Attic Conversion - What do I need to know.

bibboNovember 27, 2010

Mostly about Weight distribution.

At first we will only use this for only storage but down the line if appropriate we will use for living space.

Is there a place that I can find some basic info about weight distribution and anything else I might need to know.

Right now my joist are 2x4's and run perpendicular to my rafters. I was planning on popping 3/4' ply on the top.


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First of all, 2x4s are too small for joists of any type of living space. Even as storage space, with 3/4" flooring, it is probably under-strength.
This is not something that can be planned by a novice.
You'll need to have an engineer design the required structural modifications before you will be able to get a building permit for this project.

    Bookmark   November 27, 2010 at 4:59PM
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You can plan on losing some of the headroom that exists to be able to shore up the joists enough to support even storage. Most jurisdictions will not allow living space with less than 7' headroom. Do you have enough headroom to even do this without popping the roof?

    Bookmark   November 27, 2010 at 6:32PM
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No there is not 7feet of headroom. I understand that this not "Legal" but I am not really worried about that. Living space is really ways a way. if I go down that road I would find an engineer to look at it.

Storage space is really the main objective. I find it hard to believe that with 2x4's and 3/4" is NOT sufficient. I mean I stand on the rafters now and I am 200lbs. I know I know weight distribution over time is different than momentary impact.

What is the best way to shore up the joists to make them stronger?


    Bookmark   November 27, 2010 at 10:59PM
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As a homeowner who inherited some "ways away" space, please take the time to do it right the first time. We inherited an upstairs space (storage converted to living before we moved in). We had some water damage from a leaking toilet and ended up with a $30k+ remodel having to replace the joists with the appropriate ones and popping out dormers for adequate head-room.

It may stink to do it up front, but please take the time to do it right.

    Bookmark   November 28, 2010 at 9:20AM
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