Before you embark on finishing your attic, there are 7 Things to Think About Before You Start Finishing Your Attic. These steps will help ensure that the process goes smoothly and that you create a functional and comfortable space. Let’s take a closer look at the seven key things to think about before starting this project.
1. Clean Out Your Attic
Clean Out Your Attic: The first step is to clear out any unnecessary items from your attic. This includes removing old furniture, boxes, and other clutter. A clean slate will make it easier to plan and execute the renovation.
2. Wire the Attic for Electricity
Wire the Attic for Electricity: If you plan on using your attic as a living space or office, it’s crucial to wire it for electricity. Consult with an electrician to determine the best wiring layout and ensure that all electrical work is done safely and up to code. If you do the work yourself, you run the risk of electrical fires. As a rule of thumb, there should be at least one outlet on each wall and at least one outlet every 12 feet. Recessed LED fixtures are the best for attics since they can be tucked entirely out of the way, don’t generate unwanted heat, and can have insulation installed snugly and safely around them.
3. Build a Subfloor
3. Build a Subfloor: A sturdy subfloor is essential for creating a solid foundation in your attic space. This will provide stability, insulation, and soundproofing between floors. Start this process only once all electrical and ventilation installations are completed. If joists are visible on the floor of your attic, you will need to build a subfloor. To reduce sound traveling from your finished attic through the floor to the rest of the house, you can add insulation under the subfloor paneling or choose a thicker subfloor panel.
4. Insulate Your Attic
Insulate Your Attic: Proper insulation is vital in maintaining comfortable temperatures and energy efficiency in your finished attic. Consider different types of insulation materials and consult with professionals to determine the most suitable option for your specific needs. For a DIY project, the best insulation for an attic is batt insulation with a vapor-retardant facing. This insulation is excellent for finishing an attic because it is flexible and easy to install and can even be layered for additional coverage. Before installing the batts, caulk any spaces or leaks where air can pass to the rooms below. Staple the insulation into the joists as directed by the insulation manufacturer.
5. Install Ceiling
Install Ceiling: Installing a ceiling will not only enhance the aesthetics of your finished attic but also help with soundproofing and energy efficiency. Choose suitable materials such as drywall or ceiling tiles that meet fire safety regulations. Do not go with plain boring drywall for ceilings, try one of these unique ceiling finishes. Paneling with moldings is a luxurious touch for the space, tongue-and-groove panels are easy to install and will protect the low ceiling from dings and dents, or stained or left bare wood making a low-ceilinged attic feel snug and cozy.
6. Paint Walls
Paint Walls: Once the structural elements are in place, it’s time to add color and personality to your attic by painting the walls. Consider light colors to make the space feel larger or opt for bold hues for a more dramatic effect. New drywall will need to be primed before painting. After priming, add at least two coats of paint to give the drywall a finished appearance. If you use drywall on the ceiling, paint it before starting on the walls. When choosing colors for your attic room, consider lighter options, especially if the room has few windows and little natural light. A No-Fail Color Scheme is to paint the walls, ceilings, floors, and even furnishings in a light hue to tie together, making the attic feel more substantial and airier. Opt for warm whites, like ivory or cream, to avoid the sterile hospital look.
7. Choose and Install Attic Flooring
Choose and Install Attic Flooring: Selecting suitable flooring materials is crucial when finishing an attic space as it needs to withstand foot traffic while also providing proper insulation against noise transfer below. Options include hardwood, laminate, carpet tiles, or engineered wood flooring.
By carefully considering these seven aspects before starting to finish your attic, you can ensure that you create a functional, aesthetically pleasing living area that meets all necessary requirements for safety and comfort. Now that your attic is finished, move in furniture and décor to make the room the living space you always wanted. Enjoy decorating your newly converted attic!
Need Help or have questions about 7 Steps to Finishing an Attic? Contact Us online or give Us a call at 1 (503) 357-8810. From concept to completion, we provide full remodeling services. Let’s Build It!
Kurt Kopp is a dedicated professional with a commitment to excellence. He is a master builder with over 35 years of experience who strives to deliver the highest quality product to his valued customers.
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