Attics have long had a bad reputation for being storage spaces for forgotten items and habitats for unwanted pests. Fortunately, modern homeowners are steering from that stereotype and transforming it into a more welcoming space.
While it may be exciting to start this project, you must also educate yourself about the room’s layout, the structural factors, and the relevant building regulations. You must also consider calling a residential insulation company to make it comfortable.
From measuring the area to letting a residential insulation company insulate your home, here are eight tips to transform your attic into a more comfortable living space.
1. Ensure You Have the Necessary Space
Before considering this home improvement project, you must see if you have the necessary space. Building codes require at least 70 square feet of floor space, seven-by-ten feet in each direction, and at least half of the available floor space must have a ceiling height of seven-and-a-half feet.
If your attic doesn’t reach the required height, raise the roofline or add a dormer window. You should also comply with the applicable building codes and regulations and acquire the relevant permits. However, if you’re working with a contractor, they’ll usually handle the paperwork.
2. Determine If You Have Roof Rafters or Trusses
Your roof’s framing can help determine if you can proceed with an attic conversion project. Contractors usually use rafters, leaving more space between the floor and ceiling.
On the other hand, roof trusses are popular because of their lower cost and higher versatility. However, trusses decrease an attic’s ceiling height, making it difficult to convert the space into a code-compliant living space.
3. Make Your Attic Accessible
Before transforming your attic into a living space, you must install accessible stairs and ensure it meets specific standards. They should be wide enough to fit furniture and other items, have a handrail, and have enough comfortable headroom.
Your attic access must be 36 inches wide, six feet, and eight inches high. It should also have ten-inch deep treads and risers of 7.25 inches.
4. Check Your Floors
Building an attic floor to support people requires reinforcing the existing floor joists with other boards or adding a subfloor. Depending on the house, this step will add height to the floor and could require a new set of stairs.
If you have an old home, you should check before proceeding with the project. However, if the house is relatively new, contractors may have already added finished flooring that can support people. Either way, it’s safe to check.
5. Consult a Structural Engineer
Attic improvements will significantly impact your house. For this reason, you should always exercise caution. Consulting a structural engineer can ensure other home parts’ safety and stability. This specialist will assess the potential impacts of your transformation project.
On the other hand, a contractor can help you determine which attic walls support the roof and ensure the modifications won’t damage them.
6. Set a Budget
Finishing your attic can be costly and have hidden expenses throughout the project. People usually spend $200 for every square foot to change an unfinished attic into a place that meets a living area’s legal standards. Converting an attic into a bedroom usually costs between $8,000 and $30,000.
7. Clean Your Attic
Inspect your attic for rodents, water leakage, or mould, and check your chimney and vents. You should also make the necessary repairs before converting the space.
8. Insulate Your Space
Working with a residential insulation company can make your attic more comfortable year-round. They’ll know what insulation best suits your needs.
Transforming a Misunderstood Space
Many people have long misunderstood attics as storage for old items. You can transform it into a more welcoming space by working with professional contractors, setting a budget, and calling a residential insulation company.
If you need a residential insulation company in Saskatoon, work with PolarTech Spray Foam! Our company provides professional insulation installation and removal services to help homeowners enjoy a more comfortable house. Contact us now, and let’s transform your attic into a more inviting room!