Attic conversion entry point suggestion

Old 12-30-03, 12:27 AM
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Lightbulb Attic conversion entry point suggestion

I am converting my attic from unfinished to MBR + MBA + Office. The entry now is pulldown/unfold stairs located in a small hallway. I also have an unfinished basement with a somewhat shoddy, non-standard, steep (but functional) stairwell; internal entry via hallway door.

The house is a 1925 craftsman. The attic is a huge area of open space and I intend to keep it that way. It will be somewhat "loft like" to break the monotony of the main floor's classically restored woodwork and craftsman simplicity/appeal.

My challenge is how I will get to what will be the new "space". Options (hopefully someone has another to add):

1. parallel the basement staircase. Entry options are from living room (head-on) or from dining room (lefthand side of proposed vertical stairs).

If this option, what considerations should be given to the opening and it's size? Smaller the better, of course, for the upper floor plan's sake.

2. Removed a small coat closet in the hallway and go upward along a wall that will show itself when the closet is gone. This plan will have someone coming from the basement steps and taking two steps before reaching the perpendicular stairs.

Keep in mind, we are "messing with" the main floor and keeping the craftsman feel is important. Ideas?

Where to put the stairs is first decision. How big to size the opening is the second decision...and, may make the first one for us.

Thanks in advance!
Old 12-30-03, 02:58 PM
bungalow jeff
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Well, since you are going to have to reframe the attic to support a MBR+MBA+Office you can pretty much put in a new set of stairs anywhere.
Old 12-31-03, 04:25 AM
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max headroom

Consider headroom where roof line slopes. You wouldn't want to have your stairs deliver you into the roof near the eaves.
Old 01-05-04, 08:42 AM
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Right out of the chute you will have some big decisions to make, so I will tell you what you must deal with, no matter what your plans are. Your staircase is already set in concrete. In other words, existing building codes will dictate what you will have. Your stairs will have to be 36" wide, and the stairs, treads and risers will have to be per code. The run of your stairs will be about 13' with 3' at the bottom. This will require a permit, and they will inspect it. It will also have to meet fire codes you have in force. So figuring 13' plus your landing, and 3' wide, you have eliminated a great part of your home where your stairs can be. Now It would be better to install the stairs parallel with your floor joists, and not perpendicular. Your floor joists where the stairs goes will have to be rebuilt per code. Another thing to take into consideration is the headroom available upstairs. This will take a minimum of 6' 8" from the tread upward all the way up the stairs. Another problem to face. Now armed with this ammo, you can start to redelope your plan. It will be nice when it is done, so planning and a visit to your local building permit department is a must. Have a good day.

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