Help please!! Converting garage into kitchen

(19 Posts)
whowherewhen Fri 15-Mar-13 09:42:45

Thanks for that - you've certainly helped to put my mind at rest. It sounds as though I can now leave the builder to sort it out!!

Bartlebee Thu 14-Mar-13 23:35:53

You pay either one or the other, not both. But I standby my earlier point that local authority building control is usually much cheaper.

Private inspectors are in it for profit, your council's building control is not allowed to make a profit by law, so is generally more competitive and happy to make as many inspections as you ask for. In my experience, private inspectors do as few inspections as they can for a high fee.

KarenHL Thu 14-Mar-13 22:38:26

Just spoke to the BCO I know, and he says that you should not be paying for professional fees and local authority fees together. He also says that the fees you have been quoted seem very high and that "If you use a private approved inspector then they do all the building control approval and not the Council. So no Local Authority fees are paid or chargeable."

I'm not saying you should go down the private route, but you might get a faster service, depending on your area.

Good luck with the conversion.

Potterer Thu 14-Mar-13 21:40:19

Just to add we paid around £300 for a double garage conversion, the building regs chap from the Council was lovely and very complimentary wink about our conversion.

We didn't just brick up the gap left by the garage door and put a window in, we matched size wise to the window on the other side of the front door so it really doesn't look like a garage conversion.

BCO came out 3 times, at the beginning, half way through and the very end to sign it all off. Your builder should be able to advise on all things conversion wise, I was never asked to make a decision about insulation I just said make it toasty grin

Sausagedog27 Thu 14-Mar-13 21:33:17

Cross posts!

Sausagedog27 Thu 14-Mar-13 21:33:04

I think she means a building control officer x

Bartlebee Thu 14-Mar-13 21:31:16

Building control officer!

I think garage conversions are a great way to add valuable space for comparatively little expense.

whowherewhen Thu 14-Mar-13 21:25:46

Many thanks for all your comments and help. Sorry Bartlebee what is a BCO. Anyway from your comment I'm pleased to see that the process seems much cheaper and more straightforward than I thought.

Bartlebee Thu 14-Mar-13 20:52:07

I am a BCO. I think we charge £270 for a garage conversion.

It is almost always much cheaper to use your local authority building control. Plus, unlike private approved inspectors, they are local, will inspect work on the same day the builder asks for it and are happy to give pre app advice.

Basically, you will have to make the garage comply with the regs for a habitable room. You'll have to upgrade the insulation to all elements, have correct ventilation and you might have to dig a foundation at the front or lintel across or if it's thick enough, build off the slab.

annalouiseh Thu 14-Mar-13 17:54:07

We were looking at a house to do that (we lost it)
but dh called the council and was £280 for permission (manchester)
they would then come and check each level of the convert.
they also said as we were insulating the walls and ceiling with kingspan (dot and dab like plasterboard and confirms to regs) and using electric underfloor heating on the underfloor heating insulation mats that we didnt not need to build a suspended floor as was enough insulation. We were told you don't need planning but you do have to go through the council so you have the correct insulation and for taking the garage door out and replacing with the window ( thats what the £280 was for if i can remember).
Dh was going to do all the work and material wise for a shell was about £1200 none plastered

ILikeBirds Thu 14-Mar-13 17:53:32

I'm a bit confused about your post when you say

"and had estimates for £650 and £700. Plus the charges from building control that's a total of £1200"

In this area the building regs fee would be £294 for conversion of a garage to a habitable room under a building notice.

whowherewhen Thu 14-Mar-13 17:50:19

Yes - so far for £4,600 but are in the process of getting a couple more

purplewithred Thu 14-Mar-13 17:36:40

yet!! yet!!!! not yer, yet!

purplewithred Thu 14-Mar-13 17:36:30

Your builder will probably deal with building control as part of the overall job. Have you got a quote from a builder yer?

ILikeBirds Thu 14-Mar-13 17:36:20

If £1200 is for the work plus the building regs fees that's very cheap.

KarenHL Thu 14-Mar-13 17:35:48

'Ouch', I can see your thinking. As I said though, I would try switchboard. From what I have seen in the Councils I have worked for, sometimes you are more likely to get a reply that way (& faster!).

Good luck.

whowherewhen Thu 14-Mar-13 17:29:44

To be honest KarenHL we have already contacted 2 'professionals' and had estimates for £650 and £700. Plus the charges from building control that's a total of £1200. I think you would agree that is a lot to pay out for rather a small job. So am trying to find a simpler, cheaper way.

KarenHL Thu 14-Mar-13 17:25:24

The building regs dept is often referred to as 'building control'. You do not have to do this through the council, but can use a private company if you wish.

It is worth telephoning the Council switchboard and asking to be put through, or if you PM me, I can give you number of a private company I know of (so you can get a quote, not so you are obliged!), that covers the whole country. If you gave me an idea of region/county, I might have a contact (no promises though).

If you have time, you could try dropping in to the Council - the one I used to work for had a drop in desk, and there was never a problem getting someone to come downstairs to answer questions. Don't do that if you are in a rush though, as on discussion you might find you have more questions than you first thought.

whowherewhen Thu 14-Mar-13 17:15:27

We have found out that we don't need planning permission but have got to contact building regs. department of local council. They in turn are supposed to give advice but haven't even replied to my email. Has anyone done this and knows what we have to do?? Help please - would be most grateful!!

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