When it comes to thinking about the concept or design of your new loft conversion an architect can prove to be a very wise investment - saving the homeowner plenty of time and an equal amount of stress.
Of course using an architect can be expensive but in the long run can save time and money.
There are many advantages to using an architect for your project but it is a mistake to think that his work revolves solely around design and drawing plans.
A completely qualified professional is a guru in many aspects of building design, law and construction and his role in your loft conversion project need not be limited to simply drawing plans.
A good architect or designer can fundamentally become your project chief, ensuring that the plans are followed, laws adhered too, materials delivered and building work carried out proficiently and to budget.
In short he is going to make your project proceed as smoothly and as swiftly as possible.
Loft conversions, depending on circumstances, can sometimes be extremely complicated projects but an architect will be able to guide his client through the maze of building regulations and planning standards as well as the technical details of the project.
This knowledge can be a tremendous benefit to the home-owner as the fear of employing 'cowboy' builders and having a unfinished or unsafe loft conversion is removed. And that is a gigantic plus point.
Architects who design loft conversions won't be inexpensive but the price of paying for his services can be recouped several times over by the peace of mind that you will have knowing a pro is overseeing your project and by the undeniable fact that there shouldn't be any unforeseen costs.
The builders will do their job, and the project will be finished on time and to specification.
A Few More Thoughts
Specialist architects can either be consulted independently before you begin converting the attic or your chosen builders will either have an in-house designer or one they can recommend.
Obviously loft conversions are major improvement for any home. As with all home improvement they have to be properly planned and the best way to do this is a good architect or designer.
There are many things that can be done with that unused loft space. It can be turned into an ensuite attic bedroom, a en-bathroom with shower, playroom for the children or a TV room. The loft conversion will enhance the value of the property, provided it is done properly.
To get the best possible conversion will involve making the best possible use of the loft space. This will take a lot of thought and discussion.
The next part of bringing those dreams to fruition will be to have the plans drawn up by the professionals – the architect. He or she will listen carefully to the client before drawing up those plans.
Computer technology enables plans to be shown in 3D, bringing the whole concept to life. If the architect provides this service it will give a good idea how the proposed loft conversion will look. This will enable the client to propose any changes he feels need to be made.
Most loft conversions do not require planning permission, but if they do, or if there is a possibility that permission will be needed, the architect may well be able to forward the plans to the local planning department. This will not only ensure the paperwork is properly completed, but also save the client time.
And, of course, as part of your building regulations application it would be wise to have the plans drawn up by specialist loft conversion architects to ensure approval is given by the councils building control officers.
Vermiculite Loft Insulation is an echo-friendly alternative to traditional insulation materials
The old loft water tank will need to be moved if the roof space is being converted into a habitable room
Structural calculations for loft conversions are of course hugely important to ensure safety and that the proposed plans meet building regulations