How To Convert Your Attic Into An Extra Room
The attic is generally considered the home’s temperature controller since it provides a large mass of air used for regulating temperature. Furthermore, this room is also used for storage in case you have items you rarely use. Because an attic usually has a non-uniform structure (due to being under a sloped roof), many people rarely use the attic as an extra room due to its inhospitable environment.
Nowadays, you may be surprised how converting the attic into a livable extra room is becoming a trend. Some homeowners have come to realize that you can still transform an inhospitable attic into a functional space. This is applicable, especially for homeowners with growing families and need extra space to accommodate the rising number of family members.
There are many ways you can reuse your attic. You can change it into an extra bedroom, living room, mini library, studio, or home office. Remaking your attic into a usable space will also significantly boost your property’s value. So, if you’re thinking of transforming your attic, here are some steps you’ll need to take to convert your attic into a habitable extra room.
Check If Your Attic Passes The Building Codes
Before clearing out your attic, you need to check if it passes your area’s local building codes, the same way the other rooms in the house had to meet these building requirements. Here are some of the most common building codes your attic must follow:
- It should have a full-sized, easily accessible staircase
- It should have a minimum of 70 sq. feet of available space
- It’s should have at least seven feet of horizontal clearance and seven feet of vertical clearance
- It has an accessible window that can double as an emergency exit
The most common issue with converting attics is failing to meet the minimal horizontal clearance. This means you may have to hire a professional to modify and increase the room’s height before converting it.
If you’re planning to alter your attic into an extra bedroom, but you’re having issues with the space, consider investing in a chest of drawers or double-duty furniture pieces to maximize the attic’s space and make room for other essential furniture.
Work On The Attic’s Heating And Ventilation Needs
Since you probably don’t have a full grasp of the heating and ventilation for attics, you should call in an expert to check your attic and let them figure out which option is preferable for regulating the attic’s temperature.
Most of the time, they’d require you to add ductwork or install another HVAC system. If both options are outside your budget, you can consider more affordable alternatives such as adding mini-split systems or baseboard heating.
Thoroughly Clean Your Attic
Now that your attic’s all good for its ventilation and space capacity, it’s time to clear out the area. Start by eliminating all the junk and boxes you’ve kept and dispose of those you no longer need.
If you still have some valuable things you need to store, you might need to move them somewhere else, such as in your basement. After decluttering, do a deep cleaning of the area to ensure all dust, dirt, mold, and cobwebs are totally out of sight.
Once you see your attic in a clean and sparkly state, it’ll be easier for you to plan how you will utilize the room and which furniture pieces you’d like to add. For example, if you’re transforming it into a bedroom, you can check out some bedside tables at RJ Living and other furniture stores and see which size or style will perfectly fit into the attic’s room aesthetic.
Hire An Electrician To Install Wirings
Of course, your attic wouldn’t be functional without proper lighting. You should ask a professional electrician for help and have them install the proper wiring for your room’s electricity. As much as possible, never attempt to DIY your electrical wirings, or you risk burning the whole house down with an electrical fire.
Furthermore, make sure you install enough outlets, depending on how you’re utilizing the room. If your attic will be used as a home office, you may need two to three outlets for your office devices and machines.
Insulate Your Attic
Before insulating the room, make sure to check the walls and roofs for any possible holes and leaks. Once you’ve covered and caulked these leaks or holes, you can insulate the room. Proper room insulation will protect your attic from damage caused by moisture and heat, especially since the attic is the closest area to the roof.
Finish Your Walls
After insulating the room, finish your walls by hanging drywall to add more shape to the attic. Secure the drywall with screws and cover them with drywall mud. For a more finished look, you may consider adding a dropped ceiling. However, this only depends if you still have enough space. Otherwise, if you’re trying to conserve space, then you might as well install drywalls directly into the ceiling.
Start Painting The Room
By the time you’ve finished the installation of drywall, your attic should begin looking like a real, habitable space. You can start painting the room to enhance its overall atmosphere. When choosing paint colors, go for lighter colors, especially if your attic has little access to natural light or has few windows.
To complete the transformation of your attic, finish your project by installing new flooring to the room. Most of the time, people would go for carpet flooring as it adds insulation to the room, plus it also muffles footsteps and other noises coming from above.
Enjoy Your New And Comfortable Attic
There you go! Now that you’ve successfully converted your attic into a cozy and livable room, it’s time to start decorating and move in some furniture. This time, you have the freedom to decorate and style your attic, depending on how you want the room to be used.