Flooring a Loft for a hobby room

1 Jun 2011
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United Kingdom
Hi,I would like to Floor my loft and get some electricity in it aswell as I would like to use it as a hobby/computer/light storage room.
Firstly would I need planning permission to do this and would I need a window even though it is not going to be a bedroom?
I originally thought I could get away with just strengthening the existing joists and putting chipboard flooring down but after reading online that a loft is only meant for light storage am seeking some advice as to what I will need to do inorder to use it for the above purpose.
Any help or advice is appreciated.
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Plenty of people have boarded lofts with lights and power up there, I think that it all depends on how 'Official you want to make it, and what you want to use it for.

I have got a boarded loft, and my boys have their scalextric set up up there.

You should only need planning permission if you are going to install windows overlooking other peoples property - Do you need a window?

You should also be able to install a socket Spur up in the loft without getting building control involved.

I don't think that there is anything to stop you boarding a loft and using it as a hobby area, but use common sense when assessing whether the area is suitable.

For playing scalextric with my sons, I consider that my loft is perfectly strong enough, but if my hobby was body building with heavy weights then I would think twice about it.

If you need a 'proper' room, then you will be entering into the realms of a formal loft conversion.

If you do want to strengthen the existing floor, you could always lay stronger joists parallel to the existing ceiling joists, (making sure that they are supported at the same points) and then lay the flooring on them.

Trada Span Tables will give you the info you need regarding the joist sizes / spans and load carrying capability.

Putting electricity, electrical gadgets, people etc into the loft creates the potential for a fire hazard in the same way as putting people and electrics in any other part of the home.

So, it is up to you what you can "get away with" but do you really want to...?
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