When it comes to home extensions, the choices are ample. However, one variety that gained a lot of impetus in the last couple of years is roof or loft conversion. You can easily convert the space over your house into a more functional area with loft renovation projects. Whether you need an extra bathroom, bedroom or cooking space, this is the perfect thing to opt for. What’s more, if you have overnight guests and you’re running short of space in your house, this’ll certainly be beneficial for you and your family members. Whether you prefer a traditional look or a modern appearance, a good property constructor should help you meet the desired look.
Deciding to get work done in your home is a scary prospect and you will feel bombarded with questions from your potential builder about what you want and what the design should be. However, during these discussions it is very easy to forget about what you should be asking your builder – either at the quote stage or during construction. When it comes to a loft conversion, you may think that the process will be simple, but really – there are any number of things which you will need confirmation of, many of which you may not have thought of.
You should confirm exactly how much your builder needs in advance, when stage payments will be made and the amount you can hold back at the end while snags are cleared up. Try to get this payment schedule in writing. You should also ask them to make sure they get any significant payment changes in writing. You may be able to set a limit after which permission must be sought before changes to the payments or costs are made.
Any competent loft building company will be able to give you a good estimate of how long your project should take. It is true that additional problems may crop up once building is underway, but they should keep you informed along the way. Ask your builder to include this estimate of time in your contract, so you can hold them to it if they appear to be taking too long.
When will building control arrive?
If at all possible, you should try to be home when the building control officer arrives to inspect the insulation, the stairs and the floors. This stage is vitally important and needs to be signed off before you can use the loft and especially before you sell your home. Being at home when the building control officer is there means that you have the peace of mind of knowing exactly what was said and what the builder has or has not done.
Who will be on site?
You have the right (and it is very sensible) to know who will be on site during the build. If you are expecting it to be the builder who did the quote you may be disappointed. He may sub out the work or hire people who you don’t trust. You should also know how many people will be in your home and when. You may at times feel as though there are a huge number of strangers entering your home at will and you need to have some control over this.
Is he insured?
You must ask your builder to provide evidence of their liability insurance. This will cover any damage to your home during the build process and for any accidents which might happen. It is essential that you find out about this as your builder may not be able to pay if, for example, they did structural damage to your home or started a fire.
Loft conversions are a fantastic way to add space and value to a home. They can be used for bedrooms, play rooms, entertainment rooms or as office space and transform small houses in to family homes. They are cost effective versus conservatories for added space and many buyers have come to expect loft space as part of a sale nowadays.
If you are thinking about getting one then good for you. They really are fantastic. But how do you choose a reliable company to carry out all of the work? By following these 5 simple steps of course
1. Do you really want a conversion?
They have the potential to dramatically change the layout of a home. Before taking the plunge in to converting always talk to trusted friends and relatives about it, to get a good all round opinion on the way forward.
2. Did you answer yes above? Now you need to do your research
After deciding you definitely want a loft conversion carry out research in to potential companies. The best way to do this – like many things in 2013 – is through the internet on Google, Bing and Yahoo. Type – loft conversion your location in to the search field to draw a list of relevant companies who provide the services that you are after.
3. Look for portfolios and images of work on selected company websites
Once you have rounded up a number of good looking loft companies try to find examples of past work carried out. This way you can assess the quality of work also read testimonials from clients. If you are after a specific look with your loft conversion this is a good way of finding out whether they will be able to meet specification.
4. Arrange a home visit
In order to get a solid quote for your loft conversion you need to arrange a home visit. The best way of doing this is to call the loft conversion companies that you like. The best companies will visit your home free of charge and also provide a free estimate of cost. If you ring a few companies, you can compare prices and also face to face professionalism.
5. Decide on a company
By now you will have already done the most vital thing, you will not have put all of your eggs in one basket. You should now have a good idea of the cost of your loft conversion and the time scale it will take. From this, draw up the cons and pros of each home visit and decide on a company. When doing so, also take in to account the research initially carried out and check for happy testimonials from clients.
6. Work begins
When you have decided on a company you simply need only to ring them and work will begin on a specified time frame. This will give you chance to arrange any external living accommodation needed for the duration and give the loft creation company chance to fully survey your property.
In general lofts can take up to a month to complete however many companies complete sooner. Be sure to request a maximum time frame of completion from your chosen company to fall back on if things take longer than usual. This way, you shouldn’t be charged for extra labour.