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What Are the Different Types of Attic Solutions?

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  • Written By: Anna B. Smith
  • Edited By: O. Wallace
  • Last Modified Date: 29 March 2019
  • Copyright Protected:
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    Conjecture Corporation
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The different types of attic solutions include renovating the space into a living area, or improving its energy efficiency and storage capabilities. Turning an attic in a spare bedroom or office suite may require a great deal of skill and work, but it can increase the available living area square footage of a home and improve its overall market value. Smaller attics can also improve a home's value by reducing the energy costs required to maintain a comfortable temperature indoors. Energy efficient solutions are easy to install and provide an immediate payback to the homeowner, while additionally improving the safety of the area.

An attic can become an extended living area for the home, or it can be used as additional storage. Discovering the best functioning attic solutions for an existing home is often determined by the space available to work with. The homeowner should first consider the design of his attic, and then measure the height of the walls at both their lowest and highest points.

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A popular choice among attic solutions for those with growing families is to turn the space into a living area. This is typically best accomplished in homes with an A frame shape in which the outer walls connect to the ceiling at a 45 degree angle, which forms a peak in the center of the space. If the area is unfinished, which is likely, then insulation and drywall will need to be added to the space to make it livable. These additional materials should be added to the measurements of the wall heights before proceeding with the project. Most major home renovations require a building code inspection, which often includes a minimum height clearing for the highest point of the ceiling.

The interior work can be completed by a construction professional, or by homeowners with an intermediate to advanced knowledge of home repair. Attics are typically not wired for electricity or central heating and air, and will require additional wiring to add these amenities to the existing structure of the house. If the space is relatively small and will only be used as a spare bedroom, windows and bathroom fixtures may not be required. Some homes feature large attic spaces which run the full length and width of the home, and can accommodate multiple rooms and outdoor lighting. These added benefits typically require the skill of a contractor, and can add significant cost to the overall price of the remodel.

Homeowners who wish to improve the functionality of their attic, but who do not have the space to create a living area, may prefer to install energy efficient attic solutions. Proper insulation installed between the open rafters of the attic over the home's ceiling area can greatly reduce the energy costs needed to heat and cool the home throughout the year. Ventilation shafts that can be opened or closed easily by the homeowner can be installed along or below the roof line to allow hot air to escape from the attic and cool the home during the summer. Any electrical wiring that runs through this space should be encased in protective housing, whether rubber sheathing or plastic casing, to prevent hot lines from catching fire on exposed insulation. Due to the high risk of fire occurring in attics used as storage, items placed in this area long term ought also to be stored in plastic packing containers and plastic lined garment bags.

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