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Converting Your Attic, Basement or Garage Into Great Living Space

Good advice from a local architect to address the challenges of needing more living space.

Do you need more living space? One option I recommend is to explore transforming your attic, basement or garage into a terrific living area. These three spaces often present attractive & more affordable opportunities to expand your home to meet your specific living needs.  There is also less of chance you’ll
have to deal with not conforming to your local zoning requirements.

Attics can make wonderful bedrooms, home offices and studies.  Some challenges to converting attics to living space include low headroom, access may be difficult as well as existing structural floor joists that may need reinforcing and the need to make other structural alterations to accommodate the conversion.

Basements are often converted into terrific kid’s play rooms, all-purpose family rooms, home offices and exercise rooms among other living spaces.  Transforming basements into finished areas is usually made easier since they often already have good access to the existing living areas and have existing
walls and floors that just need finishing.   The drawbacks regularly include having to deal with moisture, lack of much natural light and low headroom.

Garages can be transformed into nice family rooms, bedrooms and in-law apartments.  Some real benefits for converting garages into living spaces are that there is usually  less structural alterations needed, easy exterior access that already exist, good connection to key interior living spaces as well as existing floors and walls that require more moderate changes.  Conversion challenges include the need to find another area to park your car(s) and deal with how to make the exterior look less like a garage and more like its part of your home.

Ira Henowitz AIA Architect provides practical yet creative professional  architectural consulting to address your unique design challenges in your home or workplace. Ira can be reached at ihenowitz@comcast.net.

This post is contributed by a community member. The views expressed in this blog are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of Patch Media Corporation. Everyone is welcome to submit a post to Patch. If you'd like to post a blog, go here to get started.

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