London Architects

London Architects

London Architects

London Architects About us

When you own a home in London, you become part of the city’s long, distinguished history. When you make changes to that home, it becomes a part of yours.

We launched Scenario in 2007 with a customised, out-of-the-box approach to modernising period architecture. We collaborate closely with our clients because we know every scenario is different. The scenario dictates the flow, the fabric, the degree of luxury that makes a house personal, whatever the era or provenance. The scenario tells the story.

Our landmark project Scenario House helped established our practice among London’s top residential architects. Located in Stoke Newington, London, it showcases the potential of the city’s period stock to adapt to changing lifestyles with fluid lines, unusual angles and open spaces. In 2018, it was shortlisted for several prestigious prizes, including the RIBA London Awards.

London Architects Your London project

Looking for London architects to renovate, extend or rebuild your home? Come share your plans and we’ll show you how we can transform your space to suit your lifestyle.

In the meantime, guide yourself through each stage of the process with our brief illustrated overview. Most residential architectural projects in London require planning permission from the local council. London architects like Scenario have experience working with planning officials to help you secure those permissions.


Discover if your architect has had success steering planning applications through your local council. Visit the “planning applications” page of your council’s website and enter the architect’s name in the search criteria.

London Architects

London Architects

Scenario is an established architecture practice focusing on contemporary residential design. We take on projects of every scale and scope, from home refurbishment, renovation and expansions to new-builds.

London Architects Working with Scenario Architecture

Our young, dynamic team tackles projects of every scale and complexity, from interior alterations to full renovations and new-build homes. We guide our clients through every stage of the process, from initial consultations through the planning process, construction and final decoration. We plan to complete all our projects on time and on budget.

As a RIBA Chartered Practice, Scenario complies with the strict criteria of the Royal Institute of Chartered Architects. We offer our clients insurance, quality-management protection and health and safety measures.

Our architects use innovative 3D visualisation tools to choose fixtures and finishes and simulate natural light. We produce reliable construction information using 3D building information modelling (BIM) technology, saving our clients time and money with accurate, coordinated project data.

This case study from the Chartered Institute of Building (CIOB), featuring a Scenario project, demonstrates the benefits of advanced technology for domestic architecture.

London Architects

London Architects In our client's words

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London Architects Further Reading

London is unique in its great selection of elegant period homes. Whatever your neighbourhood, you’ll find a stock of desirable homes dating back to the Georgian, Regency or Victorian era. Often, though, what these homes reflect on the outside does not compare to how they look on the inside.

London’s strict conservation laws mean many buildings must maintain their architectural integrity on the façade. Yet details hidden from the street view are vulnerable to change. Over centuries, domestic London architecture has been subdivided, fragmented, modernised, replumbed and repaired – and not always compassionately. That doesn’t mean a home with wonky floors, awkward functionality and obliterate period details cannot be salvaged. When looking to buy a home or trying to envision the future of an existing home, it’s always necessary to look past unnecessary walls and difficult corners to what a home can be. There is always new space to incorporate or dead space to recoup, whether in a dark loft, a rear kitchen, a stubborn side-return or barely-there basement storage.

Owners of London architecture must always be prepared to discover deeper problems throughout a renovation. Yet a problem in the hands of a good architect can often lead to a more beautiful and more efficient solution. Defunct electricals and obsolete plumbing can lead to smart systems that promise to save time and energy in the future. A troublesome roof can open up the possibilities for a roof of eco-friendly sedum or a bank of solar panelling. Remember when working out your remodelling budget that good design today may eradicate untold costs in the future.

It is possible to maintain the best period details like original mouldings, timber beams and gables while expanding Victorian and Edwardian homes – just as it’s possible to open up interiors to light and greater ease of movement and reintroduce an original fireplace or floor. New cutting-edge materials and a creative approach can help transform a period home not only for the way we live today, but for future generations. Prioritising good design, incorporating personal habits into the flow of your space and having a liaison throughout the process will speed up the process and eliminate any drama.

Renovating London architecture is more than a luxury in today’s landscape. Renovating well is a necessity for maintaining the rich architectural fabric of the city and housing large families in once-poky spaces. It reduces the need for new construction and cuts down on wasted energy in the long term. Most of all, improving your home goes toward building more beautiful, liveable London.

