How to Increase Space in Your Home Through Your Roof

With worldwide property prices increasing every year, the demand for more space usually means having to sell your home and buy a bigger one.

The cost of buying and selling homes in most cities is exorbitant and not something that is done lightly but when more space or another room is required, people are left with little choice, or so they think.

Most people don't realise that almost 30% of their home's space is left unused in their roof.

If you have a roof pitch over around 30 degrees or 7:12 (in roofer terms), then it's likely that there is sufficient height in the attic space to create another room.

According to most building codes around the western world, you will need minimum head space in the attic of at least 2-2.4m to create a habitable room. This means that you will need a decent roof pitch to allow for a new staircase, added insulation and reinforced floors to handle the extra weight.

If you would compare the other options of getting another room such as moving house or building home extension, then doing a loft conversion will not only be a lot cheaper but far simpler with less disruption to your daily life. Most loft conversions are done mainly on the outside of the roof (using scaffolding) or up in the roof cavity which means you can go about your daily life without being interrupted.

Think about a new double bedroom or a master suite complete with bathroom or a new home office or even a studio/multi play area for the kids. It can be a reality and whilst there are some local government regulations to comply with, it is not as rigorous as doing a full home extension.

According to some studies, a new loft conversion can add up to 20% extra value in your home at a fraction of the cost.

Aside from height requirements, some of the things that need to be considered in doing a loft conversion include electrical wiring, plumbing, insulation, the type of room required and of course the staircase. It usually takes around 2-4 months to complete a full conversion after approval from your local council.

If you don't have the roof pitch, there are other alternatives to creating a new loft. You may wish to consider altering the roof line or modifying the roof to create more head height. Some of the most popular ways of increasing height in the roof is through a dormer window conversion. This is a box -like structure that sits on your existing roof to give you additional head space. If you have a hip roof style, you can always do a hip to gable roof conversion that also allows you more space. Flat roofs can be recreated with a mansard loft conversion and there are conversions that use a mixture of different roofs - combining a rear dormer window with a hip to gable for instance.

So you think you don't have the funds or the will to move house to have more room, maybe have a look above your head first and you might be surprised.

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