Building a loft
Qs re: regulations and DIY
, Nov 28 2012 02:25 PM
5 replies to this topic
Posted 28 November 2012 - 02:25 PM
Our second bedroom has an extremely high ceiling - it basically extends up the two stories of our apartment. We've always wanted to build a loft/mezzanine in there so that the room can do double duty as a music studio and guest room (desk with all DH's music equipment on the loft, bed on the ground underneath). Our plan is to build the loft over the whole width of the room, and about a third of the depth (if that makes any sense!) so that we don't completely lose the lovely light or the expanse of the high ceiling.
Anyways - DH wants to DIY it, which makes me a little nervous. He is an electrician and very handy, has a good understanding of construction generally and has built things before - but not something structural like this (though he did assist his builder friend when they built a music studio in the garage of our last apartment). When I suggested we ask the same builder friend or someone else to help, or at least to look at what we plan to do, he got really offended. He insists that it's easy, he knows exactly how to go about it and it will be as solid as a rock. He's explained the plan to me and it does seem like a logical, solid design (from my layman's understanding of construction, that is) but I'm still worried it won't work or, much worse, be dangerous.
Which brings me to my main question - are there council regulations around doing work like this in your own home, and is it illegal to DIY something like this without a licensed builder at least approving it? Even if it's perfect and completely structurally sound, I don't want to run into problems further down the track when we go to sell the apartment.
Edited by Academic, 28 November 2012 - 02:26 PM.
Posted 28 November 2012 - 02:33 PM
Your not just sticking up a wall, I would be getting a builder at the very least to sign off on it. You will have to make sure the floor can actually support the weight you are wanting it to hold, plus the bearing walls that you would no doubt be building onto/against need to be able to support the extra materials.
Posted 28 November 2012 - 03:06 PM
Talk to the council, they will be able to tell you what he can and cannot do legally.
Posted 28 November 2012 - 03:20 PM
It probably varies from council to council, but we looked into it when we did some reno's at our old house and we were told that as a general rule, as long as it didn't alter the outside appearance of the house (ie, moving windows around, adding external walls for extensions etc) we could pretty much do whatever we want to the inside.
In your case, I would definitley get a builder, at least to do the structural stuff... let your DH do things like gyprocking and laying the floor, but get a professional in to make sure it can hold the weight and that stairs are safe.
Posted 28 November 2012 - 03:47 PM
You can do whatever you want but when you come to sell the place it will be an issue if there isn't any paperwork to show it has been checked and signed off by someone qualified. We looked at a house with an unapproved basement and the bank wouldn't give us a loan because of lack of approvals.
Posted 28 November 2012 - 03:59 PM
I was going to say a similar thing to Bluenomi.
Aside from the fact that you'd want to get an engineer to make sure what you're building is going to be strong enough to bear the load without compromising the existing structure, you should also check whether you will need a permit. Just because it's inside and it can't be seen, it still may require a permit, just as converting your attic space into useable space does.
Otherwise, when you sell the house, you will either have to remove the structure, or have it retrospectively approved, which can be difficult to do.
My SIL tried to purchase a house a few months ago, and once they got the papers to the solicitors, they found out that the pergola had been added as a DIY, and didn't have council approval, so the vendors had to take the property off the market until it was re-built to standard and approved.
It just seems silly to go to all that effort not to do it properly.
1 user(s) are reading this topic
0 members, 1 guests, 0 anonymous users
The workplace isn't always a friendly place for pregnant women. Yet working women inclined to conceal a pregnancy from prying coworkers may be better off opening up and carrying on, according to a new study.
To celebrate Mother's Day this year we are giving you the chance to win one of five great prizes simply by telling us your story.
There is so much pressure about having a baby who sleeps 'all night' , it's no wonder you worry about your baby if she wakes in the night.
What makes some names have comebacks while others silently fade into oblivion? A few factors come into play.
Dads can have many reasons for not wanting their partners to breastfeed their baby, but both parents should learn more about it before making a final decision.
