Can I change a flat roof into a pitched roof?

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Converting a roof is a pretty big task to take on. But will it be worth the time and effort? Flat roofs come with both their pros and cons, but sometimes the latter simply outweighs the former for some people. And that’s why many homeowners end up longing for a high-quality and reliable pitched roofing solution instead. However, if it’s a flat roof that’s already there, you may find yourself asking ‘can I change a flat roof into a pitched roof?’. When it comes to a roof’s construction, it’s not always set in stone. There are just a few things you should know about turning a flat roof into a pitched roof before you begin.

Why are you looking to convert?

One of the first things you need to consider before converting your flat roof into a pitched roof is the reasoning behind the transformation. Flat roofs can be prone to leakages, so if excess moisture is your main concern, you may be better off looking for a more durable, long-lasting EPDM roofing membrane. This is a much simpler, quicker and much more affordable alternative.

However, if it’s more of the aesthetics or structure you’re concerned about, it may be best to renew to a pitched roof instead. This shouldn’t be done without knowing the full benefits that simply renewing your flat roof can bring. There are a few ways in which you can go about the replacement, including:

  • Installing a shallow pitched roof over your existing flat roof
  • Adding a trussed style roof
  • Building a new floor and installing the pitched roof above that

The Existing Structure May Affect the Replacement

If you’ve looked at all your options and have decided that a conversion is the best option for you, you need to be aware of the fact that your roof’s existing design may interfere with any planned changes. Depending on how you choose to convert your roof may leave you with limited options. Look to contact an architect or structural engineer for assistance with what’s the best option for your property or building.

Complicated Roofing Systems

There are many instances with a flat-to-pitched roof conversion is a fairly simple job for someone who knows what they’re doing. Most projects will see a flat roof being turned into a pitched one by using a trussed roof with two angled planes. However, if you’re looking for something a little more abstract, you can have additional valleys, angles and gables built into the system.

Is planning permission required?

In most cases, a like-for-like replacement does not require any planning permission. Simply replacing your existing flat roof with a new one should be a pretty straightforward process. When converting your flat roof into a pitched roof, that’s when planning permission may come into play. A low-pitched roof should be easy enough to gain planning permission for. However, when carrying out larger structural alterations, this may be a little more difficult. Always contact your local planning authority to be sure.

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