Wondering how much it costs to board and insulate a loft? Our guide to loft insulation and boarding in 2022 outlines the various factors that need to be considered and the costs involved.
Without proper loft insulation and boarding, your loft is an energy wasting and potentially dangerous space. A quarter of the heat is lost in an uninsulated home through the loft. This means wasted energy and wasted money. Correctly insulating and boarding your loft will reduce energy bills, retain heat in the home and reduce your homes overall carbon footprint.
This guide will give you an overview of the decisions and costs involved in making your loft an energy-efficient, safe and useful space.
Choosing Your Insulation
There are various types of loft insulation available, the correct one for you depends on your needs and budget.
Blanket or Quilt Insulation
Blanket or quilt insulation is bought in rolls and is the most common (and generally the most cost effective) method of insulating a loft. Quilt insulation can be made from mineral wool, rock wool or even natural sheep wool. It is simply rolled out between and across the ceiling joists or roof trusses to create an efficient thermal barrier. Current UK building regulations recommend a depth of 270mm. As it is simple to install it can easily be carried out as a DIY job without needing a professional installer.
Loose fill insulation is bought in bags and the contents simply emptied, broken up and spread evenly into the loft space. It is simple to install but due to it being a loose solution the fibres can move around over time. This can be problematic in draughty lofts and near the loft hatch if it is used a lot.
Sheet insulation or Polyisocyanurate Insulated Boards (PIR) are rigid insulation boards typically used to insulate the roof rather than the loft floor. This creates a warm loft meaning the temperature of the loft space is similar to the house below. The advantage of these solutions is that they are very thermally efficient and therefore require less depth than quilt or loose fill options. The downside is that this is one of the most expensive methods of insulating a loft.
Spray Foam Insulation
Spray foam insulation is a layer of foam that is professionally installed to the underside of the roof. It is very quick to install and creates a continuous, effective thermal barrier. The downsides to this solution are that is can restrict ventilation in a loft which in turn could lead to damp or condensation issues. Some mortgage companies and equity release lenders have issues when reviewing properties with spray foam insulation.
Loft Insulation Costs
Here are some estimates for the different insulation options based on materials only:
Estimates based on a 25M² Area
Glass Wool - £250
Rock Wool - £265
Sheep's Wool - £750
Loose-Fill - £500
Sheet Insulation - £750-915
Spray Foam - £875 (materials only) Labour £250/day
Estimates taken from Checkatrade.
Boarding Your Loft
Once insulated, and if you plan to use your loft for storage or you need access to equipment located in the loft then you will need to board it. If you are using blanket, quilt or loose fill insulation make sure you don’t compromise the insulation by squashing it as this can reduce its thermal performance by over 50%.
Loft Legs are used to raise the loft boards above the insulation to ensure it is not compromised.
Loft boards typically come in two sizes 320mm x 1200mm and larger boards measuring 600mm x 2400mm for bigger spaces. The decision here is driven by the size of your loft hatch.
Chipboard or OSB are both suitable flooring materials and can be bought in 18mm or 22mm thicknesses.
Once you decide whether you're boarding the entire loft or just a small space for storage or access, you can purchase the correct number of boards.
Do It Yourself vs Professional Installation
You can insulate and board the loft yourself if you have some basic DIY skills, an easily accessible loft and don't have any moisture issues. In cases where complex insulation systems are required, or if you have damp problems, a professional installation is the way to go.
Loft Boarding Costs Based on Area
The average costs of having your loft boarded by a professional installer may range depending on the type of loft you have. Joist and rafter lofts offer more flexibility as they are often open spaces. Trussed lofts involve more work notching the boards and tend to have restricted floor space.
Estimates by Area
· 15 m² - £1,100-£1,500
· 20 m² - £1,500-£1,800
· 30 m² - £2,350-£2,500
· 40 m² - £3,000-£3,250
Estimates taken from Checkatrade.
Don't Forget the Extras
Making your loft a useable space can often require a few extras beyond flooring and insulation. Consider widening the hatch and adding a new ladder if your loft isn't as accessible as you'd like it to be. Adding lights, electrics, and storage shelves are three popular add-ons that can turn a once dark and uninviting space into a practical one.
Attic Insulation Savings
Insulating and boarding your attic can increase the value of your home by up to 16% and can generate annual energy savings of up to £580 per year. The work can more than pay for itself in the first few years.
Get Ready to Enjoy Your New Usable Energy Efficient Loft
With all of the costs in mind, it's time to plan your new energy-efficient space. To transform your dingy unused loft into a vibrant living area or functional storage space, we have everything you need. Contact us today to add value and usability to your home and start saving on energy costs.