How much does a loft conversion cost?

Price guide

£30,000 - £70,000

low

£30,000

median

£45,000

high

£70,000

Low, median and high bar chart distribuiton

Is your empty attic collecting dust and inspiring ideas? Or have you seen a neighbour convert a loft into a luxe living space? It’s time for some lofty ambitions. 

Loft conversions can be a great way to create space and increase the value of your home. But how much does it cost for a loft conversion? Naturally, it depends on the type of conversion you want. In general, the average cost of loft conversion is between £45,000 - £70,000 (or £30,000 if you just need the structure built, and you can DIY the rest). Read on for our research into loft conversion costs so that you can make the best choice.

Things to consider before your loft conversion

Looking for a sun-filled space at the top of your home? Loft conversions can be a great way to increase living space or create your dream master bedroom. If you’re considering a conversion, there are a few things to consider before you hire a residential architect.

What kind of property do you have?

Your home dictates which conversion you can have. A terraced house loft conversion cost might be quite high. In contrast, basic loft conversion costs or small loft conversion costs might be more conservative. Lofts are a versatile structure and can suit a lot of styles, but there are usually limits. Consider your home’s structure, along with the neighbouring buildings, before you get a quote. 

Is your family growing?

Perhaps you bought your home for a smaller family, and the number of people in your household is growing. The choice between extending the house and selling your home is a difficult one. For those who love where they live and feel daunted by moving, a loft conversion can be a way to save some space without leaving the place you love.

Is your loft suited to conversion?

We have to say it: not every loft can be a convert. There are some things to think about before you approach a builder or interior architect. As a general guide, you can scope out similar properties in your area, seeing what kind of loft conversions they have done. You might also consider:

  1. Roof height, pitch and space: to convert a loft, you’ll need at least 2.2m, but ideally, it would be a minimum of 2.2m to 2.4m.
  2. Roof structure: traditional rafters are generally more suitable than a modern trussed roof. Rafters mean more hollow space to work with, whereas a trussed roof will need extra reinforcements.
  3. Other problematic features: chimneys, plumbing, and water tanks might cause issues when doing a conversion.

Benefits of loft conversion

A loft conversion has a lot of benefits, but the main one is extra space. According to a nationwide study, adding an extra double bedroom via a loft conversion increased the value of a three-bedroom home by 22%. Whether adding a spare sun-filled bedroom or providing top-floor living options, loft conversions are a great way to make a little more space. You can also enjoy:

  • Creating a great room with a view
  • Increasing the value of your property and overall floor space
  • Using dead space for a light-filled living area
  • Flexibility in choosing the right style for you
  • A little freedom - you rarely need planning permissions for this work.

If you’re keen on a lush loft room of your own, put up a task on our platform. Be it a bungalow conversion or a loft conversion with ensuite, cost estimates can be provided to you by local loft conversion specialists.

Types of loft conversions

The type of loft conversion you choose will always be the biggest influence on price. Your choice will depend on:

  • The type of property you want to convert
  • Your budget 
  • If you wish to apply for planning permissions

Average cost

Average time (weeks)

Dormer loft conversion cost

£45,000

10-12

Hip-to-gable loft conversion cost

£55,000

10-12

Bungalow loft conversion cost

£75,000

10-12

Velux loft conversion cost

£27,500

10-12

Modular loft conversion cost

£50,000

2-3

Mansard loft conversion cost

£57,500

8-10

Shell loft conversion cost

£30,000

8-10


Dormer loft conversion

The most popular type of conversion in the UK, a dormer loft is a box-shaped structure added to a pitched roof, usually at the back of a property. Your average dormer has walls at 90-degree angles to the floor. With this style, you can enjoy more head height and overall floor area. In general, this type of work does not require planning permission.

Hip-to-gable loft conversion

A hip-to-gable (or raised gable) conversion alters the shape of your existing roof structure to expand extra space. Typically, hip-to-gable conversions are used on semi-detached houses with a roof that has three sloping sides. When converting, the sloping side gets lifted, replacing the sloping roof with a vertical wall that goes as high as the ridge. Some people do a double hip-to-gable, so two sides of the sloping roof are lifted. Who doesn’t love a little symmetry?