London Architects Local Architects

Taken in its entirety, London appears to have a range of wildly different architectural styles, dating back a thousand years and soaring overhead in futuristic steel and glass. Most Londoners, however, will recognise the residential architecture that flourished over a few hundred years. When London began to expand beyond the old city in the 18th century, after the destruction of the Great Fire had cleared the path to renewal, residential terraces appeared across town. By the Victorian era, architects had perfected an attractive, accessible template for building family homes. They built thousands across the capital and the Edwardians added thousands more, which is why the style, structure and layout are so familiar to us today. These houses, and their surrounds, are a major element of the city’s history.

If you live in London or the surrounding areas, chances are you have slept in, or are now living in, a home with this familiar heritage, in a neighbourhood that may go back even further. Finding an architect who understands and respects this heritage is the key to updating a house with historical value, which is why you should seek out someone local to you.

Local architects will have an appreciation for the neighbourhood and experience working within the parameters of heritage building controls. They may have relationships with local tradespeople and connections with council officials; knowledge of weather patterns, groundwater levels, sightlines and light; they’ll know how ambitious it’s possible to be in your specific area, and take you around to view similar homes in your area. Local architects may even have homes of their own nearby that demonstrate their skills and ambition.

To find local architects who might suit your project, start by asking friends and neighbours for their input. Their suggestions will be far valuable than an endless stream of Google data. Internet resources like Houzz ( and HomeOwners Alliance ( will turn up firms that operate near you, offer links to their work and provide tips for your first meeting.

Always consult the Royal Institute of British Architects, or RIBA (, to look into architects you may want to work with. Make sure they’re registered as a RIBA-chartered practice and have experience working with planning authorities in the area. And then meet your makers. Chances are you’ll find someone inspiring and capable, who cares as much about your neighbourhood as you do yourself.

London Architects Architects near me

Moving house is a daunting prospect even before you consider the work yet to be done. It is increasingly rare, in and around London, to find a home that suits you and your family to a T. The longer you live in your new home, the more you’ll recognise what needs to change in order to live comfortably and efficiently for the long term.

Finding an architect near you, who understands the architectural landscape you’re part of, is crucial for transforming your living space while adhering to local building regulations and fitting into the neighbourhood. A good architect will understand the sacred nature of the built environment as well as the period look of your home. The job of a good architect is to accept these existing variables, and play to them in a way that will allow you to live a modern life in a period setting.

This does not mean you and your architect will be working at cross-purposes. The charm of living in a place with history is embracing that history in a way that works for you. And the challenge is achieving a unique, contemporary space with nods to the past that succeeds without compromise. Architect and client should work in close conjunction from start to finish, on the same team. The sum should be greater than its parts.

Even a new-build home can sit happily within a neighbourhood with history if your architect understands the area, its people and the protectors from the local council. Within a reasonable envelope, with dimensions that respect local height caps and sightlines, interiors can take on all manner of styles. Bedrooms can be enlarged and reworked, or carved out under the ground. Extra bathrooms can be magicked from awkward corners; play rooms for children can emerge from lofty gables or expanded kitchens. Space can be captured from fallow driveways or rafters.

One of the drawbacks of a period home is the inevitability of dark, windowless spaces. A deft architect can work within the confines of neighbourhood traditions to draw in light with glass extensions and two-storey voids in the floor plan. They can introduce rooflights, clerestory windows or tempered-glass room dividers. At the same time, they can harness storage space in unused corners to give the illusion of open, minimalist living in a busy family home.

In these ways, altering a heritage home in a conservation area can be as fulfilling as building anew.

London Architects Frequently Asked Questions

    There is no doubt that choosing an architect is a big decision and there’s a huge amount of information to consider. As you may have already experienced, different firms and architectural practices across London tend to differ in terms of the language they use, which aspects they emphasise and in their fees and scope structures. We have compiled an essential guide to choosing an architect, which includes the three most important considerations to have on your list whilst you come to a decision. This guide is based on our fifteen years of experience as a top architectural practice in London and includes our expert recommendations to ensure you make the right choice and select the architect that is best suited to you and your project. Click here to read the full guide.

