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Having an attic is lucky, and yet often the space is unused or used as a storage room. While by arranging the attic, you could take advantage of additional space, whether to optimize storage space or create new living rooms. Does the task seem insurmountable? There are certainly some checks and jobs to do, but the game is worth the effort. A converted attic is as much area saved!
Organize storage space in the attic
You probably already use your attic to store bulky items or things that you use little. In cardboard boxes, trunks or bags, your belongings take dust and humidity and often end up being forgotten there ... Why not arrange real storage? You will gain storage capacity and keep your clothes and objects in much better conditions. There is no need to embark on complicated work, but you must take into account the constraints of space: reduced height, structural elements, chimney flues, sub-slopes ... Simple shelves can do the trick, they can even be stepped or made to measure to follow the slope of the roof. Also think of dressers with deep drawers, low cabinets and handy stackable boxes to store children's toys or sports gear.
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Create a dressing room in your attic
Are your attic spaces mainly intended to accommodate seasonal clothing, ski gear or your shoe collection? Why not recreate a real wardrobe? It's ideal for storing your things in an organized way and finding them in the blink of an eye when you need them, ironed or folded and not crumpled up at the bottom of a box! The only condition to accommodate a dressing room, the attic must be well ventilated and have a lighting point. To create your dressing room you can use standard elements: boxes, wardrobes, drawers. Under a sub-slope think of taking advantage of the depth and adapt the height of the elements to optimize the available space. In an attic it is not essential that the dressing room is closed, especially since unless you opt for sliding doors, you will not necessarily have room for opening the doors. Do not hesitate to arrange your dressing room with boxes or baskets to store small items (tights, belts, beach items), and with specific storage for shoes, ties or scarves. You will increase the comfort of use of the dressing room and the lifespan of the clothes stored there.
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Is it possible to transform your attic into a living room?
Are you short of space at home and are you ready to carry out work to take advantage of the surface under the roofs? You can then consider transforming your attic into one or more living rooms. Be careful, however, the development of the attic is regulated and many points must be checked before embarking on a major renovation: ceiling height, legislation, budget, condition of the roof and solidity of the floor ... Leave nothing to chance before to undertake the work and check that your attic is suitable for the development of living rooms. *Legislation: Contact your town hall to find out the local rules governing the increase in living space. Depending on the surface and the extent of the work, you will need to file a prior declaration or a building permit application. Generally, you must apply for a building permit as soon as you increase your living area by more than 20m2 or change the exterior appearance of the house, but some PLUs (local urban plan) provide other rules . In a condominium, you must also have the approval of the property syndicate. *Height under slope: Below 1.80 m in height, the space under the ramp is not habitable. This means that you can consider using this surface for storage or sleeping, but not as a living and circulation space. Similarly, the ideal slope is at least 45 °. If it is less than 35 °, you may need to consider raising the roof, and therefore carrying out more important work. *Access: If your current attic is only accessible by a miller's ladder, you will need to build a real staircase. It can be straight if you have the necessary space on the lower floor, or helical (spiral). The latter makes it possible to limit the volume on the ground but it is less practical and inconvenient to mount bulky loads such as furniture or equipment to carry out the work. *Light: There are not often attic windows, or rarely large enough to properly light the room. You will therefore have to drill openings to provide the necessary lighting inside. It is considered that the glazed area must be at least 1/6 of the living area. You have the choice between classic windows or roof windows, which you can equip with roller shutters to avoid overheating in summer. Ideally, prefer several openings to be able to ventilate the room more easily. *Budget:Evaluate or have evaluated by a professional the total cost of the attic conversion work. A damaged roof will have to be replaced, it may be necessary to consolidate the ground and reinforce its structure to support the weight of the installations, the furniture and the people; it will also be necessary to insulate the attic, install a heating system, possibly raise the roof or partition the space ... Do not neglect any aspect before embarking on this substantial project.
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What room to live in my attic?
If you can arrange your attic as you wish, some functions lend themselves better than others to the constraints of an attic space. * An attic bedroom: You can easily install a guest bedroom in the attic. Such a room does not require much light and can be satisfied with a reduced ceiling height. The bed can even be accommodated where it does not exceed 1.50m, in the lowest part. In a children's room, the downhill slope will not be too annoying, but remember that you will still have to move around (to make the bed, read a story, etc.). * A perched lounge: You can completely recreate a lounge in the attic. Take advantage of the lower areas to install storage, a sofa or even a low bookcase that will accommodate books and DVDs for the whole family without cluttering the other rooms. The attic is also the right place to install a games room or a family room, this relaxation space dedicated to the leisure of the whole family. Well soundproofed, you can also find a music room there. * A quiet office: Take advantage of the isolation of the attic to create a work space! Sitting at a computer, notebook or easel if you like to paint, you don't need a lot of height. The under-crawl space can be used to store your work equipment, your office supplies or all the important papers of the house which quickly take up space in a living room. * And even a bathroom! : Fitting out a bathroom in an attic requires significant work to install a hydraulic system, an evacuation, suitable ventilation ... However, if you start, be aware that a shower requires a ceiling height of at least 2 m. On the contrary, a bathtub can be satisfied with a limited height, but you will have to take into account the weight of the full bathtub, which may require strengthening the floor.
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