We're often asked if we can explain the "Stages of a Loft Conversion". Given that the exact sequence of events on site has to be specific to each project there is unfortunately no generic schedule that works in every case. That said the vast majority of Loft Conversions do follow a fairly similar routine which is more or less described by the images below. I hope they help you to feel better informed! In any case once we have drawn up your Loft Conversion Plans your contractor should be able to work out a schedule for you that is tailored to your project.
Starting with a typical hipped roof on a semi-detached house like this:
Stage 1. Strip the roof
The Loft Conversion starts by stripping off the tiles/slates, battens etc where the roof needs to be extended and remove any rafters, struts, purlins etc that are no longer needed. Set up temporary support for the remaining structure.
Stage 2. Install steels for the loft floor
Steel beams are installed to provide a framework from which to support the floor and roof structure of the new Loft Conversion.
Stage 3. Install Floor Joists
New floor joists are fitted between the steel beams to complete the floor structure of the Loft Conversion.
Stage 4. Build a Gable (if needed) and install the Ridge Beam
If the Loft Conversion requires that the side wall is built up into a Gable then it is typically built after the floor joists are installed. The Gable Wall supports the ridge beam so that is typically installed at the same time.
5. Construct the Dormer
If a Dormer is needed as part of the Loft Conversion then it will be built sometime after the floor. The Dormer is a timber framed structure which extends the amount of usable space in the Loft Conversion.
6. Installations and applying finishes
Finishing a Loft Conversion after the main structure is in place normally takes a lot longer than the initial build of the structure. Windows, doors, stairs, plumbing, electrics etc all need to be installed. Surfaces need to be applied including roofing, flooring, plastering, tiling etc. Lots of different tradespeople may be required and they will need to be booked in in the right order but, in the end the finished Loft Conversion would look something like this:
6. Do Some Snagging
Snagging is a process at the end of a building job which ensures that all the little odds and ends get finished off to your satisfaction. You and the contractor go around the site together and look over the whole job to agree a final and complete list of all the items which need to be finished off, corrected or altered in order that the job can be considered completely finished. The contractor completes the list and that's it - the Loft Conversion is finished!