Making the most of a Loft Space through Loft Conversions
Loft spaces and garages are two of the most highly used areas of any home. Unfortunately what they are used for is typical as a dumping ground for all the clutter you collect over the years.
Rarely are these spaces, especially loft and attic spaces, organised or being used to their potential. This is where loft conversions come into play!
Loft conversions (or attic conversions) can be used for several purposes, and can depend on the type and size of the loft space you have. Typical uses for a loft conversion include an extra bedroom, office space, play room or simply storage space.
“Storage space you say! But that’s what I’m using it for already.” Well sure that’s true, but there is a difference between a typical loft space and one that has fully boarded flooring, is well lit and has a sturdy loft ladder to get you in and out of it.
Turning your attic into a well structured storage space isn’t all that difficult, in its most basic form it would involve buying good solid attic boards, laying them correctly across the beams and affixing them firmly.
You can also get and install a range of ladders and loft hatches for them without too much hassle, they are readily available from most DIY shops.
Once you come to adding in lighting it can get trickier depending on your skills as an electrician, and typically we’d suggest letting a professional electrician do any lighting requirements. Alternately you could get a decent lamp such as an LED or halogen lamp that works on batteries, negating the need for wiring a light in; though it’s really best to get it done properly and not have to worry about it again.
So without too much hassle you have a storage area that you can now manage and arrange as require, sorting through old junk will be easier, as will storing any new belongings. You’d be amazed what a difference just these simple steps can achieve.
Now assuming you want to make the most of your loft space (and assuming as mentioned before it is of a decent size and a few other factors) then you might want something more like the aforementioned office or bedroom spaces instead.
Now you can do this yourself, but a loft conversion of this scale isn’t a simple task. Though essentially it is similar to before, there are a lot of other things you will need to do.
To start you’ll need more beams laying than a typical attic would have, to give more support, then you’re probably going to want floorboards rather than attic boards as attic boards aren’t really meant for continuous use.
You are also going to need more beams in the roof to strengthen that, and you’ll need beams removing if any are in the way as some lofts will have cross beams. The problem here is if those cross beams are to give support to the roof, can they be removed and replaced with beams in the roof sides?
Then you are going to have to overboard the sides of the roof (the walls of the rooms) and possibly plaster over them, or you might want to go for bricks here (a much trickier job).
Of course you need to ensure the electrics are wired in first and then there is the question of a window or two? Then what about stairs instead of a loft ladder?
As you can see without even touching on furnishings it’s a big job and one that I would recommend a professional loft conversion company undertakes for you. You’ll be paying a good deal of money for it, but it’ll look great, they will advise on the best way to go with any conversion and have all the tools and tradesmen to get it all done.
If you are still going to go ahead and do it yourself, then definitely seek professional advice before you even start. However if you are just want a much more organised storage space, then you should be fine doing it yourself.