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Guide To Buying Skylights

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Heather
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Heather

Everything you need to know before buying skylights

Last updated Friday 17 May 2019

Everything you need to know before buying skylights

Last updated Friday 17 May 2019

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When it comes to getting natural light into your home, who doesn’t love a good skylight? Compared to glass ceilings, they’re a cost effective way to get light penetrating all the way through your home. What’s more, as a permanent fixture, they can even help increase the price of your home.

However, because they require construction, getting skylights installed isn’t a quick DIY job, and there are some considerations you’ll need to make. Here we run through everything you’ll need to know to get the skylights of your dreams.

Planning permission

Luckily, because of permitted development rights, you won’t require planning permission to install skylights.

That being said, this doesn’t apply to every household. Permitted development rights don’t cover…

  • Flats and maisonettes
  • Converted houses or houses created through ‘change of use’
  • Areas where there may be planning conditions, such as conservation areas
  • Listed buildings

If you’re home isn’t covered by permitted development rights, you may still be able to install skylights, but will have to consult your local authority.

Which part of your property are you looking to extend or renovate?

Select an option below to get a quick quote for our services

Ground

Ground

First

First

Loft

Loft

Basement

Basement

Two storey

Two Storey

Garden

Garden

Building regulations

Because you’ll be altering your roof, you’ll generally need to prove you’ve followed building regulations in order to install skylights.

In order to show you’re within the UK’s building regulations, you’ll need to get approval from your local authority or you can use an approved inspector.

In order to be successful, you’ll need to demonstrate that your rooflights…

  • Are structurally sound
  • Have appropriate weather proofing
  • Enable your home’s ventilation requirements
  • Are appropriately energy efficient

Placement

Where you place your skylights is going to be one of your biggest considerations, and one you’ve probably already daydreamed about.

Ultimately, where you can place your skylights will be down to your roof and the type of skylights you choose (more on this later), but here are some things you might consider…

  • Many people who opt to add skylights to their bedroom want to install them over their bed. While this can be picturesque, think about how to stop the light from waking you prematurely, and how a blackout blind will affect the overall look.
  • If adding skylights to your kitchen, think about which areas use the most light. Perhaps you have a dark corner, or a worktop you’re using throughout the day. Adding skylights over practical areas can help cut bills, as you rely less on artificial light.
  • Remember that sunlight will damage your furniture overtime, fading any expensive fabrics. Therefore, it’s worth keeping your new skylights away from expensive living room furniture, or you might consider UV protective glazing.

Types of skylights

When it comes to skylight styles, there are many to choose from. You even have the option to get some custom made for your home - though this will cost more.

If you’re looking to explore your options, here are just a few styles of skylights you might consider:

skylight infographic final-01 copy

Getting the right glazing

One of the most important factors that you’ll need to consider is your glazing. What kind of glass will you invest in? And how will this affect your home?

It’s often tempting to keep costs to a minimum when improving your home, but investing in quality glazing is something you won’t regret. Cheap glass can create a greenhouse effect in your home, meaning you’re too hot in summer and too cold in winter. Not only will this make you uncomfortable, in those colder months, you’ll potentially see a spike in your energy bills, as you try to compensate for this heat loss.

How to avoid glazing disaster…

  • At minimum, consider investing in double glazing, to help you when the weather turns cold.
  • To help in summer, there's solar control smart glass. This will allow light to pass through, but stops the heating from following.
  • In order to gauge how much heat you’ll lose through your glass, look into the U-values. The higher your glazing U-values, the more heat it’ll let escape from your home.

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Share:

When it comes to getting natural light into your home, who doesn’t love a good skylight? Compared to glass ceilings, they’re a cost effective way to get light penetrating all the way through your home. What’s more, as a permanent fixture, they can even help increase the price of your home.

However, because they require construction, getting skylights installed isn’t a quick DIY job, and there are some considerations you’ll need to make. Here we run through everything you’ll need to know to get the skylights of your dreams.

Planning permission

Luckily, because of permitted development rights, you won’t require planning permission to install skylights.

That being said, this doesn’t apply to every household. Permitted development rights don’t cover…

  • Flats and maisonettes
  • Converted houses or houses created through ‘change of use’
  • Areas where there may be planning conditions, such as conservation areas
  • Listed buildings

If you’re home isn’t covered by permitted development rights, you may still be able to install skylights, but will have to consult your local authority.

Which part of your property are you looking to extend or renovate?

Select an option below to get a quick quote for our services

Ground

Ground

First

First

Loft

Loft

Basement

Basement

Two storey

Two Storey

Garden

Garden

Building regulations

Because you’ll be altering your roof, you’ll generally need to prove you’ve followed building regulations in order to install skylights.

In order to show you’re within the UK’s building regulations, you’ll need to get approval from your local authority or you can use an approved inspector.

In order to be successful, you’ll need to demonstrate that your rooflights…

  • Are structurally sound
  • Have appropriate weather proofing
  • Enable your home’s ventilation requirements
  • Are appropriately energy efficient

Placement

Where you place your skylights is going to be one of your biggest considerations, and one you’ve probably already daydreamed about.

Ultimately, where you can place your skylights will be down to your roof and the type of skylights you choose (more on this later), but here are some things you might consider…

  • Many people who opt to add skylights to their bedroom want to install them over their bed. While this can be picturesque, think about how to stop the light from waking you prematurely, and how a blackout blind will affect the overall look.
  • If adding skylights to your kitchen, think about which areas use the most light. Perhaps you have a dark corner, or a worktop you’re using throughout the day. Adding skylights over practical areas can help cut bills, as you rely less on artificial light.
  • Remember that sunlight will damage your furniture overtime, fading any expensive fabrics. Therefore, it’s worth keeping your new skylights away from expensive living room furniture, or you might consider UV protective glazing.

Types of skylights

When it comes to skylight styles, there are many to choose from. You even have the option to get some custom made for your home - though this will cost more.

If you’re looking to explore your options, here are just a few styles of skylights you might consider:

skylight infographic final-01 copy

Getting the right glazing

One of the most important factors that you’ll need to consider is your glazing. What kind of glass will you invest in? And how will this affect your home?

It’s often tempting to keep costs to a minimum when improving your home, but investing in quality glazing is something you won’t regret. Cheap glass can create a greenhouse effect in your home, meaning you’re too hot in summer and too cold in winter. Not only will this make you uncomfortable, in those colder months, you’ll potentially see a spike in your energy bills, as you try to compensate for this heat loss.

How to avoid glazing disaster…

  • At minimum, consider investing in double glazing, to help you when the weather turns cold.
  • To help in summer, there's solar control smart glass. This will allow light to pass through, but stops the heating from following.
  • In order to gauge how much heat you’ll lose through your glass, look into the U-values. The higher your glazing U-values, the more heat it’ll let escape from your home.
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