Find answers to our most frequently asked questions here.
Most frequently asked questions
Do I need planning permission?
This depends on your location and type of property – all flats require planning, but if you live in a house that isn’t in a designated area, then permitted development is usually used and no planning is required. There are many other factors to take into account and one of our surveyors can advise further.
How much does a loft conversion cost?
Most cost between £30,000 and £50,000. This depends on the size and type – bigger and more complicated jobs take longer and therefore will cost more. See pricing information for further details.
What is a party wall agreement and do I need one for a loft conversion?
A party wall agreement (PWA) is required if you have a semi-detached or a terraced property and you are working within or near your neighbour’s boundary. We can advise when the surveyor visits.
How long does a loft conversion take?
Depending on the size and type, most loft conversions take around 12 weeks.
Does a loft conversion add value to a home?
Yes – it will add from 20% to 30% upwards depending on the size, design and type.
How much head height do you need for a loft conversion?
We can look at your loft – if you have a clear head height of 2m then a loft conversion may be possible. Our surveyor will need to assess this to confirm.
Are your quotes free?
Yes – a free no obligation quote and drawings worth £600 can be provided.
What areas do you cover?
We cover the whole of London and all home counties.
How long is my quote valid for?
When can you commence works?
We can start works from two weeks after agreeing a contract. If we need planning, it will take around ten weeks to start.
How long will it take to get plans?
If we are creating drawings, these can be turned around in two weeks.
How long will it take to get a quote?
For straightforward jobs, we can get a quote out within seven working days. For larger, more complicated works where we may have to outsource some pricing, it can take up to 14 working days.
What is permitted development?
This is where you can make some alterations without obtaining planning permission. If you already have permitted development, you won’t need planning permission for a loft conversion.
Will my loft conversion be a permitted development?
Probably, provided you don’t live in a flat or in a designated area like a conservation area. We’re more than happy to advise you further.
Do I have permitted development?
Some new build estates restrict development by withdrawing permitted development rights for a few years. Check on your deeds or check with your solicitor. If you’ve already extended your roof, you may need planning permission.
Can I have a loft conversion if my property is in a conservation area?
Check on your local planning site – the roads will be listed along with details of the conservation restrictions.
Can I have a loft conversion if my property is listed or in an Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty?
This will depend entirely on restrictions in your particular area. We can advise further.
Types of loft conversion
What type of loft conversion can I have at my home?
Our surveyor will advise you on the best way to create space within your budget.
There are no loft conversions on my road – can I have one?
Don’t worry – if you have good head height, you own the space, and you have permitted development rights, you can have a loft conversion.
My ridge height is very low and other builders have said a loft conversion not possible. Is that true?
Generally, you’ll need a 2m ridge height to convert a loft. We can usually find a solution, but you may need a budget of at least £50,000 for a low ridge loft conversion.
Do building regulations affect me?
Building regulations are relevant for all loft conversions. We organise a building control officer to attend, who completes three site visits and ensures the works are completed to current building regulations. A building regulation certificate will be provided once works are completed.
Do we need to change any lights on the first floor?
The electrician will check your consumer unit and the lights on the first floor to see if they comply.
About Touchstone Lofts
What insurance do you have?
We have a number of policies and insurances covering us and can show you these when the surveyor visits.
How long have you been trading?
Touchstone Lofts has been building lofts since 1989.
What guarantees do you offer?
We offer a ten-year guarantee.
Do you have a complaints policy?
Yes, this will be made available when you agree to a contract.
Can you guarantee quality?
Yes – we guarantee that the work we carry out will be of the highest quality. We ensure this by carefully monitoring each stage of the works and by providing a ten-year guarantee.
During the loft conversion
Do I need to move out?
No – it’s safe to carry on living inside the property. We work from the scaffolding before the stairs go in. Any disruption you experience will mainly come from noise.
What level of disruption should I expect?
- Disruption of scaffolding around the house
- Noise from the fixing of structures and cutting wood
- When stairs are fitted, there is a little more noise and dust – we clean up daily
- A skip will be placed in your driveway
- Materials are regularly delivered to site and may be stored on your driveway