When the time comes that you realise you need more room in your home and your family or lifestyle has outgrown the space you have there are a few options. You could take the most expensive and time-consuming option of moving home. The problem is this is not only costly but could involve uprooting your family from its support network or a longer commute in to work.

Having grown used to your home one of the best things to do is maximise the space you have. A very good and common option is the loft extension. Especially as with current legislation this is covered under your permitted development rights and unless certain sizes or other factors are exceeded you do not need planning permission.

In addition to giving you the breathing room you need it can be a very savvy financial decision as well. A survey by the respected site OnTheMarket.com showed that the average loft extension adds around 21% to the value of a home and in some areas such as London this can be even higher with figures of up to 24 or 25% quoted. This is certainly a serious consideration as it adds a great deal more flexibility to your future options.

Most people will have seen the standard ‘loft as an extra bedroom’ conversions but we caught up with Jack Riley from Dulwich Loft Conversions to find out some of the more interesting uses of the space he has seen.

“Well, especially nowadays we are seeing a lot more being set up as home offices with all the remote working that is happening.”

We certainly cannot disagree, and it makes a lot of sense. If you have the opportunity to work from home whether your own business or as an employee it certainly makes sense to set up a dedicated, distraction free and comfortable work zone.

But it is not only that. He also flagged a few more examples of maximising the space in more exciting ways that he had encountered.

Some big loft conversions that have plenty of space take the radical option of placing a large, open plan kitchen up there. One advantage is that you often have easy ventilation options for cooking smells or smoke and if you had restricted kitchen space before you now have an entire floor.

In a similar vein, some people make use of this space to set up party rooms with central bars as ideal social centres of the home.

Depending on the views you have around you a panoramic, large glass area penthouse style is another possibility.

The things you can do are limited only by your imagination. A list of the various uses that Jack has seen in his career may even spark some ideas in your own mind. For example:

  • A cinema room.
  • A dedicated playroom for the kids.
  • If your bedroom space is limited how about a dressing room or walk in wardrobe?
  • Lover of books? What about a little library and dedicated reading space?
  • If you have the room either a little sitting room area or an en-suite bathroom?

The list goes on and on. One thing for sure, you do not have to go with the same bland options as the house next door!

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