Attic Remodeling - Ideas and Planning

Attic ventialtion and insulation

Attic remodeling

Attic remodeling is a great way of making the best use of your roofspace. So many of us see the attic as a no-go zone; it's somewhere to dump Christmas decorations, old toys and the furniture we don't use any more. However, many people are seeing the potential of the attic and converting it into extra living space.

DIY ideas for attic remodeling

There are many uses for the new space created under your roof. If you work from home, the attic makes a great office - you're quite literally above the distractions. Some people see the attic as a kind of indoor tree-house, somewhere for the children to play without the mess spreading to the rest of the house. There are plenty of other uses for the attic space - it could also be an extra bedroom, an upstairs living room or a workshop for crafts.

When you're choosing a theme for your remodeled attic, think about what attics mean to different people. Many people choose a Scandinavian theme for their attic remodeling, with skylight windows and wood paneling. But that doesn't mean you have to follow the herd. The traditional place for a poet is in a garret, so why not give your attic an arty look? Apply the bohemian ethos when you're getting accessories. That means scouring junkyard and jumble sales for the perfect item. To take the look to its extreme, why not decorate the walls with lettering? Use a gold pen or gold paint and a thin paintbrush to write your favorite poetic quotations on the walls. (It's best to write the outlines in pencil first in case you make a mistake.)

Another neat DIY idea is to take inspiration from being close to the sky. Choose a sky-blue color scheme and have clouds on the wallpaper. If the room is a kids' playroom, perhaps an airplane frieze would be fun too.

Attic remodeling: insulation

Insulation is vital for making your attic room into a comfortable space. It will also save you a lot of money in heating or air conditioning bills. Your first step is to check your existing insulation for gaps. Then you can cover the areas not already insulated.

Fiber glass is one of the most widely used insulation materials for attics and easy to install if you're doing a DIY makeover. If you're insulating around a heat source, make sure you use unfaced fiberglass, as the paper facing on most fiberglass is flammable. Otherwise, use paper-faced fiberglass, because it's a good vapor barrier. If you're laying the insulation yourself, you should cover your body as completely as possible. That means long sleeves, long pants and a hood. Fiberglass is an irritant, so don't let it make contact with your skin. You should also wear a dust mask, goggles and gloves.

When you've laid your insulation on the floor, you should also install it in the walls and ceiling of the attic room, if possible. Then you're ready to install the drywall, which is a board that will make the interior walls of the attic. The drywall (also known as wallboard and sheetrock) can be made from plywood or gypsum.

Attic remodeling: ventilation

The flipside of insulation is ventilation. Although you don't want to lose all your heat from the attic, you want to keep air flowing through it. Insulation and ventilation work together to stop the attic becoming damp. Most ventilation systems involve drilling holes between each rafter to the outside of the house. Then you install soffit ventilation plugs. ("Soffit" is just another word for the underside of the eaves.) These are plugs to keep insects out while letting air in.

Once your attic is properly insulated and ventilated, you're well on the way to putting your design ideas into practice. The only problem is finding somewhere new to put the Christmas decorations


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