Our house is a standard 2-up 2-down terrace (well, end terrace) with the usual kitchen / bathroom extension on the back done many years ago.

Beside the kitchen, in the gap between our kitchen and the neighbours, is currently a temporary style utility room - single brick course low height wall, uPVC windows and some form of sheet plastic slightly-pitched roof. I want to knock this down and rebuild properly with a flat roof design and also knock out some walls, involving RSJs, to open the kitchen up a little.

I also have a very similarly constructed front porch that I would like to slightly enlarge and build properly with better insulation and a stronger front door. The roof on this would be pitched.

My question: proper planning is going to be required, but do I need the services of a structural engineer or an architect in order to draw up the plans? These plans would then be presented for any planning permission and also to builders for quoting.

I could be confusing the roles a little, I am assuming SEs do drawings and I'm assuming the job is a little basic for an architect (after all, I'm not after anything adventurous - the end result will look very similar to what is currently there). But in either situation, I need proper calculations doing as removing the walls impacts a double-course outer wall and the utility currently has limited-to-no foundations.


1 Answer 1


At least in the USA both architects and structural engineers will do this type of work. Not all architects will want this small of a job (but you may be surprised how many will) and not all structural engineers will want to draw up plans. Basically you are on the right track; I would just call around to the architects and structural engineers in your area and talk to them about the job.

I have used a structural engineer in the past but I did not have him draw up plans (it would have cost more). He come out and looked at the situation and wrote a report on what was needed. However my job was even smaller than what you are discussing. I would start with local architecture firms and see if they will do what you need, if they don't want the work they may refer you to a local structural engineer.

The important thing is that you get plans created by (or at least signed off by) a certified architect/engineer. This should make getting a permit really easy and you will know you are doing the remodel in the right way.

  • +1 Thanks for the reply. I'm guessing the job role doesn't differ too much across the pond. I'll be ringing local firms tomorrow. Commented Jun 7, 2012 at 16:27

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