authority as currently building regulations are more relaxed for bungalow conversion staircases, but to satisfy building regulations, escape windows should be added to the new loft rooms since adding a ‘fire protected staircase’ in a bungalow is not always possible.
Converting your loft into a Beautiful Living Space
There is no doubt that it’s easier to extend than to move. A successful loft conversion is a definite asset to your home; adding space upstairs providing an extra bedroom, playroom, living room or home office and freeing up room downstairs to be more flexible with the layout of your home.
With careful design and expert construction your loft conversion will help increase the value, as well as square footage to your home. If you want to make sure it’s done right, hire a professional to establish your requirements and make the best possible use of the available space and ensure you have a loft conversion that stands the test of time and adds value to your property.