How to Decide Between a Loft Conversion and a House Extension?

Have you ever found yourself in a position where you felt your home could do with some extra space? This is a common sentiment among homeowners, especially as families grow or work-from-home needs evolve. But the big question is, should you opt for a loft conversion or a house extension? With the Irish housing market and architectural landscape in mind, let’s delve into the nuances of both options to help you make the right decision.

Pros and Cons of Loft Conversions


No Land Required: Since loft conversions utilise existing space within the home, there’s no need for additional land.

Increase in Property Value: Loft conversions can significantly boost your property’s market value, making it a smart investment for the future.

Quick to Complete: Generally, a loft conversion can be finished faster than a house extension.

Minimal Disruption: Unlike house extensions, most of the work is done inside the house, causing less disruption to neighbours and daily life.


Limited Space: The space available for a loft conversion is constrained by the existing structure and design of the house.

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Potentially More Complex: Structural complexities can arise, especially in older homes.

Access Difficulties: Stairs to the loft might eat into the existing floor space.

A house extension involves expanding the current structure of your home outward, either to the side, back, or even front of your property. This could be in the form of a single-storey or multi-storey extension. With a house extension, the possibilities are vast – you could add a new kitchen, bedroom, living space, or even a conservatory.

House extensions, especially when executed well, can seamlessly integrate with the existing structure, offering a harmonious blend of the old and the new. If you’re considering a house extension in Ireland, it’s essential to factor in the available space, your budget, and the purpose of the extension.

Benefits and Limitations of House Extensions


More Flexible Design: Unlike loft conversions, with a house extension, you’re not restricted by the existing structure.

Larger Additional Space: Extensions often offer more substantial additional space than loft conversions.

Value Addition: A well-executed house extension can significantly enhance the value of your property.

Customisation: From materials to layout, you have the liberty to design the extension as per your preference.


Takes Longer to Complete: Construction of a house extension typically takes longer than a loft conversion.

Requires More Land: You’ll need additional land space to extend your property.

Potential for Disruption: Construction work can cause disruptions to your daily life and potentially upset neighbours.

More Expensive: Generally, extensions are costlier than loft conversions, given the additional materials and labour involved.

Cost Comparison: Loft Conversions vs. House Extensions

When deciding between a loft conversion and a house extension, the cost will inevitably play a significant role. Here’s a general cost breakdown for both:

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Loft Conversion

Costs can vary based on the complexity of the project. In Ireland, a basic loft conversion can start from €20,000, but for more complex designs or if structural changes are required, costs can escalate to €50,000 or more.

House Extension

The costs for house extensions largely depend on the size and type of extension. In Ireland, you can expect to pay anywhere from €1,500 to €2,500 per square metre. Therefore, a 20-square-metre extension might range from €30,000 to €50,000, while larger and more elaborate extensions can go well beyond that range.

Factors Influencing Your Choice

Choosing between a loft conversion and a house extension should not be a hasty decision. Several factors can influence your choice:

Available Space

Evaluate the available space in your property. If you have ample loft space that can be converted, a loft conversion might be more feasible. If your home has limited loft space or you require a more significant addition, a house extension could be the better choice.


Consider your budget carefully. Loft conversions are generally more cost-effective than house extensions, but this can vary depending on the project’s complexity and your location. Ensure you have a clear understanding of your financial capabilities.


Determine the primary purpose of your project. Are you looking to create an additional bedroom, a home office, or a larger living space? The intended use of the space can guide your decision.

Aesthetic Concerns

Think about how the addition will blend with your existing home. Some homeowners prefer the seamless integration of a house extension, while others appreciate the character and charm of a well-designed loft conversion.

Future Plans

Consider your long-term plans for the property. Will you be selling it in the near future, or is it your forever home? Understanding your future goals can help you make a more informed decision.

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Determine your desired timeframe for completing the project. Loft conversions tend to be quicker to complete, while house extensions can take longer due to their scale.

Ready to Transform Your Home? Contact Build Pro Today!

Deciding between a loft conversion and a house extension is a significant choice, one that can elevate your living space and property value. With careful consideration of your unique circumstances and the guidance of experts, you can embark on a home improvement project that aligns with your goals and vision. Whether you choose to expand upward or outward, remember that BuildPro is here to turn your dreams into reality. Contact us today, and let’s begin the journey of enhancing your Irish home. Your perfect space is just a call away.

Frequently Asked Questions

What factors should I consider when choosing between a loft conversion and a house extension?

Consider space, budget, intended use, aesthetics, long-term plans, and project timeline.

Do I need planning permission for both in Ireland?

Loft conversions may not always require it, but house extensions are more likely to. Check with local authorities or professionals.

Which is more cost-effective, a loft conversion or a house extension?

Generally, loft conversions are more cost-effective, but costs vary based on complexity and location.

How long do they take to complete?

Loft conversions are quicker due to less construction; house extensions take longer.

Will either option add property value?

Yes, both can add value when done well, enhancing functionality and aesthetics.

Are there specific building regulations in Ireland?

Yes, adhere to building regulations for safety, insulation, fire, and accessibility. Consult professionals for compliance.

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