Frequently Asked Questions

A velux conversion is one that uses roof light windows installed into the pitch of the roof to give light. There is no visible extension of the loft beyond the existing roof line therefore planning permission is not required.

A dormer window is the exterior part of the conversion that is built at the rear of the roof to provide floor and living space and is generally a square section construction to maximise the overall living area.

This is when we extend the ridge line of a hip-end roof to make it into a gable-end roof. This gives you a much larger loft area. A hip to gable extends the ridge line from the existing hips to overall the flank wall of the house. It will effectively add on the required space to enable the staircase and the shower-room to be built and also increase the standing space available in the loft.

The staircases in almost all conversions are positioned above the existing staircase of the house. They start at the side of the bedroom door and climb upwards along the flank wall of the house and land at the top level with the new loft floor. This means that no extra space is needed or taken away from the first floor living area to accommodate the stairs into the loft.

For most loft conversions, planning permission is not required. This is because they generally fall under Permitted Development Rights. However, you will need to get planning permission if your loft conversion does not meet the government’s guidelines. Building regulations are always required for a loft conversion.

Yes, unless your property is detached.

Typically, a Velux and  dormer loft conversion on a terraced property will take five to six weeks  to complete and a Gable end and a dormer conversion on a semi-detached property will take six to seven weeks to complete. These timings are an accurate guideline as we have a team of full time tradesmen that convert the loft and they have been with us for more than 10 years.  This means, barring exceptional weather conditions, we are confident of our agreed timescale with the customer

Yes, we work twelve months of the year. It’s a nice position to be in as our order books are always very good due to our high volume of customer recommendations. Especially in the winter months, Joseph James Loft Conversions build your loft to a system that makes sure that you the customer are never exposed to the weather at any time during the construction period. The summer months are no different.

Yes, we can apply and gain all relevant planning and building regulations on behalf of their customers. We use our own designer to produce the plans and he submits them and the applications for planning and building permission to the local authority for their approval. This is all included in the fixed price contract that we present to you.

The Local Authority/Building Control is involved from start to finish of the conversion, they first receive the plans submitted by the designer and check all the structural calculations through their own engineers dept. Once all have been confirmed with all the relevant building regulation specification and an approved set of plans is returned the work can commence. During the relevant stages of the project a Building Inspector will visit to inspect and ensure all structural work and building regulations are being implemented in the construction of your loft conversion. After the completion of the work a final inspection is carried out. Once this has been confirmed as meeting all the requirements, a completion certificate is sent to the homeowner confirming that the loft conversion they have had built on their home complies with the building regulations covering England and Wales.

Nearly all lofts or attics can be converted as long as they are not breaching planning or conservation guidelines. However, it depends also on the height of the ridge. If you were to stand in the centre of the roof and measure from the top of the existing ceiling joists to the top of the ridge board at the apex of the roof and you have a minimum of 2.2 metres, then the loft can be converted. 2.2m for a traditional roof, measure from the underside of the ridge member to the top of the ceiling joist. A truss roof will be 2.4m 

We have Employer’s Liability Insurance of £10,000,000 and individual Public Liability Insurance of £1,000,000. Both are available on request. We also offer a 10 year structural guarantee against our loft conversions and a 1 year free maintenance guarantee.

Fact 1 NOT all loft conversions require planning.
Fact 2 All loft conversions DO require Building Control approval.
Fact 3Loft conversions ADD to the value of the property.
Fact 4You DON’T need to move out of your property whilst having your loft converted.