Everything you need to know about roof lanterns

Whether you’re toying with the idea of extending or simply wanting to boost the natural light in your home, chances are you’ve come across roof lanterns. Stylish aesthetics, both inside and out, roof lanterns can make a significant difference to the look of your home. 

At CTG Windows, we know all about roof lanterns thanks to our extensive experience with home renovations, including our roof lantern conservatory installations as well as our conservatory upgrades. With designs to suit every personal style, if you’re considering a roof lantern as part of your build, we’re here to tell you all about them.

Everything you need to know about roof lanterns

What is a roof lantern?

Simply put, a roof lantern is an architectural statement. Typically fitted to a flat or pitched roof to project above the roof, roof lanterns are often in the shape of a pyramid or crested elongated pyramid — which creates a stunning architectural showpiece in your home. 

Wooden-framed roof lanterns first became prominent in the Victorian era, but they have since made a comeback, becoming a recognisable feature in modern skylight installation. We often attribute roof lanterns’ increasing popularity in the past decade down to their ability to improve natural lighting and make spaces appear bigger by adding height to your interiors. 

Roof lanterns’ structures are made up of separate panes of glazing. You can recognise the appearance of roof lanterns by their use of glazing bars as a support structure for the glass panes which are visible from underneath.


What are the benefits of having a roof lantern?

In addition to more natural light and making your space appear bigger, roof lanterns offer many advantages. These include:

  • Reduced energy bills as you won’t need to light your room with electricity as much
  • Keeping your home warmer for longer, roof lanterns will help to improve thermal efficiency
  • You can add serious value to your house by adding such a stunning architectural feature. It will often turn into a key feature of your home, making it more desirable to potential buyers
  • Although we’ve already mentioned natural light, it’s good to repeat it since exposure to lots of natural lighting can seriously improve your health. Just a few examples include helping our bodies produce vitamin D, helping to keep us focused, making us happier!


Where can you add a roof lantern?

You will most often find roof lanterns fitted to flat or pitched roofs. Single storey extensions are the most common area for installation, specifically in larger open-plan spaces where natural light can’t be reached easily by its doors and windows. 

Whilst asking yourself where you can add a roof lantern, you should also ask where you can actually fit one. Preferably, think of a room in your house where you’d like to maximise the amount of light and, just as importantly, where can you show off your architectural feature to your guests the most? 

You will most likely find roof lanterns in a living room, kitchen, or extension, as extra light in these rooms is particularly useful for homeowners. You could also look into a lantern roof conservatory to add a unique and modern living space to your home. If you want to do something a little different, you can even install one in your bedroom — but we’d advise this for early risers only!


How much does it cost to install a roof lantern?

Roof lanterns come in all shapes and sizes meaning that the spectrum for pricing — both for the product and installation — is extremely varied. A lot of other factors, including the style of the roof lantern itself, will dictate how much is quoted for the installation. Generally speaking, the average roof lantern installation cost in the UK is £2,250.


What size roof lantern should I have?

Although it mostly depends on personal preference, there are a few things to bear in mind when choosing the size of your roof lantern;

  • It will effectively “shine a light” on the area directly below so be sure to choose a size that considers the overall room layout
  • You don’t need a roof lantern to span the length of your entire room. Smaller, less costly roof lanterns, can offer just as much brightness to your space
  • The rule of thumb to go by is that roof lanterns shouldn’t be much bigger than 15% of the room’s total floor area, even if it has few windows

No matter what shape or size, at CTG Windows, we can discuss your plans and ideal dimensions to pick the right one for you and your home.


Does a roof lantern need planning permission?

Planning permission is a question most homeowners will ponder when making home improvements to their property. Luckily, in most cases, you won’t need planning permission when it comes to roof lanterns. However, you must ensure the installation of your roof lantern adheres to the following permitted development rules:

  • Your roof lantern must not be any higher than the highest part of your roof
  • It must not protrude 150mm above the sloping plane of your existing roof
  • It has a side facing window that must be obscure glazed, and any openings must be 1.7m above the floor

Please note that the above applies to houses in the UK and rules for flats, maisonettes, and converted houses often differ.

Alternatively, just to be safe, we would advise contacting and checking with your local planning department for confirmation before you start any of your home renovations.


Your Roof Lantern Specialists in Cornwall

By choosing CTG Windows for your roof lantern project, we can help you realise your dream renovation ideas with our high-quality products and impeccable workmanship. Energy-efficient, stylish, and secure, all of our products go above and beyond to satisfy modern home improvement needs.

Let us help you get the most out of your house with roof lanterns by getting in contact with us today for a free no-obligation quote, or pop into your local Cornwall showroom for a stroll around our display!

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