    London Architects

    FAQHow should I decide which architect to work with?
    The scenario design process was developed, tested and perfected through over a decade of extensive delivery of residential projects within and around London, some of its key features are listed below:   
    • Scenario based design – We start each and every project with a meticulous analysis of our client’s vision, requirements and aspirations. We do this by asking our clients to imagine their everyday scenarios living in the completed house and describe their desired interaction with it. 
    We then translate the resulting high definition brief into an informative and revealing 3-dimensional simulation, illuminating aspirations, requirements and patterns of habitation. 
    • Uniquely interactive - Our client’s deep involvement in the process does not stop with completion of the brief. Our design meetings are highly interactive, informal and fun. 
    Sitting together in front of a real time 3D model of the proposed design with realistic materials, lighting and textures we push and pull the proposed scheme together to explore its full potential and drag and drop different materials to explore various options. hen we invite our clients to take a virtual reality tour through advanced equipment that is always available in our practice for our clients to explore their projects at different stages of development. 
    • Designed to reflect you – Based purely on your lifestyle, aspirations and requirements and free from externally imposed concepts, metaphors and pre-conceptions, a completely fresh and unique design will gradually emerge and it will tell your story not ours. 
    It will not look like an image cut out of a trendy architecture magazine and not designed to intentionally impress anyone. It will feel familiar, warm and inviting and you will recognise yourself in it because it will be a genuine expression of the unique way in which you and your family wish to interact with it and enjoy it for many years to come.

    London Architects

    FAQWhat is unique about the Scenario design process?
    Any architectural project comprises three main aspects, Creative design, Technical design and Project Management. A successful architectural project can only be achieved when all three aspects are properly performed and harmoniously integrated by an experienced professional. But can we really except a single person to specialise and shine in all three aspects and furthermore skilfully negotiate and balance the often contradictory challenges these aspects present? The basic assumption underlying the common structure of almost all other architectural practices today is that it is possible and this is precisely what is expected from the lone and often junior Architect that would typically be assigned to run your project start to finish. Scenario works in a completely different and new way, we believe in specialism and teamwork and therefore assign three experienced specialists for each and every project. A project team in Scenario is composed of a Project Director, a Designer and a Technical Designer, seamlessly collaborating to deliver results, which are noticeably superior to anything that a single person, skilful as they may be, could ever produce.

    London Architects

    FAQWho will be assigned to work on my project?
    A key aspect, absolutely necessary to ensure successful delivery of your project is appointing a suitable and competent professional team. If we work together on your project we would be appointed as your Architects and Lead Consultants and help you to assemble the rest of the professional team. Most projects in and around London will require at least four additional consultants, a Structural Engineer, a Quantity Surveyor for cost control, an Approved Inspector to ensure and certify compliance with building regulations and a Party Wall Surveyor if any work is to be done to a party wall or structure. For some projects, depending on scale, complexity and your specific aspirations it may be recommended/required to use the services of additional consultants. Including but not limited to: Planning, Heritage, Right of Light, Landscape Designer, Audio Visual and Building Services Engineer. When appropriate, we will discuss these options with you and obtain relevant quotes for all additional consultants for you to consider.

    London Architects

    FAQWhich additional consultants are required for my project?
    Planning in the U.K in general and in Greater London in particular is admittedly a tricky business. It is a complex maze of policies, standards and regulations that requires specialised and up to date knowledge and skills to navigate successfully.  Over the years we developed a strong approach and an effective methodology, allowing us to maintain an outstanding track record stretching over more than a decade. Successfully securing planning permission for our clients across Greater London and the Home Counties.  The key aspects of our approach to planning are listed below: 
    • Collaborative – We start the conversation with planners early and advise most of our clients to seek pre-planning advice prior to submission of a full planning application. Our experience shows that when properly consulted and liaised with, most planning case officers will be receptive to conduct a professional dialogue, increasing chances of successes. 
    • Strategic – We tailor a custom planning strategy for each project based on its circumstances such as planning history, local context and specific challenging elements. We sometimes split applications or introduce minor tweaks to the scheme during the consideration period in conversation with the officers to prevent one contentious element from jeopardising approval of the main scheme.
    • Professional – Our experience shows that the quality and clarity of the submission in terms of background research, planning history of the property and context, precedent and of course the arguments presented to support the case has a tremendous effect on success rate. 

