21 Apr 2011
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United Kingdom

If this would be better off in another section of the forum please let me know. We are looking to add some living space in the eaves of the roof of a 1.5 story bungalow. I am hoping that we can get builders in to alter the roof, build a dormer structure and fit cladding, windows etc. whatever is required to make a watertight structure, then we would complete the internal stuff DIY or with a bit of labour brought in as required to create a bathroom and small bedroom.

Here is a drawing of what we would like to achieve.


The first bit of advice I would appreciate is something on who I should be approaching to carry out this work. It seems like it falls between roofers, joiners and loft conversion companies. I want to control labour costs as much as possible by taking over the work once the build reaches a stage that I can tackle. I assume that companies that specialise in loft conversions would be less interested in this work and want to offer a complete package at a higher price, but I could be wrong.

That's my main concern at the moment, but if anyone can offer advice on another matter also it would be gratefully received. A purlin runs through the eaves about 1/3 the way up the rafters. You can see in the drawing that on the attached neighbouring property they have built a small dormer which stops at this purlin. I really want to get the purlin out of the way otherwise the rooms won't be much more than large cupboards. I imagine I will get a range of opinions from builders on the feasibility of this so would love to hear what you all have to say. The full width dormer would require the cutting of the rafters anyway, so I imagine the roof above would have to be supported otherwise anyway, and I'm not sure if the purlin would even be doing anything if the roof above it is cut away for a dormer. I hope that makes sense. I've included a cross section of the eave space which is to become the dormer. The purlin is shown at 91cm from the inner wall.


I understand that this would be within local planning rules and should come under permitted development. Thank you very much for any advice!
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My usual response but here goes - employ an architectural designer ( architect or architectural technician ) to survey your existing building and prepare existing plans ,elevations and section with a proposed scheme design for your approval before preparing and submitting a Full Plans Submission for Building Regulations approval. A structural engineer will be required for any structural calculations . When approved you will be able to send the drawings/construction specification to 3 or 4 good small local builders for quotations for carrying out the work.

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