Most new mums would recoil at the thought, but Sarah Stage has shared a post-pregnancy selfie just four days after giving birth.
If you're a new mum and feeling ignored by the older mum/the old hand/the has-been, please know, it's not you, it's me. Blame the last child parenting fatigue.
Having a new baby isn't tiring - it can be downright exhausting.
I was on a high. I'd done it all by myself with no help from anyone.
We're big fans of kids' birthday parties - but this is one bash we're glad we didn't get an invite to.
Everybody loves a bargain - including the Duchess of Cambridge.
A lengthy note put on the window of a fish & chip shop has gone viral due to the writer's serious doubts about the romance of travel.
Pregnant women are under pressure to do all the "right things" to have a healthy child. It results in women feeling judged about their decisions.
Giving your child a sibling when you don't want to have another baby can be a complex issue.
The mother of missing toddler William Tyrrell says she has a vision that somebody "picked him up and moved him on ... that's the only way ... to explain for him not to be there".
Most 23-year-old blokes spend their hard earned cash on fun times with mates or romantic dinners with their girlfriend, but not Tommy Connolly.
The first all-female quintuplets born in the United States were delivered last week, at 28 weeks and two days.
He may be less than a week old, but baby James Hunter has already helped his model mum silence her critics.
A recent Reddit thread has revealed some of the more creative names in the world.
A US woman awakened this week from a four-month-long coma that doctors had feared would be permanent and learned that she had given birth to a baby boy, according to her family.
Posting a lot of baby photos doesn't make you a bad person. It may make your Facebook feed a little irritating, but it doesn't make you a bad person.
It's time to shift the focus off what dads aren’t doing and shine it on what they are.
If you're only just joining the modern cloth nappy movement, or would like to spruce up your collection, we have to introduce you to Designer Bums.
When you’ve just had a baby, having sex isn’t usually top priority. In fact, for a lot of women it rates about as appealing as changing another dirty nappy.
Is it acceptable to use these car parking spots when pregnant? How many of us would admit to doing it?
Fertility doctors have described their "most extraordinary case" - creating a healthy baby from sperm taken 48 hours after a man had died.
Sign up to receive 30 amazing tips and ideas for play with baby during the month of April and submit a picture or tip on our social wall for a chance to win an amazing Fisher-Price prize pack.
You have less than a week left to win your child one of five Fisher-Price toy packs valued at over $600 each - hurry, enter today!
Let’s keep talking about these issues and not allow them to be put into a neat little box that’s labelled ‘Fix childcare and everything is solved’.
When trolls felt the need to comment on 35-year-old singer-songwriter Pink's weight, her answer was an awesome ode to body love.
A national chain of fertility clinics is offering egg donors a $5000 payment to cover their expenses, a first for Australia which is raising concerns the money could act as an inducement.
Australian officials could do nothing to stop an Australian couple from abandoning their baby son, born through surrogacy in India, after they decided they did not want to bring him to Australia.
Individual choice works for haircuts and handbags, but not for preventing infectious diseases that kill kids.
If there is one thing Leilani Rogers knows about childbirth, it is that no two deliveries are ever the same.
Note to self: less sewing, more life. Not the party dress, but the party. The toddler, as usual, has it all figured out.
In 1965, Zella Jackson-Price was told her premature baby girl had died shortly after birth.
New research suggests that taking specific pregnancy probiotics could be the answer to a range of common pregnancy side effects.
Announcing that you're expecting can be a time to express your creativity, sense of humour and imagination. Check out how other parents and parents-to-be have broken the news to friends and family.
Are you one of those that know the whole IKEA catalogue by heart? Love their stuff but want to personalise it? Here's some inspiration to help you realise the potential of IKEA furniture and fittings.
A French court may have ruled out Nutella as a baby name, but that doesn't have to stop you from taking inspiration from the supermarket (or bottle shop). See what parents in the US have chosen for their delicious little ones.
Last week to submit a picture of your baby at play for your chance to win. Visit the Play Wall to view our recent entries.