    London Architects

    FAQWhat is Scenario’s approach to planning?
    The standard consideration period for a residential project is eight weeks, this is the official time frame for your local council to carry out consultation with the neighbours and reach a decision.  We recommend allowing for a minimum of ten weeks from submission to decision as in practice the process always takes slightly longer for the following reasons: 
    • The decision period clock only starts ticking once the application is validated by the Council, This requires then to check that the forms are completed correctly and that the submission contains all the necessary drawings, statements and reports.
    Validation can take anything from a few days to couple of weeks when the council is very busy, which is most of the time…
    • Although required by law to provide a decision within the statutory eight weeks period, it is not uncommon for councils to miss the deadline of the consideration period, normally only by a few days, sometimes longer. 
    While there are some effective measures to apply pressure, which we do not hesitate to use when appropriate, it is generally beneficial for the project to bear with the council a little longer. 
    • In some cases the council may ask us as your agent for an extension of time, this may be requested due to internal reasons or as an acceptable result of a professional discussion that we are conducting with them about certain aspects of the application that they are not sure about.

    London Architects

    FAQHow long will it take to obtain planning permission for my project?
    Once we have an initial scheme designed for your project which you are happy to proceed with, we will advise whether we recommend obtaining pre-planning advice or proceeding directly to the submission of a full planning application. Most of our projects are submitted first to pre-planning when the following applies.
    • Our experience shows that planning officers respond better to projects when they feel consulted and collaborated with. We find that when we truly listen to their often helpful and valid feedback and treat them as consultants for the projects and not representative of an evil enforcing authority, they tend to collaborate well with us and demonstrate increased flexibility.
    • Although the council in theory have eight weeks to consider your application, in practice they are constantly overloaded. They will only look at your application in the last few days of the consideration period. If this is the first time that they come across a scheme that they were never consulted about, our chance to secure permission for you in a single attempt is significantly compromised.
    • The standard practice is for the council to consider the full planning application as submitted and then issue a yes or no decision. Case officers are not required or even encouraged to enter a discussion with us or accept resubmission of minor changes to the proposed scheme during the consideration period.
    In practice our established working relationships and long-standing experience working across Greater London and the Home Counties often enables us to have a meaningful discussion and even introduce minor tweaks to the submitted scheme within the consideration period and prevent the application from being rejected. The chances for this strategy to deliver the desired results increases significantly with projects which were submitted first for a pre-planning advice.

    London Architects

    FAQWhat is pre-planning and will it be required for my project?
    In the past, it was common practice for local authorities to impose sustainability standards on residential developments. However, the 2015 Deregulation Act removed the obligation on local authorities to require any standard at all, which means the only requirements having fallen back to those of the Building Regulations.  With no clear and improved targets to work towards, in collaboration with Envision (, we have created optional Sustainability ‘Levels’ to offer our clients the chance to drastically improve the sustainability credentials of their home. These ‘Levels’ encompassing Bronze, Silver, Gold and Diamond, traverse a clear and applicable route from basic compliance with current Building Regulations all the way to the full and rigorous HQM (Home Quality Mark) certification within Level Diamond. As the packages become more elaborate in terms of sustainability, analysis and implemented measures, they provide increasing tangible benefits. Ranging from thermal and acoustic comfort and wellbeing, to reduced carbon foot print, savings on running costs and significant advantages through the planning process.  The more elaborate packages obviously entail higher cost in terms of professional fees as well as impact on the construction cost, although each sustainability ‘Level’ will endeavour to not overly burden the construction budget.

    London Architects

    FAQWhat is Scenario’s approach to sustainability?
    In a nutshell building control is the means by which Local Authorities enforce compliance with current Building Regulations.  In practice there are two main ways to go about obtaining the required advice and certification for your project, via your Local Council’s Building Control Department or via direct appointment of an Approved Inspector who is authorised to carry out the inspection and certification on behalf of any local authority.   The role of either the Council’s Building Control Officer or an Approved Inspector is to verify that your project meets all current Building Regulations. They will review and approve all the drawings, inspect the actual work carried out on site and once the project is completed, issue the final compliance certificate. Due to an open market, healthy competition between local councils and approved inspectors, the process and associated costs are almost identical. Having said that, our experience is that the private inspectors still feel and behave more as your appointed consultants and the council’s service still feels more like a statutory inspection and it is often slower and less responsive.  While it is always good to be informed and understand the process well, as your appointed architects we will take care of this aspect of the project for you and save you considering comparable quotes that we will obtain on your behalf and appointing the selected provider. You can leave this aspect of your project entirely with us.  Building control is required for almost all projects, and for all the projects we ever worked on as only minor renovation works may be exempt.

