FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS
DOES AN ATTIC CONVERSION ADD VALUE TO A PROPERTY?
An attic conversion offers a great way to invest in your existing property to get a better price and increase the space. If you are happy where you are, it is the perfect way to increase meterage.
For as little as $40,000, an empty roof can become an additional premium room in your unused roof space, accessed via the best quality attic ladder. This is a highly cost effective option. It doesn’t involve long council processes and you don’t lose any space downstairs as the access is by an attic ladder which folds away when not in use.
If you are putting a new bedroom, an office or bathroom into the attic, the configuration most in demand, the average cost to convert this space is $150,000- $250,000. Access is with an internal staircase. What you lose in space for the staircase, you gain back with a bedroom, living room, even an extra bathroom. It takes about three months on average to convert a roof space into a habitable attic room. The attic solutions is a significantly cheaper and quicker option than other forms of extensions.
A high-quality, well-designed conversion, which forms a seamless part of the home will add value and boost its market value significantly and pay dividends for owners.
HOW MUCH SPACE DOES AN ATTIC TYPICALLY TAKE UP?
Depending on the nature of the roof, attic conversions can range in size from 20m2 to 60 m2, for something as simple as a retreat or study and up to significant conversions containing bedroom, bathroom and living areas.
DO YOU NEED COUNCIL PERMISSION TO CONVERT AN ATTIC INTO A ROOM?
It depends on your location and what you intend to do with the renovated space. However, if you’re looking at converting the roof cavity into a habitable room and changing the roof line you’ll certainly need council approval.
The Attic Group specialise in roof conversions and we take care of all the regulatory requirements. We understand council requirements, height limitations and heritage restrictions that may limit changes to facades and every council can be different.
WHAT ARE SOME OF THE PRACTICAL CONSIDERATIONS?
Understanding the site
The process of converting an attic starts off with understanding the site and having qualified people – architect and structural engineer, involved to help you determine how to design sympathetically within your parameters. The Attic Group has an experienced team of professionals to provide you with suitable options.
If it is an apartment you will need strata approval prior to commencing the project.
Be aware that, generally, at least 60 percent of the attic space will have to be at 2.2 metres high in order to meet habitation standards under the Building Code of Australia. If you have a permanent staircase installed you will need a head clearance of 2m all the way.
Windows, skylights and ventilation
The Building Code of Australia requires living spaces to have a certain amount of ventilation and access to natural light. Cross ventilation needs to be available, unless the room has a ceiling fan or an evaporative cooler.
The attic floor in the attic space has to be strong enough to cope with the extra weight. A structural engineer needs to assess your house if you're considering building an attic.
Wiring and safety
Typically, your roof space contains a great deal of your home’s electrical wiring. Therefore we need to be extremely careful even when inspecting the roof space.
DOES THERE NEED TO BE ALTERATIONS MADE TO THE SHAPE OF THE ROOF? IS THIS AN OPTION?
Many significant roof conversions include lifting the roof or adding dormer windows, creating height and maximising light.
A roof lift is where the ridge line of your existing roof is raised by constructing a new roof to the right height and pitch – providing all the extra space you need to create a really good sized room or even rooms. In most cases, there is no need to move out.
HOW BIG A JOB IS IT?
Can I stay in the house while the work goes on?
One of the benefits of converting a roof is the relative lack of disruption and the fact you can live in the house while the renovation is being built. Our licensed, experienced builders generally access the roof from outside, so the only invasive part is the installation of the stairs or the attic ladder.
How long will it take?
A typical conversion into a new room should take between eight to twelve weeks. It can be longer for significant conversions where the roof is being modified.
Where do you think the stairs will go?
Although your building consultant is a qualified tradesperson, he is more likely to leave the stair design and location to the architect. He is of course able to recommend stair location, but the architect has to take the position of the stairs very seriously, so as to be cost effective, not to disrupt the flow of the room downstairs and also consider the location where they finish above, as this will ultimately affect the design.
What’s not included in the price and why?
What’s not included in the price is the electrical, painting and the floor coverings. We do have trade-qualified electricians that are employed by us full time but we find it much more cost effective for the client if they are billed direct. We find that most clients are more than willing to paint their new extension and floor coverings is just a phone call away from carpet retailers.
What is the initial cost if we are to proceed to concept plans with the architect?
The initial cost if you are to proceed is $2400, this covers the cost of the architect and any administration fees associated with this service, but this fee is only applicable if you decide not to continue for any reason, and the concept plans are yours to keep. If you’re pleased with the concept plans then the Attic Group will price the project and present you with a fixed price quotation, and advise you of an estimated start date. If you’re happy to proceed to contract you’ll be introduced to our dedicated team of professionals and the $2400 architect fee will be absorbed into the total contract price.