What is the process and cost of raising a roof
Why do people opt to raise the roof on their home?
The most common reason to raise the roof on a property is to create more space in the roof void, usually to increase standing height. This then provides a usable area to convert into accommodation. The common name for this process is a roof lift loft conversion or just a roof lift.
Some lofts or attics have sufficient headroom towards the apex of the roof but may slope steeply at the sides; this problem can be managed by using dormer windows or what is called a mansard loft conversion. However, some roofs don’t even have enough head height at the centre of the pitch and the only way to create this is to remove the old roof and install a new one.
What is the process involved in raising a roof?
In simple terms, the old roof is removed and a new higher roof lifted on to the property by a crane. The new roof is usually engineered off-site ready to be installed in its entirety when the old roof has been removed. As well as gaining height, the new roof is specifically designed to create usable living space so, for example, it will not have internal cross beams which can get in the way.
A competent and professional roofing company can swap your old roof for a new one in as little as a couple of days. Here is the process:-
- The old roof is stripped off back to the bare timbers so all the tiles, underfelt and battens are taken off and then the remaining frame is covered with a waterproof top just in case of weather issues
- On Day Two, the new roof is lifted into position by a crane. This does depend on the access to the site and is not workable for every property. The new roof is ready for tiling which will start the following day
- Whilst the external roof is covered and finished, work starts internally to create the new accommodation. This is often pretty quick as the new roof void has been specifically designed ready for the extra rooms
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What are the advantages of a roof lift?
- A roof lift can create living space in roof voids where even dormer windows or a mansard loft conversion would not be feasible
- Even in lofts with decent standing headroom, there can still be obstructive crossbeams which can challenge the interior fitting of the space. These will be absent in a new roof leaving a clear open area ready for conversion
- A roof lift can create standing height across the whole roof space rather than just the central point so is also an option worth considering for larger attics and lofts which may have steep sloping pitches – it can be a good alternative to inserting dormer windows or a mansard loft conversion and provide more options for fitting out the internal accommodation
- A roof lift will maximise the available floor space as well as solving the height problem- a good roof lift can double the floor space
- A roof lift loft conversion can create additional accommodation without encroaching on the valuable garden area which is the drawback of an extension or conservatory
- The house benefits from a brand new roof, new frame, new felting and new tiles or slates plus any additional design features the homeowner wants to install like roof lights or Velux windows. You can also add dormer windows to create even more light and airflow
What accommodation choices are there in the new space?
There are so many different things you can use this new space for, here are just a few ideas:-
- A studio or homeworking space, something of a necessity nowadays
- A master bedroom with ensuite
- Family cinema room allowing you to convert a reception room downstairs into something else like a home office or study
- Two new bedrooms for the kids leaving space on the floor below to add another bathroom or create an ensuite
- A granny annexe
- Home gym
- A space for a new home business idea
How much will it cost to raise the roof on my home?
A roof lift is going to be more expensive than a straightforward loft conversion clearly but by engineering the roof off-site, there are cost savings to be against lengthy conversion costs within the current roof space so it might not be as expensive as you think.
Much of the possible variation in cost will depend on the fittings you intend for your new accommodation. If you are talking bathrooms or kitchens then it is easy to add a figure of £10,000 to £20,000; two new bedrooms would be much less expensive.
The new roof will cost between £10,000 and £20,000 depending on its size, the choice of roofing material and any other features like dormer windows or roof lights. Add to this the average cost of a loft conversion which can be anywhere between £10,000 and £40,000 depending on what you do with the space and so a good working average in total would be between £30,000 and £40,0000.
Will a roof lift increase the value of my home?
A roof lift significantly increases the value of a property, some property experts estimate by around 25%, because not only do you create a fabulous loft space with a maximum choice of accommodation options but your house also has a brand new roof so it is a winner on both fronts.
Will I need planning permission for a roof lift?
Planning permission will be required because you are changing the overall height and pitch of the roof and this does not fall within the catch-all of ‘permitted development’. There may be restrictions on the type of roofing material you are allowed to use particularly if you have a period or listed property and also the size and degree of projection of dormer windows if you choose to have them.
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