22 Sep

How much do roof lanterns cost?

“The bitterness of poor quality remains long after the sweetness of low price is forgotten” Benjamin Franklin

If you’ve visited our offices for a workshop tour, you may have noticed this quote by B. Franklin in our entrance hallway; Among other quotes that we all aim to embody day-to-day. However, this quotation, in particular, rings true for many home-improvement projects.

It’s in our nature to search for the best price when first approaching any home improvement project. None of us likes the feeling that we didn’t get the best value for money if we feel that we overpaid for a service or the gut-wrenching feeling that we went for a cheaper option and are now realising the consequences of cut corners and poor-quality materials.

So many of us seek somewhere in the middle, as a measure for value for money, but the more logical approach would be to remove cost as an indicator for value altogether. Rather seek to understand the products or service you’re buying and make an educated judgement on its value. After all, what is a roof lantern? Not only a magnificent visual addition to your home but also a roof over your head and your protection from the elements.

image of a borded roof lantern

How much does a roof lantern cost?

As with all markets – there will be products aimed at the lower price bracket, but the reality is, these will be products that lack critical design elements. Often being made from cheaper and lower-quality materials that possess shorter lifespans and will certainly need replacing within just a few years. In addition to containing flawed design decisions, derived from a lack of experience.

The price of a roof lantern will fluctuate depending on its size and shape.

A small square roof lantern of approximately 1200mm x 1200mm and fitted by us, can cost upwards of £5,000 – £6,000 excl. VAT.

On the other end of the scale, a rectangular 3000mm x 6000mm lantern fitted by us, may start from £21,250 – £28,000 excl. VAT.

Roof lanterns designed to an alternative shape such as octagonal and cupola are also likely to cost more than rectangular lanterns due to their more complex design.

octagonal and cupola roof lanterns cost more than traditional rectangular roof lanterns

The size will have the greatest impact when it comes to cost, and this is largely down to the increased amount of materials processed and used in its construction. Along with the added labour involved to manufacture your new roof lantern to our precise standards. But several optional extras may contribute to the total price of a roof lantern.

Extras such as roof vents, automatic thermostatic control boxes with rain sensors, and Westbury Sunguard will also contribute to increasing the price of your roof lantern. However, the added technology may not be necessary for all homes and all lanterns, so it’s important to discuss this with your designer to help find the best solution for your home.

the sky view from beneath a roof lantern

Building to a standard, not a budget

Roof lanterns are more than just a window, a source of light or a theatrical interior focal point. They are ultimately a roof, protecting the room below, and as such an integral part of the structure of your home, they must possess the same durability, insulation and protection from the weather as the rest of your home. As a minimum standard.

Unfortunately using the wrong materials and techniques to manufacture your roof lantern can result in movement of the timber, water ingress, and leaks over time. At Westbury, we have seen and replaced many inadequate structures built by others, that frustratingly do not meet the minimum requirements of their purpose.

So we refuse to cut corners and use inadequate materials to temporarily increase profits or sell larger quantities. We prefer to approach each project with the same care, attention, and exacting standards that have allowed us to remain a successful joinery business for over 33 years. Often, the value of our products can only be realised once you begin to understand all the component parts that go into making a roof lantern that will stand the test of time. This is why we believe in complete transparency. Encouraging all our clients to visit our workshop, ask as many questions as possible throughout their journey with us, and have unwavering trust and understanding in the products they are buying.

larger roof lanterns cost more money as they require more timber, glass and labour to build

Our Timber

Our aim is to consistently deliver high-performing, long-lasting products. So the choice to manufacture timber-framed roof lanterns using Accoya is the first step towards this goal. Accoya begins as PEFC and FSC certified Radiata Pine. These trees grow incredibly quickly reaching maturity after 10 years, making them an abundantly available and highly sustainable resource. In comparison, an Oak tree can take up to 100 years to reach maturity. The environmental benefits to using Accoya outweigh slow-growing hardwoods, woods treated with toxic chemicals, and non-renewable materials such as uPVC.

The Pine goes through a chemical modification process – acetylation - which changes the structure of the material and results in Accoya, a highly durable, lightweight and stable timber material.

Wood is made up of chemical groups called “free hydroxyls”. These are responsible for swelling and shrinkage in the wood as the free hydroxyl groups absorb water. The acetylation process alters the free hydroxyls within the wood into acetyl groups, altering the wood’s ability to absorb water, making it more dimensionally stable and protected from rot and decay.

A roof lantern in a kitchen

Our Glazing

Our glazing methods exceed the GGF (Glass & Glazing Federation) guidelines. But why is that important? Because a concerning number of cheaper alternatives on the market do not. This means that many homeowners are unknowingly relying on sub-par glazing to protect their homes, furnishings and families from the rain and cold weather.

Westbury roof lanterns are double-glazed with 4-16-4 toughened panes. These are filled with argon gas and sealed with a Low E coating as our standard. Ensuring optimal performance all year round. Our upgraded glazing with Sunguard lamination further reduces heat transmission, leading to energy savings down the line and ensures the room beneath the roof lantern maintains a consistent temperature throughout the year.

The Final Touches

Our decorative finials are made from a durable resin, which will not split or cause water ingress over time, offering unparalleled longevity.

The engineered timber sections are paired with high-spec double glazing and aluminium capping for a high-quality end product that looks beautiful functions exceptionally and is very low maintenance.