If you’re considering turning your attic into a bedroom, you’re not alone. In recent years, homeowners have been turning unused rooms in their homes into livable spaces to take advantage of the value this can add to a home. And an additional bedroom is a perfect way to get the most out of your attic space.
However, there are a few things you need to keep in mind when converting your attic into a bedroom. To begin, you need to ensure the room is well-insulated and update your HVAC system to include the loft (if it’s not possible, you’ll have to install a separate system). Moreover, you should inspect the structure (attics have often weaker floorings), ensure safe and comfortable access, and let in as much natural light as possible.
Join us as we go through more details below – only then will you be able to plan your renovation project appropriately.
Check the Attic’s Structure
When you decide to convert your attic into a bedroom, the first thing you need to do is to check the condition of the structure. This is important because most lofts are not designed to be living spaces, and, as such, they might not have the necessary support for extra weight.
Hire a professional to take a look at the joists and make sure they’re reinforced if necessary. Also, check for any water damage and replace any rotten wood. These structural elements need to be in good condition before you proceed with any other work.
Prioritise Natural Light
One of the best ways to make a small space feel bigger is by letting in natural light. If your attic has windows, great! But if not, you’ll need to install some.
Skylights are a popular option for attics because they let in a lot of light without taking up valuable floor space. You could also install a dormer window, which is a window that projects out from the slope of the roof. Fortunately, there is a wide selection of skylights and roof windows on the market – for example, OptiLight roof windows come with many customisation options, meaning that you will definitely find something suitable for your particular needs.
Another way to add light to an attic is with reflective materials. White paint on the walls and ceilings will help reflect light, making the space feel brighter. You could also use mirrors to reflect light and make the room feel larger.
Make Sure the Attic Is Well-Insulated
Attics are often one of the hottest parts of the house in the summer and one of the coldest in the winter. This makes insulation a must if you want to make your attic bedroom comfortable year-round.
There are a few different types of insulation you can choose from, but the most common is fibreglass batts. This type of insulation is easy to install and is available in different R-values, which is a measure of its ability to insulate. A higher R-value means better insulation.
Another option is spray foam insulation, which can be installed by a professional. This type of insulation is more expensive, but it’s also more effective. It’s also important to seal any gaps or cracks in the attic to prevent heat from escaping.
Upgrade or Install an HVAC System
Most homes only have one HVAC system that serves the entire house except for places like the attic, basement, or garage. But if you want to be comfortable in your loft bedroom, you’ll need to upgrade your system or install a separate one just for the attic.
Depending on the layout of your house, it might be possible to extend your existing HVAC system to the attic. But in many cases, it’s necessary to install a separate one. This is something you’ll need to discuss with a professional.
It’s also essential to make sure the ductwork in your attic is properly sealed. Leaks in the ductwork can lead to wasted energy and higher utility bills.
Install a Staircase or Ladder
In order to get to your attic bedroom, you’ll need some form of staircase or ladder. If your attic is large enough, a staircase is the best option because it’s more comfortable and safer to use.
But if your attic is small or if you have limited space, a ladder might be the better choice. There are different types of ladders you can choose from, including folding ladders and attic ladders. Attic ladders are designed specifically for accessing attics, and they usually come with built-in handrails for safety.
Whichever type of staircase or ladder you choose, ensure it’s appropriately installed and easy and safe to use.
Create a Floor Plan
Once you’ve taken care of the practical considerations, it’s time to start planning your attic bedroom. The first step is to create a floor plan.
This will help you figure out how to best use the space and what type of furniture you can include. It’s also a good idea to measure the windows and doors so you know what size furniture will fit in the space.
When creating your floor plan, remember that attic bedrooms often have sloped ceilings. This means you won’t be able to use standard-sized furniture. But there are a few ways you can work around this.
One option is to use custom-made furniture designed explicitly for attic bedrooms. Another option is to use smaller pieces of furniture or to arrange them in a way that allows you to still use the space, even with the sloped ceilings.
Because attic bedrooms are often located directly above the house’s living areas, it’s crucial to soundproof the space. This will help you avoid disturbing the people below, and it will also make your attic bedroom more private.
There are a few different ways you can soundproof an attic bedroom. One option is to use soundproofing materials like acoustic foam or soundproofing curtains. These materials will help absorb noise and reduce the amount of sound that escapes the room.
Another option is to install solid core doors. These doors are heavier and thicker than standard ones, making them better at blocking sound. You could also install weather stripping around the door to further reduce noise.
And finally, you could install the right flooring. A carpet is a good option because it absorbs sound. But if you prefer hardwood floors, you can install a floating floor. This type of flooring is not attached to the subfloor, which helps to reduce noise.
Converting your attic into a bedroom is a great way to add value to your home. But there are a few things you need to keep in mind when planning your project.
Make sure you check the condition of the attic’s structure and reinforce it if necessary. You should also prioritise natural light and make sure the attic is well-insulated. Upgrade or install an HVAC system and install a staircase or ladder. Creating a floor plan will help you figure out how to best use the space.
If you follow these tips, you’ll be well on your way to creating a comfortable and stylish bedroom. Just remember to take your time and to plan everything out carefully. And if you have any doubts, it’s always best to consult with a professional.