An attic provides fantastic opportunities for home expansion. In fact, a growing number of homeowners are converting unused loft space into beautiful bathrooms.
While an attic is certainly is not the easiest area to design and renovate due to its unique shape and location, a well-built attic bathroom will pay off in the end. Apart from bringing in additional living space, a loft bathroom adds instant appeal and value to your home.
We’re not going to lie; there are several challenges to remodeling an attic. To give you a realistic idea, our team of attic insulation contractors have compiled below the common challenges homeowners face when building an attic bathroom.
Deciding on your bathroom placement can be particularly challenging if you have a unique roof that slopes down on two, three, or even all four sides.
Attic bathrooms are commonly built closer to the center of the house, since this is also where the ceiling is at its highest. Although doing so would make the remaining attic space less accessible.
On the other hand, bathrooms situated on the edges of your attic can have windows. The only downside to this option is the possibility of the roof slanting all the way down to the floor.
Technical and internal fixtures including electrical systems, plumbing systems, water supply lines, drainage lines, sewer line, and vent stack are also important factors to consider when positioning your bathroom.
Ideally, an attic bathroom should be built above an existing bathroom or your kitchen to reduce the distance between the existing plumbing lines and the new installations. This could cut down costs and minimize required wall damage. Additional drain and supply lines should also run all the way to the crawl space or basement to ensure sewer gases are completely expelled.
One of the first steps to building your bathroom is to secure the right permits. Attic remodels of any type must follow local building codes to ensure compliance with safety standards. Similarly, any type of bathroom work also entails code restrictions and permit applications.
It may seem like a hassle at first but meeting these requirements will save you time, money, and trouble in the long run. Building codes vary for every place so it’s best to clarify all the details first with your local permitting office before proceeding to construction.
Most attic floors are not built to hold extreme weight consistently. Bathtubs, sinks, shower stalls, and toilet bowls are all heavy bathroom fixtures that can easily put a strain on an already delicate attic floor.
For better structural support, contractors use floor joists. They use a joint span table to identify the amount of extra support your new bathroom needs. Don’t wait for you bathtub to crash through the floor, before ensuring your floor joists are strong, secure, and disaster-ready.
Transporting materials to the construction site
Most attic doorways are small, so transporting heavy materials to the construction site may pose a bit of a problem. The only way to solve this is to take complete and accurate measurements of your attic space and your chosen fixtures. Measure your halls, stairs, doorways, and other surfaces the materials would come in contact with. In some cases, contractors would advise enlarging the attic entrance to begin the project.
While we all know shopping for fixtures is one of the best parts of home renovation, remember to buy only those that can realistically fit in your space. There are many attic-friendly fittings available in the market like shower-tub combos and compact toilets. A fiberglass claw-foot tub, for example, is a lighter and more portable type than most tubs. It is also designed to achieve a smaller footprint. To ensure a perfect fit, you can always opt for custom-made fixtures.
Heat either travels up through your ceiling or escapes from leaks or gaps in your attic. This is why attics can get extremely hot in the summer and extremely cold in the winter.
Investing in attic insulation ensures consistent comfort and energy efficiency. One of the best options for attics is the spray-foam roof insulation which forms a tight air barrier that fills every space and does not settle or sag. It also does not consume a lot of space, providing your bathroom with more headroom.
You can also install a ceiling fan in the bathroom to increase airflow in warmer months or an exhaust fan to reduce the moisture in the room. For budget-friendly sound-proofing solutions, simply apply dense blown-in insulation to the bays.
Clutter and lack of space
One of the biggest challenges to any attic project is space. Thankfully, there are design hacks that can make a room feel large and airy.
It may seem like an old design trick, but painting your bathroom white or a lighter color can make the smallest rooms feel open and spacious. White surfaces are reflective and allow light to bounce all around the room.
Bathroom windows easily give an illusion of extra space. A dormer window, for example can create even more headroom while allowing light to filter through. A skylight is also a great way to invite light in and dehumidify the room.
Like wall-length mirrors, glass doors and other reflective surfaces create the illusion of expanding a room’s size. Sliding doors and shelves can also save space as the don’t have to swing into the room’s main area.
Adopting the corner furniture technique is a great way to save on bathroom floor space. It simply involves moving your main furniture pieces in the corners of the room to achieve more space in the middle. Installing wall-mounted bathroom fixtures is another option to clear up floor space and provide your bathroom with a smart, modern, and minimalist touch.
Clutter can make any room feel small, cramped, and untidy. Mirrored vanity units and wall mounted shelves are smart ways to store toiletries and maximize space. Recessed shelving is also a clean trick to store soaps and shampoos. Removing clutter from your bathroom produces a more relaxed and soothing ambiance.
Stylish and comfortable attic bathrooms
A well-planned and insulated attic bathroom can create additional living space and increase the resale value of your home. At A+ Insulation, we can provide your attic bathroom with superior comfort and insulation at cost-efficient rates. We are proud to be the leading premium insulation provider in Kansas city since 2004. Rest assured, our certified technicians consistently follow industry-leading practices that meet state and local building mandates. Insulation is what we know and do best, but customer service is at the heart of our practices.
Call us at (913) 281-2250 to schedule a free no-obligation energy evaluation.