    London Architects

    FAQWhat is building control and is it required for my project?
    Currently we recommend allowing between £2,500 and £3,000 per square metre for side extensions, rear extensions or front extensions. For basement extensions, which are most expensive way to add space to your home, we recommend that you allow between £3,000 and £3,500 per square metre. When it comes to roof extensions, our experience shows that it is better to allow a lump sum of £40,000-£60,000 for loft conversions with dormer windows and between £80,000 and £120,000 for mansard roof extensions. These ranges are based on averages from numerous actual projects that we have completed in and around London since we established Scenario in 2007. We only use these rough costs per square metre during the early stages of design to maintain awareness of your target budget until a cost professional is appointed and more accurate methods of estimation are employed. The actual cost for your project will depend on many factors, including the complexity of the design, level of structural support required, and selection of fixtures, fittings material finishes. Using these rough ranges as a guide we will work together with you in an interactive process to optimise budget and scope and find the balance that works best for you. The estimated costs per square metre mentioned above are for the build costs only and exclude VAT and professional fees.

    London Architects

    FAQWhat is the cost of building an extension?
    Currently we recommend allowing between £2,500 and £3,000 per square metre for areas which will undergo an extensive renovation. We designate an area of the project as extensive renovation if the planned works includes substantial changes to layouts, significant structural works, re-plumbing, re-wiring and full redecoration. For areas of lighter internal renovation which do not require significant changes to layout or substantial structural works but do require full redecoration, re-plumbing and rewiring, we recommend allowing between £2,000 and £2,500 as an estimated cost per square metre, we designate these areas as requiring medium renovation. If there areas in your project which only call for a light renovation such as re-plastering, and painting, installing new floor finishes and light modifications of electrics and plumbing fittings, we will designate these as areas of light renovation and recommend that you allow £1,500-£2,000 per square metre or even as low as between £1,000-£1,500 if you only have light touches in mind. The real cost for your project will depend on several different variables including the complexity of the design, extent of structural works and level of fixtures, fittings and material finishes. These estimated costs per square metre are for the build cost excluding VAT and professional fees.

    London Architects

    FAQWhat is the cost of an internal refurbishment?
    If you are thinking about building a new house from scratch for which the term Self Build is often used, we currently recommend allowing between £2,500 and £3,500 per square metre for projects in and around London. This may sound like a very wide range initially, perhaps too wide to be useful? As soon as we can establish even a few of the basics of your requirements and aspirations for the project we can safely narrow it down and customise it to match your intentions. The key parameters that will help us to refine initial estimates are whether or not a basement is required to achieve your target floor area, the likely construction method and corresponding structural approach and of course your desired level of fixtures, fittings and material finishes. Another key parameter that we must consider right from the outset is the level of sustainability that we are aiming at, are you satisfied with the base line requirements as defined by current building regulations, or should we aim higher? Working together with sustainability experts we have created our own bespoke set of sustainability packages which allows you to place your sustainability target anywhere you wish. This can range from basic compliance to an extremely sustainable and energy efficient standard which comes with great savings on running costs, future proofing and wellbeing benefits such as improved air quality, thermal comfort, and considerate and healthier surface finishes.

    London Architects

    FAQWhat is the cost of building a new house?
    The fee structure that we will offer will depend on the type and scale of your project as well as the scope required from us. The vast majority of the projects we take on are what we call ‘full projects’, these are projects for which we will provide full Architectural services from inception to completion, covering the standard scope of services offered by most RIBA Chartered Architects and more. For these full projects our fees will be calculated on the basis of an agreed percentage of the final cost of the building works exclusive of VAT and professional fees. At any given time, we will calculate our fees based on the latest construction cost estimates available until the final cost of the building works has been ascertained. Our fees will be adjusted both forward and retrospectively to reflect any increase in budget and scope of the project, and forward only (due to work already completed) to reflect any decrease in budget/scope. During early stages, our fees will be calculated based on our in-house estimation tool and once available, on estimates by the appointed Quantity Surveyor, followed by actual prices of returned tenders and finally, the contract sum reflecting any changes during construction. Under unusual circumstances we may agree to take on projects only up to a certain stage, for example up to planning, and sometimes from a certain stage if we are taking over from another Architect. For these ‘partial scope projects’ we will normally put forward a simple fixed lump sum proposal.

