You can only look so far ahead when you purchase a home. It’s impossible to tell when a new baby might become an unexpected family addition and for many families, the home they bought isn’t big enough a few years later once there are more people living in it.
If you find your home just doesn’t have enough space for the number of people living in it, you have a few choices. Moving to a new house seems a ridiculous step to take when you could just improve the existing home.
Rather than building out and taking up more land, your best bet then would probably be to build upward and into your attic. It’s actually pretty easy to make your attic a spare room which is as safe as the rest of the house.
Utilize that Utility Space
The whole attic doesn’t need to be converted if half, a third or even less of the space would suffice for a new room with enough room.
If your home is one of those with the octopus-like ceiling heaters, you especially will not want to get rid of all the stuff in your attic just for another room.
The idea is to get more out of the space you already have, not butcher it so badly your home actually loses value or becomes less of a nice place to live.
Once you know how much stuff you’ll need, get all the lumber and carpeting or other flooring you will need for your new additional room. This is the most expensive part of the process and there’s no going back after putting down the money on the materials; good luck getting a refund from a home improvement store if you merely changed your mind and don’t want to do the job anymore.
Basically, don’t make the purchasing step until you’re positive you will follow through with the rest of the project.
Odds are good the flooring will be we in some places and not at all safe so that’s the first place to start work. Put down flooring or boards in your attic to make a safe, stable surface on which you can place the rest of the spare room. Building up from the bottom is just common construction sense; don’t even think about putting off the floors until the last minute.
You may need to redo other parts of the project if the floor is bad so there are many reasons to get it out of the way right away.
Don’t Forget Safety
You must be safe while you do all this construction. The finished product must also be something that’s safe to sleep on, walk around in and more. Leave no rough edges behind by the time you declare yourself done; every new piece of wood and probably some of the old ones will all need to be sanded down to flat, even and smooth surfaces.
If you can help it, try and get a professional to come and install the electrical work. This is not a job for amateurs and you can’t in good conscience possibly think it’s a good idea for someone inexperienced to work with hundreds or thousands of volts. Following these steps will lead to a safe spare room, put together in a safe way.
Richard Sibbes is a licensed contractor who likes to use Quokka Doors from quokkadoors.com.au and teach people the correct way to install them. He is also a budding freelance writer who contributes regularly to several home improvement websites.