When considering adding space to your home, it’s easy to think of enclosing a porch, transforming a sunroom, or converting an attic or basement into a livable space. A great, often unthought of addition is a loft. A loft can give you that open concept you want while also adding extra space you can utilize in a number of ways. If you’re building a home, that’s the perfect time to think about adding a loft. You may still be able to add this space later, but it’s much, much easier to do before the house is finished.
Of course, if your home is only one story and has conventional eight or ten-foot ceilings, creating a loft isn’t really an option. On the other hand, if you have a two-story home or a space that has very tall, open ceilings, you have the perfect place to build in a loft.
Is your space capable of being converted into a loft? If it is, consider if you should you do it, and what could you use the space for. If you’re uncertain about converting your extra space into a loft, here are some things to keep in mind.
Do You Have the Space?
The first major factor to consider when putting in a loft is space. Talk to your contractor about where you want the loft and if it’s possible to put one there. It’s important to make certain the floor of the loft is high enough that it won’t impede traffic below it, but also make sure the loft ceiling is high enough for people to stand. You need to see if the space available is also worth building. In some cases, the loft you install may be so small it’s not practical.
In addition to the loft itself, you also have to consider that you may need space for support columns and space for the stairs leading up to the loft. You may find that the supports needed or the space required for the stairs takes away more from other rooms than you’d prefer. There are certain requirements all staircases must meet, and if it’s not possible in the space you’re considering, you won’t be able to add your loft.
What Can You Use Your Loft For?
If you do determine that you can modify the plans for your new home and install a loft in it, you next need to think about what you’ll use the space for. This can actually have an impact on how your loft is designed and built. You’re likely to want at least a few outlets in the space, but what about plumbing? Will you need any built-ins? What type of light fixtures will you want in the space, and do you want windows? What you’re using the space for will determine the answers to these questions. So what can you do with your loft?
One popular use for lofts these days is as a home office. This gives you a space that’s separate from the rest of your home. You can make certain all of your business stays in one area instead of making its way into your bedroom, dining room, or other space. Keeping your work contained not only keeps it from being spread across your entire house, but also creates a space that you associate with work. This way, when you’re in the loft, you’re in work mode.
Another loft option is to make the area a space for your kids. You can install a built-in desk for your kids to do their homework or for their computer. You could have space for them to read, including built-in bookshelves. You could even make the area into a space for the entire family to spend time playing games, studying, or readings together.
Speaking of reading, if you love books, your loft could become your own private library. You could have built-in shelves across all of the walls and a comfortable corner for you to sit and read. You may even be able to work with your contractor to arrange the loft so that you can take advantage of a huge amount of natural lighting during the day, making it the perfect place to curl up and read.
Crafting has become more and more popular in recent years. Whether you craft for fun or to make some side income on sites such as Etsy, having a dedicated craft space helps you keep everything organized. Your loft could become your crafting paradise. For this, you may want to see if you could add a sink to the loft so you can wash out brushes and other tools. You might also want to design built-in storage or even a built-in island to use in your crafts.
No matter what you use it for, a loft can be a great addition to your new home. There’s no better time to have a loft installed, so talk to your builder now if you’re thinking about adding one.