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Need more space in your century home?…. look up!!

I love attics, a charming wonderful space which is a bonus feature in many century homes. This useable space can become a family room, playroom, office, studio, theatre room, guestroom or games room…whatever you desire.

Considering converting your attic? First step….check building codes and permits for your area. Have a professional check both the foundations and supporting walls of your home to make sure that they have the strength to carry the additional weight involved when using your attic or loft as viable living space. As well, have the floor of your attic checked to make sure that the floor joists are strong enough to support the new use of this floor.

Adding insulation in the wall systems of an older home can be challenging, but it is relatively easy and inexpensive in attic spaces.

Rustic wood ceiling beams are common in the century home, a wonderful feature to keep visible in your renovation project. Original floor boards could possibly be restored, another charming addition to your new space. In a former home, after lifting off glued on carpeting, hemlock floor boards were discovered. You never know what surprises lurk underneath.

Other considerations in an attic conversion are: fire doors, fire escape (consider portable escape ladders) , dormer windows, skylights, water pressure if adding plumbing, upgrades for attic wiring, ventilation/air flow, attic fan and consideration of solar heating.

Does your attic have a staircase…great! If not, folding attic stairs or spiral stairs are a consideration if space for installing a full staircase is limited.

Attics in a century home are full of charm with sloped ceilings and nooks and crannies….a great space waiting for your imagination. With careful planning you can have a wonderful new space to enjoy and possibly increase the value of your home.

Having owned century homes with useable attics, heating and cooling can be an issue. Attics will be very hot in the summer and very cold in the winter. Proper insulation is crucial. If duct work has not been extended to the attic for forced air heating/central air, electrical baseboard heating and portable AC units can be added, but another solution would be to investigate the installation of a ductless air conditioning/heat pump system.

Enjoy your attic!

Attic Stairs in Century Home: carpet removed, stripped and painted

Attic Stairs in Century Home: carpet removed, stripped and painted

Half of Attic converted to office/sewing room

Half of Attic converted to office/sewing room

Upper landing of attic staircase

Upper landing of attic staircase

Office/Sewing Room & day bed, with ceiling beams exposed and original hemlock floors refinished

Office/Sewing Room & day bed, with ceiling beams exposed and original hemlock floors refinished

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