Bungalow loft conversion

Bungalows are tiny free-standing houses or cottages. This makes them great for loft conversions, giving extra space for bedrooms and living spaces. The size of the loft is more significant in the area for bungalow conversions, so they’re a little pricier.

Velux loft conversion

Velux conversions don’t require changing the roof structure. Home improvement experts simply install Velux windows into the rafters and get your inside roof space fitted out. So, if your house already has ample loft space, this is the best choice for you. Moreover, Velux are also the cheapest and easiest conversions to do!

Modular loft conversion

Modular lofts are prefabricated off site, saving a lot of time and effort on installation. Once your modular loft is made, it’ll get delivered to your house and attached to your roof space. It’s a relatively quick and easy process. But keep in mind you might need a permit from your local authority to block your street off on the delivery day, and stormy weather can affect installation.

Mansard loft conversion

If you’re interested in maximising available space, you’ll want a Mansard loft conversion. Generally built on the rear of a property as an extension, Mansards have a flat roof and a 72-degree sloping wall. Choosing between a Mansard or a dormer loft conversion project usually comes down to aesthetics. Still, it’s important to note: they generally require roof alterations, so you’ll probably need to follow building regulations.

Shell loft conversion

Shell conversions are an excellent option for DIY enthusiasts. A shell conversion is pretty simple: you can use any of the above conversions without any interior design. You just get the structural changes – that is, the “shell” – and the rest is up to you! 

Breakdown of loft conversion costs

When it comes to a loft conversion, there are different components to consider. Most quotes will give you a loft conversion cost per m2, so we’ve created a cost breakdown based on a 30m2 conversion. You can use this to help you decide the right kind of conversion for you or whether you want to opt for a shell or DIY conversion. For a more specific cost estimate, try a cost of loft conversion calculator. 

Job

Average cost

Project management

£2,500 - £8,500

Scaffolding (excludes temporary roof)

£3,500

Staircase (not custom)

£1,500

Internal preparation

£3,000

Alterations to roof structure

£3,500

Steelwork to support structural changes

£4,500

Roof coverings

£7,500

Electrics and plumbing

£2,500

Joinery (excludes staircase)

£4,000

Plastering

£2,500

Decoration

£1,500

Total

£36,500 – £42,500


Cost of labour

Your labour costs will change depending on the tradesperson being used. As a rough idea:

  • Builders, tilers, plasterers and decorators: £20-£35 per hour
  • Plumbers and electricians: £35-£50 per hour

What should my loft conversion quote include?

Before you agree to a price, be sure you know what is included. Choosing the right contractor is a big decision when it comes to house renovation. To support your research, make a list of things to check with a contractor when getting a quote. Remember to ask about:

  1. Labour costs – for them and their tradespeople
  2. Project management cost – this varies depending on the type of conversion and between different contractors.
  3. Supply costs: windows, flooring, insulation, stairs, general building materials
  4. Any additional costs, such as if they need an architect
  5. Planning permit costs (if needed)
  6. Paint/clad/render house exterior costs
  7. Any additional work, such as roof repairs

Ready to get started on expanding your dream home? Put up a task now and get a quote in minutes.

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FAQs

Do I need planning permission for a loft conversion?

There’s a good chance your loft conversion counts as a ‘Permitted Development’. Exceptions include Mansard conversions and if you are adding more than 40m2 for terraces or 50m2 for detached houses. Other things that will need permissions are having a balcony, veranda or raised platform and if it goes higher than the highest part of the roof and overhangs the outer face of the wall of the original building. Also, you might need a Party Wall Agreement if you live in a terraced or semi-detached house.

What’s the difference between loft conversion and loft extension?

A loft conversion is generally cheaper, more straightforward, and covers anything from turning the attic into a bedroom to raising the roof to the height of the ridge (such as a dormer). An extension makes the house larger. Whereas a conversion typically adds a little, an extension adds a whole living space.

How much value will a loft conversion bring to my home?

It depends on a variety of factors, and you will need to evaluate your situation. Do your research focusing on nearby properties with similar floor space. Once you’ve got some figures, compare this with the value of your home. Then, with a bit of arithmetic, you can work out if a loft conversion for a 2 bedroom and bathroom costs more but adds value or if you might be better off moving to a bigger house instead.