If you are looking for a great way to add functional space to your home, you may be taking a closer look at some of the unused areas of the home. Converting a loft or a basement may both be more cost-effective options for you than adding a new room or wing onto your home. This is because you are finishing out existing space rather than building new space. In some cases, you may only have one of these spaces in your home, and you may not need to choose between an attic loft conversion or a basement conversion. When you do have the choice, however, you may need to consider a few points to make a better decision.
The Availability and Accessibility of Space
As a first step, carefully inspect both of the areas, focusing on factors like how much usable space is available and how accessible the space actually is. Of course, staircases can be constructed, but these will add on to the cost of the project. In addition, look at the height of the ceiling, if windows are present and are located in ideal areas, and other factors. Remember that the more changes that need to be made to the space in order to meet your requirements, the more time-consuming and expensive the conversion project will be for you. Also, you do not want to convert more space than you need if you are working on a tight budget.
Sealing and Weather Proofing the Space
Most lofts are not entirely weather proofed, and they may require the installation of insulation, drywall, subflooring and other materials before you can fully finish them off with light fixtures, flooring and other features. Basements may be prone to moisture and humidity, and these may require additional effort to make the area waterproof and sealed. However, if your basement is already waterproof, this step may not be required before you can start finishing out the space. Many basements have at least a concrete subfloor, which may make the installation of new flooring easier and more affordable than in an attic.
Availability of Utilities and Climate-Control Features
As a final note, spend time reviewing the accessibility of utilities and climate control features in the loft and basement. Each home is different, and some homes may only need to have a new duct installed for climate control accessibility. Light fixtures may already be available, or electricity may need to be run to the area. Keep in mind that the cost of running new electrical wiring, duct work or pipes can drastically increase the cost of your project. Because of this, you may want to consult with contractors about the cost of installing these features into the different spaces. With these estimates, you can make a more informed decision about which conversion project may be more cost effective for you.
Everything from the availability of space in these areas to features that will impact the cost of the project and the time for project completion should be taken into account before you decide whether to convert your loft or your basement. While some homeowners do not have the luxury of being able to choose between the two options, those who do will want to carefully research and analyse the options before finalizing their plans to complete a conversion project.