If you’ve ever wondered, ‘how much does a loft conversion cost?’ then you must read on.
It’s been 2 years now since the loft conversion in our Victorian semi was completed. I have to admit, I still can’t believe it’s been that long; it still feels pretty unbelievable at times that we have this great space at the top of the house. A space that has completely changed how we live in our home, and gave us the change we needed just at the right time. It re-balanced the entire home, a change I wasn’t quite expecting, and even though it was an incredibly painful experience, I am so glad we did it.
Ever since I wrote this post HERE on our loft conversion reveal, and made the accompanying loft conversion tour video, one of the most frequent questions I get asked, is how much did it cost. Us Brits get a bit coy when talking about money but it was one of the hardest things to find out when I was researching the project, and so I thought this might help a few people, particularly at this time of year when we start to think of renovations and remodelling.
What to Consider When Evaluating Cost:
So I can only give you the costs associated with our attic conversion, and then you can adapt them to your own home and location.
I am based in the East Midlands in the UK so consider how location is always going to play a part in the cost. Demand in your area will affect the price too of course, particularly of your building company. My costs are lower than those in London.
The size of your home will determine cost too. I live in a 3 bed Victorian semi, over 100 years old and the loft space isn’t huge.
Finally, give some thought to the use of your converted attic space. What do you want to convert the loft to? We always knew we wanted another bedroom, a main bedroom in fact with en-suite, and guessed that the loft as it was wouldn’t be big enough to house our idea. So, the design needed a dormer which was always going to make it more expensive.
What We Did:
Before I tell you what everything cost, you need to understand what we actually did with our space, in detail. Then you can compare it to your plans, and it will help give the costs some context.
So we converted the room into a bedroom with an en suite. This meant removing the roof to build a dormer on the back of the house. We had new stairs installed from the first floor, and in order to get them in, we had to lose part of a bedroom on that floor. It meant knocking down a load bearing wall, and building a new one. We also tore down the ceiling on the first floor and rebuilt that to keep everything looking good.
We had extensive electrical work done, plus a new electric box so we could have the electric shower installed in the en-suite. The plumbing took some doing, and we needed to waste pipes outside. We installed a sliding door in the en-suite, new cupboards under the new stairs, and at the last minute, bought in bespoke wardrobes for the loft bedroom.
The build included decoration from tiling to painting to laying the wooden floor. We could have done a lot of this ourselves but wanted it all done quickly! The decoration was from the top of the house through to the ground floor hallway. (At one point the house flooded slightly when the roof was off so there was lots of painting to do).
Cost Breakdown: What you Need to Know:
Architect: The first cost will no doubt go to your architect who draws up your plans. Ours cost just over £1000 for the initial plans and then the second detailed drawings. We could have paid another £500 or so to have him manage the actual build but we decided to do this ourselves.
Building Regulations: In the UK you need to pay a fee (I think ours was around £400 to our local building regs people who will come out a few times and ensure the build is following the correct regulations, and then sign it off once complete.
Builders: This is obviously going to be your biggest cost. We had 5 estimates from 5 different builders based on our architect plans. They varied considerably from £25k through to £40k. We went for a builder who had done this kind of job before locally at £29k. His final bill was actually higher slightly, because of unforeseen issues, particularly around electrics.
Finishing Touches: Don’t underestimate this part of the budget. Read your detailed plans carefully, anything not mentioned in there won’t be included in your builder fee and you’ll be funding it from this budget instead. Think things like your toilet, shower, bed, wardrobes, carpet, paint and more. Our total bill was around £42k, so we spent over £10k in this area. (It was going well until we decided we had to buy in bespoke wardrobes for just over £3k).
So the £42k included everything from beginning to end. We have a lovely finish and didn’t skimp on things. I was also given a lot of items for review on the blog, which saved us money of course and allowed us to spend it in other places. This was pretty much all the money we had for the project, so had I not been given those things, we would have spent our money differently.
Attic Conversion Q&A Video:
I made a video a little while ago, talking about this in more detail (and answering a few other questions about living with a loft conversion – do you want to know how hot it gets?) so check it out, plus more of a peak at the attic itself.
I’m more than happy to answer any questions you might have about our attic conversion if I can, so leave them below and I’ll get back to you.
Are you thinking of doing a loft conversion to your home?