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Lowering Ceilings to Achieve a Loft Conversion

Adequate head height is an important aspect of any loft conversion. In fact, there are minimum requirements for the ceiling height in a loft conversion, controlled via Building Regulations. As such, any loft ceiling must allow for a minimum head height of 2.2 metres.

If you’ve looked into a loft conversion and have discovered that there isn’t enough head height, did you know that there are various options available to create the height required? One of which is lowering the ceiling of the floor below to create more space in the loft.

Wondering about creating a loft conversion via the lowering ceiling option? Read on as we explore the subject in detail.

When is lowering the ceiling a good option for a loft conversion?

Lowering the ceiling of the floor below can be a good option for those times when adding additional height to the existing roof isn’t a possibility.

For example, if you live in a listed building, or within a conservation area, you may not be allowed to extend the height of the roof. However, lowering the ceiling of the floor below may be an option.

Speak to a specialist loft conversion company about the possibility of creating an acceptable loft ceiling in this way. There may still be certain paperwork and permissions required to carry out this work, but it could be an option.

How will lowering the ceiling option affect the existing rooms?

One thing that you will need to bear in mind is the obvious consequence of lowering the ceiling of the floor below. Naturally, you will lose some of the space in the existing rooms when creating your new loft ceiling.

However, this doesn’t always have to be a problem. In older buildings, such as Victorian homes, ceilings are already high, so you will not lose a huge amount of habitable space. Plus the lowering ceiling option will not make the room feel too cramped or enclosed.

It’s worth bearing in mind though that you may lose some of the room’s character.

Ultimately, you will need to weigh up whether creating a new loft conversion will outweigh the disadvantages of lowering the ceiling of your existing rooms. Gaining the extra habitable space in the loft is often well worth losing a small amount of space in the existing rooms.

How does lowering the loft ceiling work structurally?

Lowering the loft ceiling certainly takes some structural work. However, it’s not impossible.

As part of the process, a plate will be bolted to the wall using shield anchors or rawl bolts, and this will be what your new floor joists will hang from. You will also need a suitable tie between the roof structure and the new dwarf wall, which will stop the roof from spreading over time.

All of this work needs to be carried out by a loft conversion specialist; it’s not something to be undertaken as a DIY job. Lowering ceilings is a big undertaking, and making sure your home is structurally sound is of paramount importance, and is one of the many advantages of using a loft conversion specialist.

How disruptive is lowering the loft ceiling?

Lowering the loft ceiling is involves a fair amount of structural work, and there will be some dust and unavoidable disruption.

With this in mind, you may wish to move out of your home during the loft conversion process. Or if this is not an option, relocate to the downstairs part of your home.

It goes without saying that a loft conversion specialist will always try to minimise disruption to your home and your life as much as possible. But moving the existing loft ceiling is a big job, and so you should prepare yourself for the possibility of some dust, dirt and disruption during this process.

Wondering about lowering your existing loft ceiling? Talk to Bespoke Lofts to discuss your options.

If you feel that lowering your existing loft ceiling would be a way of creating the attic room of your dreams, then don’t let any doubts hold you back. As loft conversion specialists, Bespoke Lofts can talk you through all aspects of the build, as well as preparing you for what to expect.

Get in touch with Bespoke Lofts today to discuss what’s involved in creating your ultimate loft conversion.

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