    London Architects

    FAQWhat is the fee structure used by Scenario Architecture?

London Architects Can I Convert My Loft Space?

If you are keen to make the most of the space in your home, you need to consider all the possible parts of it that you might be able to utilise. Many people with lofts in their homes have considered from time to time the possibility of converting it into something else – most likely a bedroom with an en-suite, or alternatively a study or working area. But can you do this with your loft space – and if so, what might be involved in the process?

The Benefits of Loft Conversions

First of all, let’s look into some of the main benefits you can expect to find from loft conversions. Generally, converting a loft will enable you to gain some extra space in your home without having to relocate, which can famously be a huge hassle. You might be growing your family and you feel you need an extra room, or you might be due to start working from home and you need an office. You might even just want a brand new, luxury bathroom.

With a well-designed and created loft conversion, your home can become a much more luxurious and comfortable place to live, and your quality of life can significantly improve. Of course, there is also the fact that you will likely be adding a considerable amount of money to the value of the home, which is great if you are thinking about selling at any point in the future (no matter how far down the line).

Analysing the Situation

If you want to convert your loft space, you will need to analyse the situation first, and see whether you are in a good position to do so. There are many considerations on this front, from budget to how much space you actually have up there, and you will find it is probably necessary to get in touch with a reliable and experienced architect, who can help you to work that out.

With a proper analysis, you should be able to determine not just whether it is physically and fiscally possible to convert your loft space, but what kind of conversion you might be able to go for.

The Physical Space

One of the most important factors in any loft conversion, and the first thing you need to check out regarding the physical space itself, is the head height. You need to be able to comfortably stand up in there, or else it is unlikely you are going to be able to convert it into anything much. At the highest point of the loft, the lowest it should be is 2.3m/7.5ft, to ensure that it is high enough for you to actually live in.

If there is just not enough headroom, there are ways around it – including lowering the downstairs ceiling a little. Of course, that extra work needs to be taken into consideration as well. Likewise, if you have a shallow-pitched roof, it is still possible to have your conversion carried out, but you will probably need a dormer window to make it work out.

As well as the height of the roof, you need to take a good look at its actual structure. Hopefully, what you have in your loft is a cut roof, along with attic trusses. This will ensure that the converted space is going to be as habitable as you would hope, largely owing to how much more open it is going to be. This makes the whole project so much simpler, as all you really need to do then is to install some reinforcement for the structure and build access to the space.

These types of structure are rare, however, especially if your home was built in the past 50 years. In all likelihood, you will have fink trusses, which are W-shaped and which are absolutely essential for the structure of the building. This does not in any way mean it is impossible to convert the loft – just that it will be a more significant job doing so. This is exactly why you need to hire an architect to help you design the space – they will already know exactly what needs to be done in order to convert the space safely and effectively.

The last thing you need to look into physically is the plumbing and electrics, although these days it is fairly straightforward to have these sorted for any space in the home. If you are keen to ensure that you are accommodating for this, however, it is wise to think about it early on and to get your architect to consider it too.

Building Regulations

As well as all of that, you need to make sure that what you have planned is actually legal. Much of this can be a real headache to figure out for yourself, so again you are probably going to find it a lot easier to speak to an architect, who will already know everything there is to know about these regulations and permissions that you need to abide by.

That being said, it is easier than ever before to convert a loft space and stay within regulations, thanks in large part to the changes to development laws that came in 2008. This means that it is very unlikely you will need to get planning permission for your loft conversion. Of course, the conversion still needs to comply with all remaining building regulations, as any form of extension needs to. With the right kind of professional help from an architect, you can ensure that this is the case.

In particular, you need to make sure that the new space is protected from the home by half an hour’s worth of fire resistance. That will normally mean installing fire doors.

If you are keen on converting your loft space, it is perfectly doable, as you can see. But before you take another step forward, do make sure that you are seeking out the help and assistance of a professional and experienced team of architects, who can help you along the way.