If you want to add value and increase space, the only way is up!

South West London is no stranger to basement conversions but you may be digging deep in more than one sense, with home owners beginning to question the return on investment.

Loft conversions, on the other hand, have many advantages. They are almost always considered a ‘permitted development’ for Freehold premises, therefore need no planning permission, cause less disruption and add bags of value. In fact, a loft conversion is reputed to be the top home renovation for adding the most value to a property (13%), with a 70% return-on-investment, according to financial services company, Zopa.

As well as traditional loft conversions, SW London is seeing a number of rooftop pods being added - a room that is built out usually over half of the back addition giving a room approximately 3m x 3.5m in size. Pods really suit the period property stock here, so they shouldn’t be overlooked in tandem with a full loft conversion or on their own.

There’s also an emerging trend for buying or selling ‘airspace’ – that’s the thin air above a roof that the owner-occupier or freeholder owns. It’s quite possible to add an extra floor for yourself, create a roof terrace or build an entirely new flat to sell on subject to various consents.

Aspire has the following advice for anyone going up in the world:-

  • Seek professional advice if you’re a leaseholder with intentions of altering anything concerning the roof or loft.
  • If you’re selling an un-extended property, potential buyers may look for upward development potential, so consider offering the property with loft conversion plans in place.
  • Contact your local Aspire branch for examples of extended and un-extended properties for inspiration and to discover the price difference.