Suppose you’re considering adding a tiled roof to your conservatory to make and extra living space or add value to your home, well done! It’s a much cheaper option than getting an extension and turns unused rooms into functional areas.
However, we have to be transparent; it isn’t as simple as ringing a firm up and asking them to come and plonk a roof on the conservatory for you. Although this does happen – we’ll have more on that later.
Do You Need Building Regulations to Replace a Conservatory Roof?
It’s one of the most common questions, and we must distinguish what is meant by ‘building regulations’. When we’re building or adapting buildings, two phrases crop up – planning permission and building regulations.
Planning permission relates to the development of a building or structure. So, if you’re planning on building an extension – how will that impact the environment? How will it affect your neighbours? Are there any problems with the land or site that you should consider?
Building regulations set the standards for health and safety and apply to both new structures and any changes to an existing structure. Building regulations cover design, construction, fuel and power requirements and disabled access.
Let’s say you’re planning on building an extension – you’d need planning permission to ensure you can build the extension and it would have to follow building regulations.
If your conservatory already exists, you don’t need planning permission because you aren’t building anything. However, you do need to ensure your roof complies with building regulations. So yes, you need to consider building regulations on a conservatory, as well as any other adaptation to your home.
Why Bother With Building Regs?
Not everyone chooses to get building regulations for their conservatory roof, and prefer what we call wrap over roofs.
You should also be aware of the potential dangers of hiring a cowboy builder or looking for a quick fix in the shape of a ‘wrap over roof’. If you hear a builder mention this term, run in the opposite direction.
If you hire someone and you notice that the fitter isn’t removing your old roof, ask the question of why he isn’t removing it.
Supalite is now issuing all potential customers with a copy of the LABC produced ‘Viewpoint’ home-owner advice leaflet to ensure you are aware of potential dangers when buying a replacement roof for your conservatory.
The Dangers of Wrapover Roofs
Replacement tiled roofs for conservatories are a reasonably new product. As such, there’s a limit to the amount of information available to homeowners looking to replace their existing conservatory roof with a new tiled roof.
You need to be aware that there are product types in the market which don’t meet the necessary criteria – Steve Hacking, SupaLite Operations Director
We are talking about ‘wrap-over’ roofs – where an installer will wrap a new tiled roof over an existing conservatory roof installation. They look for all the world as good as a full replacement, but there are inherent potential faults in the installation from day one.
Wrapover Roofs Add to the Weight of the Structure
The original conservatory will carry a certain weight-loading for the roof. A ‘wrap-over’ roof installation adds to that weight – the conservatory has two roofs, and it was never designed to withstand that weight from a structural point of view.
Fitting a new roof on top of an existing structure is fraught with danger and is the roof solution most likely to cause over-stressing of the existing walls and in extreme circumstances can lead them to collapse.
Under Building Regulation guidelines all solid replacement roofs need approval from the appropriate council authorities, and this entails the provision of structural calculations to ensure that the new roof takes into the account the strength of the original conservatory.
SupaLite Spreading the Message
Suppliers such as ourselves must help to get the message out to home-owners who are considering going down this route. It’s not about Supalite – it’s about you, and using an independent third party home-owner leaflet to provide the information gives it total credibility.
The LABC has responsibility for ensuring that building regulations are met at all times with regards to solid replacement roofs, and we must give home-owners access to the information they provide.
What Are the Consequences of Ignoring Building Regulations?
As we’ve discussed, your conservatory could see considerable damage, but there are other consequences.
Your local authority has a right to enforce building regulations and will attempt to do this informally first. However, if your property has considerable damage, you may not be in a position to fix it.
If you don’t amend the installer’s errors, they could end up in a magistrates court under sections 35 and 35A of the Building Act 1984 – and prosecution could happen up to two years after installation.
Alternatively, the local authority may issue an enforcement notice which requires alterations to any work. If you don’t arrange the modifications, the authority has the power to do the work themselves and chase the costs from the owner. This is why it’s im[erative you get a Building Control Certificate.
There’s also the sale price of the house to consider, if you do not stick to building regulations this would be likely to show up on a local authority search damage your chances of a sale or a sale at the price you were expecting.
How to Get Building Control Certificate for Your Conservatory Roof With SupaLite
If you’re serious about getting a conservatory roof, you’ll need to ensure you get the necessary building regulations in place.
As you probably know, to put this through your local council building control department can be somewhat expensive and fees can exceed £400.
By taking the stress and uncertainty out of the situation, SupaLite can facilitate the complete Building Control Certification process on your behalf.
Here’s how to do it with SupaLite and your chosen installer – if you haven’t chosen your installer, use our search function.
1. Complete the Application Form
Start the process by completing one of our Building Control Information Sheet Forms and return it to SupaLite along with your roof order. We require a minimum of 10 days to process your application before work commences.
2. Take a Before Photo
We need at least one photograph of the conservatory before any work commences. It’s the responsibility of the installer to provide SupaLite with these photos.
3. Take a During Photo
We need at least one photograph during installation showing the insulation in place. It’s the responsibility of the installer to provide SupaLite with these photos.
4. Take An After Photo
We need at least one photograph of the completed roof conversion. It’s the responsibility of the installer to provide SupaLite with these photos.
5. Get Your Certificates
You will receive the following:
- Building Regulations Certificate
- Certificate of Authenticity
- A 10-year SupaLite Guarantee
A qualified surveyor will inspect all works to ensure compliance with the system approval certificate.
5 Benefits of Getting Your Building Control Certificate With SupaLite
- Quick Application – obtaining a building certificate for your solid conservatory roof could not be easier – submit your form, and we’ll do the rest.
- Headache-Free Process – we facilitate the whole process and take away the headache and stress.
- In-House Expertise – all applications are handled by our qualified in-house experts who have extensive knowledge of building regulations and certificates.
- Reputable Company – we’re a respected company that offers you complete reassurance by protecting your investment.
- National Coverage – we offer nationwide coverage throughout England & Wales.
How Do I Ensure My Conservatory Roof is Safe & Efficient?
The best way to ensure your roof is safe and efficient is to work with a certified manufacturer (SupaLite), a registered building regulations inspector (jhai) and one of SupaLite’s registered installers. That way, you know you’re getting a legitimate service from the start of the process right the way to the end, there’s no room for error. Whatever you do, don’t engage with a fitter who doesn’t have any of the right qualifications and wants to install a roof in top of your old one.
If you want to learn more about how we can help you with your application for a building control certificate, give us a call on 01772 828060, email us at email@example.com or hit the quote button below and fill out your details.