Gross internal area GIA
The area of a building can be measured in a number of different ways:
It is very important when describing the area of a building to be clear about which measure is being used, for example in planning applications, building regulation applications, property sales, lease negotiations, rating valuations and so on.
The UK government’s Valuation Office Agency (VOA) Code of measuring practice: definitions for rating purposes suggests that gross internal area includes:
- Areas occupied by internal walls (whether structural or not) and partitions.
- Service accommodation such as WCs, showers, and changing rooms.
- Columns, piers, whether free standing or projecting inwards from an external wall, chimney breasts, lift wells, stairwells and so on.
- Lift rooms, plant rooms, tank rooms, fuel stores, whether or not above roof level.
- Open-sided covered areas (should be stated separately).
Gross internal area excludes:
- Open balconies.
- Open fire escapes.
- Open-sided covered ways.
- Open vehicle parking areas, terraces and so on.
- Minor canopies.
- Any area with a ceiling height of less than 1.5m (except under stairways).
- Any area under the control of service or other external authorities.
The VOA code is in general agreement with RICS Guidance Note, A guide for Property Professionals, 6th Edition Code of measuring practice 2007, other than, areas with a headroom of less than 1.5m which are excluded from the VOA measurement.
 Related articles on Designing Buildings Wiki
- Beneficial occupation.
- Case notes for rating valuation (Garton V Hunter).
- Choice of method for rating valuation.
- Contractor’s basis for rating valuation.
- Floor area ratio.
- Gross external area.
- International Property Measurement Standards.
- Net internal area.
- Profits method of rating valuation.
- Rating valuation.
- Rental method of rating valuation.
- Statutory formulae for rating valuation.
- Total useful floor area.
Featured articles and news
We attended Peter Barber's keynote lecture discussing the role of the street in shaping the public life of the city.
What are the main changes and new provisions in the soon-to-be-published NEC4 supply contracts?
"It can feel like we’re never going to keep everybody happy". We spoke with CEO Sarah Beale about the tough challenges ahead for CITB.
Do you know your mono pitch from your purlin roof? Have a look at the different types of domestic roofs.
"The UK is lagging way behind China, India and the South Pacific" - Designing Buildings Wiki attended a discussion on smart cities.
BSRIA publish updated guide to mechanical building services systems.
Apple's new HQ opened to employees this week, and has been touted as 'the best office building in the world'.
The risk of moisture in hard-to-treat buildings.
Find out about the intricate art of pyrography.
Have a look at this newly-opened linear park on an elevated highway in Seoul.
The charity for the blind wants to encourage greater collaboration with built environment planners.
Read our review of a new book examining methods used to observe how sustainable buildings work in occupation.