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THE LOWDOWN ON LOFT CONVERSIONS

With the hassle and cost of moving to a new house (coupled with the uncertainty we are currently living in), many families opt for trying to find more space within their existing home. Converting the loft or attic into a new living space can be a relatively cost effective and easy way to add extra rooms to your property.

An article published January 2016 by Westpac Bank NZ estimates that for every dollar spent adding an extra bedroom the pay back is double on your investment. So, if you spend $50,000 on an extra bedroom your property price could go up by $100,000.

What to consider??

1. Costs


· The main factor to consider, as with any renovation, is the cost

· The costs of converting your loft space vary depending on the accessibility and size of the space you are looking to convert – Take a look at the below points to consider what you need to factor in

2. Structure


· Where there is a large loft space, with good headroom and existing structural support, your loft conversion will be relatively straightforward and easy to cost up.

· Things can get more difficult if the roof space is shallow, as a lower pitched roof often means low headroom and, in some cases, the whole roof space may need to be lifted. It is at this point that you may wish to consider the impact on the budget with pursuing this design.

3. Additional building works


· Whether you need to replace some or all of the roofing to accommodate the works

· How the stairway into the loft will be positioned

· Changes to the floor level plan to allow for the stairs

4. Lighting


· Roof spaces are always dark and enclosed so consideration needs to be given to how you can create enough natural light in your new living space.

· Skylight windows are a popular and cost-effective choice in loft conversions and can produce enough natural light for the room.

· Adding a larger window or a door at the gable end of the house is also a good option to maximise the feeling of light and space.

5. Consenting


· Before you start you will need to gain Building Consent for the project, and all building work will need to be compliant with the NZ Building Code.

· Although it is not likely with a straightforward loft conversion, for larger projects, that require external extension work to the property, you may also need to obtain a Resource Consent

Converting the loft is often a cheaper alternative to building an extension or basement conversion due to there being no requirement for groundworks (because most of the work can be done within your current footprint and frame). You can also enjoy the benefits of building up and not out by not encroaching on your garden and outdoor area.

If you’re considering whether a loft conversion may be the right decision for you, please get in touch and we can help you work through it all.




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