Fire regs in a three storey house...

23 Nov 2014
Reaction score
United Kingdom
Hi everyone,

My partner and I purchased our first home (a 3 storey) about 3 years ago, and being naive first time buyers, we stupidly did not do our research and had no idea about the fire regulations of 3 storey homes. This has meant that several plans we had for the house are now simply not possible.

Despite the house being built in 2001, it doesn't meet the fire regs of today for 3 storey homes (for example, the staircases are not enclosed).

We have accepted that it will just be too much work and expense to bother doing anything at all to the top floor, due to issues with window heights and the open staircase. However, we would really like to remove an ensuite on the middle floor to make an adjoining bedroom larger. We have a large bedroom with ensuite, and then a boxroom, and would like to knock the ensuite into the boxroom to make two decent sized rooms. Is there any way that fire regs could get in the way of this? The new habitable space would just be part of an existing room which, as far as I'm aware, does meet building regs... My overall question is, when work is done to a three storey house, does the whole house then have to meet the fire regulations? Or only the specific work you are doing? Could our idea be a problem because the rest of the house doesn't meet the current fire regs? I hope that makes sense, I am struggling to explain what I mean.

Any advice would be most welcome :)
Sponsored Links
You may be misinterpreting the regulations. Stairs do not have to be enclosed.

Essentially, there is considered to be a greater risk with three story and higher properties. How that risk is dealt with can differ.

The main concern is fire safety and means of escape. Any work to other parts of the property will only relate to providing a safe means of escape, or if need be prevention of fire spread and early detection. As this is a relatively modern three storey, it would have much of this already, and the criteria would only be to not make it any worse with whatever alterations you propose.
Thank you Woody, that's quite reassuring - I didn't realise that the stairs didn't need to be enclosed either. It seems that when we do look into things we only end up more confused! Hopefully the middle en-suite removal idea will be a goer :)

DIYnot Local

Staff member

If you need to find a tradesperson to get your job done, please try our local search below, or if you are doing it yourself you can find suppliers local to you.

Select the supplier or trade you require, enter your location to begin your search.

Are you a trade or supplier? You can create your listing free at DIYnot Local

Sponsored Links