DIY- Weekend Project Idea - Attic Storage Solutions
Increase your storage space
Are your closets overflowing with items that really don't need to be in them, such as seasonal items, mixed in with clothing and your everyday essentials?
Give your closets, garage and other storage areas a much needed break, by taking advantage of your attic space. The attic can be turned into storage space even if it does not have full size height.
Think of your attic as a walk in closet, that you have to bend over to get through, would you give up that space if you could get to it? I dont't think so.
There is a lot of space in the typical unused attic of most homes. This area is just wasted if you are not using it for your storage needs. Increase your storage space, and the value of your home when you make the attic usable.
You can remove items from your bedroom closets and under the bed, such as seasonal clothing, or decorations, sporting equipment, luggage and more.
Create access to your attic space
What do you do if you know you have space that your could be using in your attic, but you don't have a way to enter the attic? Or what if the current entrance is to small, or in an awkward location such as in a hall closet?
You create a new entrance into your attic, yourself, and start taking advantage of the storage space it offers.
Here are some tips and suggestions when adding steps to access your attic.
Early mornings, and cooler days are better for working in the attic, because of the heat
Determine the best location for the attic steps.
Usually a guest bedroom, or hallway is a good location.
Determine the direction of your roof joists.
It is much easier to install attic steps in the same direction as your roof joists, but don't let that stop you if you are desperate for more storage.
You can reinforce the roof joists if you must disturb them. (or contact a contractor to do that part of the project for you). Gaining the additional space is worth the work.
Purchase heavy duty steps that will hold up your weight and the weight of the items you are going to store.
Follow the manufacturers instructions carefully to install the steps, and watch the video below on Louisville Ladders.
Use extreme caution when working in the attic. There are nails in the roof that will be sharp and could cause head injury if you bump into them.
Add a floor to your attic. You cannot place items on the joists or on the ceiling of the house. It will cause damage to your home. Plywood is an inexpensive flooring material that works out great for an attic floor. Cut the 4x8 feet sheets in half to make them 2 x 8 feet. They will go through the attic opening easily this way. Use a circular saw to cut the plywood.
Start out with at least 5 sheets of plywood, to enable you to have enough usable attic space. If you want to floor the entire attic this will give you more storage space, and it will be easier than working around lots of items in the future.
Screw the floor down to the joists. Do not hammer, it is easier to remove a portion of the floor if needed later to get to electrical wires, and it does not disturb the insulation like hammering does.
Install a good light and a light switch, so you can see that you are doing, and what you are looking for in the attic.
Install an attic fan
Install an attic fan. Attics get very hot, to get relief from the heat, buy an attic fan and install it as instructed by the manufacture. (To much heat can damage your items that are in storage).
There are many models to choose from, just make sure you choose the right size for your attic square footage. They are not expensive and will also save money on your energy costs.
It is a good idea to add the fan when you do the project instead of waiting until later, to avoid problems with heat, and to make the installation easier, before you fill you attic space up with items you are storing.
Storing your items
The best part of this type of DIY project is the way your home will feel and function when you are able to actually use the attic space.
You can go through your home cleaning out closets and other storage areas and place the items that don't get daily use in the new attic storage area.
Discard any items that you don't need or use instead of storing them in your attic. This helps to keep the space neat, and can make you some extra money if you sell the items in a yard sale.
Holiday decorations can take up entire closets, so can travel items, sporting goods and other bulky items. Any of these items will be fine in the attic.
Make sure to use the proper storage units for your items. Plastic storage containers keep dust and moisture out of your items.
Be organized and neat with your attic storage, so it will be simple to locate what you need to find when you visit the attic.
Enjoy your new more spacious closets when you add access to your attic.
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