The Loft Room was started a couple of years ago in 2017 by two best friends: Rich Conlin and Paul Gibbs. But really, the story begins some years before when the guys were still at school…
Ever since the first meeting in Year 10, Rich and Paul have been inseparable. Even when Rich decided to undertake a job in the legal department at the age of 19, Paul soon persuaded him to learn carpentry like him and start doing lofts.
Together, they worked at one of Hampshire’s biggest loft conversion companies, where they quickly broke multiple records for 5* reviews and customer recommendations, before moving to and continuing to uphold the same high standards at another company.
Paul was subcontracting some of his work from this company, doing The Loft Room on his own at the time when he finally tempted Rich to join forces. Since then, they’ve quickly become the ones to beat and are well on their way to building the biggest loft conversion company in the south of England.
A homegrown business
There’s a real family feel at The Loft Room. In the office, you’ll find Rich’s mother-in-law Maggie and his wife Melissa, who deals with all the planning. Each of them has about 20 years’ experience in the loft business, having worked at some of the biggest conversion companies around. Rich’s sister-in-law also helps out with sales when needed.
As for Paul and Rich, the two of them are like brothers. They’ve gone through all of life’s journeys together — doing the same things, having children at the same time. Before they met their wives and settled down, they even travelled the West Coast of America in a convertible Mustang!
The company’s 11 teams are all homegrown too and never outsourced. Most of the apprentices are introduced to the business through friends and family before spending three or four years learning The Loft Room way and exact process. They then have to go through a thorough training scheme and gain extensive experience before being left to handle projects on their own.
From the start, Rich and Paul were keen to instil a sense of fun in the business and boost camaraderie with activities such as go-karting. They even set up a football team — Loft Room United — which plays to raise money for the children’s charity When You Wish Upon a Star.
A unique approach
Unlike most loft conversion companies which are owned by sales guys or business people, The Loft Room is owned and run by two carpenters. That’s the secret to keeping the flow going: if there’s a problem, they know exactly how to fix it and can squash it immediately. After all, they’ve been doing lofts for 20 plus years — so they know what they’re talking about.
Far from taking a traditional builder approach, the duo has seen a real gap in the market for a company that delivers what it promises, in budget and within the stated time schedule. For Paul and Rich, 5* reviews and recommendations are everything. Keeping clients happy is their number one priority, and they want every loft they build to be the envy of all the other houses on that street.
It’s no surprise then that after approximately 100 loft jobs, there is not one single client that isn’t happy with The Loft Room. In one year, the company has received 45 5* reviews, and most of the work (about 70%) now comes from recommendations — clearly, they’re doing something right!
Always looking ahead
They say if you find something you love, you’ll never work a day in your life. And that is exactly what Rich and Paul have done. They don’t mind getting up at 5am every day and going to work because they are passionate about being the best and making every single loft look ridiculously good. And they’re just getting started…
Although they’ve achieved so much in just a short space of time, these first two years are just the stepping stone to their ultimate goal. Over the next 10 years, Paul and Rich want to keep on delivering and doing what they do best. They want to continue smashing records, and most importantly, they want there to be absolutely no argument that The Loft Room is the best in the business. And if they can add a few awards to the mantlepiece along the way, all the better…