If you own a house with a cathedral or double height ceiling and need additional living space, have you ever wondered if it's possible to build a loft? A loft can give you additional space for a home office, a guest bedroom, a hang-out room for your children, or many other reasons. You can install a spiral staircase to reach the loft and cut down on the amount of floor space that will be needed in the room below. But first, you'll need to do some homework and hire a few professionals. Here are the professionals you need to consult with.
Building Code Enforcement Officer
You'll need to consult with your municipality's building code authority to determine whether or not building a loft will be within building code regulations. This not only includes the question of additional living space and how that affects your tax assessment, but it also includes the questions of whether or not the minimum height requirements for ceilings and staircase risers can be met. Additional issues may be related to electrical outlets and wiring for lighting.
You'll also need to hire a structural engineer who can determine whether or not your home's structure is strong enough for the additional load of a loft. The loft will need to be attached to a load bearing wall or supported fully by a weight bearing post and beam system, which could take up some much needed floor space in the room below. Also, the home's foundation needs to be assessed to determine if it is capable of bearing the additional weight of the structure of a loft. If it's not, you may need to bolster the foundation with underpinning, which is a process that involves either extending the depth of the foundation or by securing screw piles, beams and brackets to the existing foundation.
Another professional you should hire is an architect to design the loft and draw up plans for it, which will include placements for all the electrical wiring, outlets, and lighting fixtures and switches. The architect can also plan where any heating and air conditioning vents will be located and how the vents and necessary duct work to the vents will be connected to the main system of the home, if necessary. The architect can also determine the best location for the spiral staircase, while keeping the project within the building code regulations and recommendations from the structural engineer.
Contact a service, like Lamonaca Iron Works Inc, for more help.