In times when living and building space is becoming increasingly scarce, people have to get creative again and find new solutions. That is one possibility. The other is to revive solutions that have already been tried and tested, but perhaps a little forgotten. And this certainly also applies to the dormer window. This roof structure has been part of buildings for a long time and – so the impression is – is now increasingly being used again to expand living space. In this article we look at this trend.
Different forms of dormers and general benefits
Dormers come in a variety of forms. Whether pointed or long, wide or narrow – there is a large selection here, with something for everyone. Of course, it is a bit easier to include them in the blueprints of a building from the start. However, they can also be installed later. At least, as long as there are no construction-related concerns and you get the green light from the building authority.
The great advantage of retrofitting dormer windows is that they expand the living space in a relatively uncomplicated and quick way. For example, top-floor apartments can be upgraded quite easily, which of course also increases their value (especially since top-floor apartments are currently becoming more and more popular anyway). In addition to the living space extension, a dormer also ensures that more light and air can get into the rooms.
There are roughly five categories of dormers: flat dormers, pointed and angular dormers, round dormers, trapezoidal dormers and so-called bat dormers. These categories are relatively self-explanatory and do not need to be explained in detail here. Which of these can be used in terms of construction depends heavily on the shape and construction of the roof. But personal taste certainly also plays a major role. Here you should simply inform yourself in detail in advance and think about what is important to you. Flat roof or trapezoidal dormers, for example, offer greater space advantages than pointed dormers, which have some restrictions due to the inclines. But of course they also look good. As far as the optics are concerned, one must note that the dormers significantly change the appearance of a building. If they stand out too much from the look of the surrounding buildings, installation may be prohibited.
Do you need a building permit??
If it was mentioned earlier that one had to get a “green light” from the building authority to erect a dormer window, then this must be restricted or specified more precisely at this point. Because, mind you, a building permit is not always required for dormer windows. Sometimes a notification procedure can be sufficient. The building regulations of the respective federal state are decisive here. You should therefore inquire in advance with the responsible building authority. Here you will be informed about any requirements, applications to be submitted and building plans. Dormers, which are available as prefabricated dormers, offer the advantage that construction plans or construction drawings are already available and approval and installation can be carried out quickly and easily.
The costs for a dormer window are comparatively low. A simple flat dormer window is available for around 3,000 euros. More elaborate models can also cost over 5,000 euros.