With property prices booming, many savvy homeowners are looking to cash in on the low interest rates and use a mortgage to boost the value of their property by renovating and creating home extensions. Adding an extra room or two to a home can boost the value dramatically, and it also saves on the cost of moving and stamp duty.
The nature of renovation means that no two projects are ever the same. If you are planning on starting a large scale renovation on a property, you’ll already know that there’s a lot of planning to do before your project starts. Protecting your investment is crucial, remember to seek out specialist renovation insurance before your project gets underway.
Loft conversions offer the chance for additional space without the need to extend outwards, and in areas like London, there is only room to extend up or down! Like any new building work or significant home alterations, all loft conversions require Building Regulations approval to ensure safety (and practicality) measures are in place.
When renovating your loft, any additions of up to 50m³ (40m³ for a terraced home) fall under Permitted Development, however, you will need planning permission for any conversion if you live in a listed building or even a Conservation Area.
Take a look at The Party Wall Act (1996) too, as this Act makes you responsible in England and Wales for any damage that your project might do to your neighbour’s property. The Party Wall Act may apply to you so we recommend you understand what your obligations are around protecting your work, the properties of your neighbours, keeping everyone informed and approaching your work in an open and transparent way.
It’s important to remember that in general building sites are fundamentally very dangerous places, and you have to understand your liability to others – from just the casual visitor, to permanent contractors and their employees. You should ensure that you carry property owner’s liability for £2m as a minimum. Unsure? Then seek the advice of a Renovation Insurance broker, who will be able to guide you in the restrictions of liability insurance, in relation to your bespoke renovation project.
When planning your renovation project, always remember that most projects take a lot longer than originally planned. So if you are planning a tight time frame, allow yourself a little extra time to not only complete the work, but to also plan the project, hire the right workmen, sort out property insurance and allow time for setbacks. Finally, if there are any part of the project you are feeling hesitant with, then seek the advice of a professional, plenty of companies offer free advice – so use this to your advantage!