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How to know if you have enough head height for a loft conversion

Posted by NK Lofts Team on 28/11/2017

So, you’ve decided on a loft conversion? You’ll want it to be your new favourite space in the home. Somewhere cosy, comfortable and, importantly, safe. That means you must ensure your ceilings are high enough to meet building regulations. If you find that your ceilings come up short, don’t fret. There are many ways to raise them to meet safety standards.

Building regulations

The suitability of your loft for conversion depends on the available head height of the potential room. It’s an industry standard that the centre of the roof and a majority of the ceiling is at least 2.2 metres in height. If this is not the case for you, does that mean you can’t have a loft conversion? Of course not, you can still convert, but you may want to take the extra steps required to provide a comfortable head height.

Insulation thickness

You’ll be glad to know that if your head height is short by a couple of centimetres, you potentially have a simple solution on your hands. Slightly thinner insulation boards used in both the ceiling and the floor will give ample room. However, your insulation must also be thick enough to meet their own building regulations. You can’t sacrifice one for the other, as both head height and insulation thickness are important to building inspectors.

Raise the roof

Unfortunately, we don’t mean ‘have a fantastic party’. Literally raising the roof of a loft is an option. With the aid of professional roofers, you will be able to adjust the height of the room by altering the angle of the joists or by extending the top of the walls and gables. Because this will alter the aspect of your home considerably, you will require planning permission when raising the roof.

Take note, this is not a cost-effective option and prices can sky rocket, which will minimise your return on investment. If you have a disused garage, consider converting this instead.

Lower the ceilings of the rooms below

Specialists will be required for this option and it is highly disruptive to the homeowner. By lowering the ceilings of the rooms beneath your loft, you will lower the loft’s floor and create the needed head height. The ceilings will be completely removed and new shield anchors, rawlbolts and floor joists will be fitted.

In Summary

If your intended loft room is less than 2.2 metres at its highest point, you’ll need to get the advice of experts before moving ahead with building works. Otherwise, the conversion will not be up to standard and could potentially be dangerous. Always consult with a trusted loft conversion company with experience and excellent reviews.

NK Lofts carry out loft conversions for customers in Northampton, Milton Keynes, St Albans and the surrounding areas. Our experienced contractors are able to transform your unused attic space into a comfortable and livable room in as little as 5 weeks and are happy to provide a no obligation site survey, absolutely free. To arrange a free survey or get advice on your loft conversion, contact our friendly team today.