The addition of a loft to your home could help increase your home’s space. A loft is versatile. It could be used as an extra room – a bedroom, study room or even an entertainment area. Alternatively, it could also simply be used as a room for extra storage. In theory, creating a loft is easy. You just need to connect a staircase to the space under your roof. But, here’s the thing, the design and placement of your stairs are actually really important.
Most people might think that there is only one place and one way to place their loft stairs. But that’s wrong. With careful planning, your stairs placement could actually entirely change and improve the layout of your loft floor and upper-level floor.
Stairs and Stairs
The easiest and most common way to position and place your loft stairs would be to place them directly above your current stairs’ location. This is the simplest and most efficient placement for living. Anyone seeking to enter the loft could simply follow the stairs all the way up. There will be no confused visitors trying to get to the loft. After all, it’s a straight simple path up!
However, this method is really the easiest and most common design to implement. If you’re looking to be different or clever, it would be best to work with a designer for something better. We’ve also come up with a few other placements below that you could consider.
Away and Separate
An alternative idea is to position your loft stairs away from your main staircase. This is less efficient but it allows for greater partitioning of your space. Furthermore, the most important thing about your staircase placement is this – you want the staircase leaving the lower floor and reaching the loft fair at optimal placings. Choosing to place stairs above stairs may not achieve this. Therefore, an independent and separated staircase for your loft might be better.
If your loft is intended to be used as a bedroom, this separate staircase landing for the loft creates an even greater sense of personal space for the occupant. The landing of the staircase could even feel like the doorway to their own home within a home.
Have Your Loft Start from the Lower Floor
Another excellent and brilliant idea is to have the staircase be part of the loft. This means that the base of the staircase would be the loft’s entryway too. This reduces the space on your lower floor but conversely, opens up a great amount of space for your loft itself. The two sides of the stairwell can be converted into bookshelves to be used as storage space too! Again, if this loft is intended to be someone’s bedroom, this layout would provide them with a greater and more intimate personal space.
Who Doesn’t Love Privacy?
This is a great option for lofts that serve as an ensuite bathroom to a bedroom. A small, private staircase can be built to connect these two rooms. This is the case because such a loft connection would not require any fire separation. You could thus have a gorgeous, small, helix staircase connecting your ensuite bathroom to your own bedroom.
If your loft is a bedroom or study, fire separation laws will still apply and a small, private staircase would be out of the question. However, even if your loft is meant to be an ensuite, it might be best to consult professionals and even the Building Control Authority. This would ensure your own safety, which is of the utmost importance.
Alternate Steps Staircase
Alternate Steps Staircases are staircases where the steps are formed on alternate sides. These stairs are built with the theory that people only step on alternate feet for each step of a staircase. A full step is hence, unnecessary. These staircases may look pretty funky and hard to use but they are a great option for you if you have limited horizontal space.
However, like the previous set of stairs, these stairs may not be suitable for the type of loft you are building. Therefore, do remember to check if these stairs are acceptable for your type of loft. You can do so by checking the specific building regulations on staircases. Additionally, this staircase may not be suitable for everyone as navigating it can be difficult.
Ensure There’s Sufficient Light
A worry that comes with building a loft is that it might block out much of the existing light. You might then be worried that your current space would become dark. A clever way to prevent this is then to implement a glass floor panel on your loft floor landing. This ensures that the lower floor will still remain illuminated. The glass panel also has the benefit of creating a modern look for your home.
Build an Open-Plan Loft
This is the best option for you if you are currently living alone and have no need for walls segregating your space. This layout is great because it enables you to skirt the need for fire separation and other building laws. This is because both the lower and loft floor would constitute just one room. However, always check with the Building Control to ensure that your living space is safe for you.
Utilise Your Stairs as a Decorative Element
At the end of the day, you’d want your staircase to be useful and safe. As long as you consult a professional and stick to the guiding regulations, that’s easily achievable. Once you have that, you can then move on to using your stairs as a way to further spruce up your house. Staircases are usually big and space consuming and these are optimal areas for you to plan and design to maximise your house’s aesthetic quality.
It doesn’t have to be too complicated. A simple design may leave your house looking chic and elegant. Just a small change to your staircase plan and your house’s design may improve exponentially. Therefore, remember to invest some time into planning your loft’s stairs.