THE MOST DREADED QUESTION WE RECEIVE

"JOHN I WOULD LIKE A LOFT CONVERSION WITH A FULL WIDTH DORMER TO INCORPORATE A LARGE BEDROOM AND AN EN-SUITE, WE WOULD ALSO LIKE TO HAVE A DOUBLE STOREY SIDE EXTENSION TO ACHIEVE TWO BEDROOMS ON THE FIRST FLOOR. WE WOULD LIKE TO START IN 2 MONTHS TIME WITH ALL THE WORKS AND BUILD ALL AT THE SAME TIME CAN YOU HELP US?"

SIMPLE? NO NOT AT ALL - WE SPEND 50 MINUTES ON THE PHONE EXPLAINING TO CLIENTS IN NEED OF THIS DESIGN SO WE HAVE MADE THIS

We will try to explain to you to in simple terms why we cannot just design a loft and double storey together. The council do not make this easy for us too as you can get designs approved under different applications and the same design refused by making another application. 

LETS START WITH THE LOFT CONVERSION HIP TO GABLE DESIGN EXPLANATION

To get a hip to gable loft conversion with a full width rear dormer passed by the planners you will need to apply for a certificate of lawfulness. The planners will pass this design based on volumes, 40sqm3 for a terraced and 50sqm3 for a semi detached or a detached property. You will need to build the loft conversion and then apply for the double storey side extension and apply for planning permission. A house holders application for the double storey side will then be issued to the council based on your loft and gable wall profile built as completed meaning EXISTING. A site visit for the proposed double storey side extension will take place and it will be the judge of the planners to agree on the proposed development.

Build loft first

1st

DOUBLE STOREY

HIP TO GABLE

Under a certificate of lawfulness

Householders application

"Apply for double storey side and then build after loft is complete"

2nd

THE REASON WHY YOU NEED TO DO THIS IN THIS ORDER IS THAT IF YOU APPLY FOR PLANNING PERMISSION FOR A COMBINED LOFT AND DOUBLE STOREY AS LIKE THE PHOTO ABOVE THE PLANNERS WILL REFUSE THE COMBINED BASED ON THE SPD GUIDANCE POLICY

Hip to gable under a householders 

application will be refused based on impact of symmetry of neighboring property's and will effect street scene

(But will be acceptable under a certificate of lawfulness)

Double storey side extension would be acceptable however no future loft conversion such as a hip to gable be permitted, which in some cases loose value to the house

THE FINAL CONCLUSION TO GET THE BUILD DONE AT THE SAME TIME WOULD BE TO GET TWO SETS OF DRAWINGS IN PLACE

DESIGN ONE WILL BE

EXISTING PLANS DRAWN AS YOUR HOUSE IS NOW

PROPOSED PLANS DRAWN WITH LOFT CONVERSION

DESIGN TWO WILL BE

EXISTING PLANS DRAWN WITH THE LOFT BUILT

PROPOSED PLANS DRAWN WITH DOUBLE STOREY

Design one is the loft conversion, as you don't need planning permission for the loft conversion as it comes under permitted development, ignore the registration to the council for a certificate of lawfulness and submit the loft design directly to Building control. It is highly advisable to use any private building control company as the council have a bad reputation in this area. A typical loft conversion should take around 4 to 6 weeks to be completed on the build stage so this is all about timing. Submit the second double storey side extension design to the council under a householders application. This application should take no more than a week to be validated. A further 6 weeks is when to expect a visit from the case officer, that's when your builders have done a great job in completing your loft, gable wall and dormer just as the drawings are. The case officer will then make a judgement on the proposed double storey side extension being put forward, now if the design fits all planning policy there should be no reason to get an approval on the side extension on week 8 which is decision day. Your builders will be still working on site around that time anyway and then ll be able to start on the side extension with no major time breaks waiting for council responses. This is the normal practicable way but in a real world the council can make everyone's life hell in refusing the application without any warning setting back the build by another 8 - 10 weeks to get a new design over to them and start the whole process again waiting to get an approval.

I hope you understood this article and find it useful for your proposals we just want you to get the right results and not to make a mistake in doing the build the wrong way around as this could affect the sale to the next purchaser. Regards John.

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