Ideas needed for this built in cubby area please

Discussion in 'Decorating and Design' started by DKap77, May 13, 2014.

  1. May 13, 2014 #1

    DKap77

    DKap77

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    I have a quad level house. This is the front room on the main level. This is going to be our dining room. I will be laying some Pergo xp, new trim, painting, new lighting, and also painting that front door and replacing the hardware.

    Before I lay the floor I have to figure out what to do with that cubby area. I think at one time it was a closet and one of the previous owners made it into an entertainment center... When I had my home inspection my inspector said that there was not any attic access to the other side of my house and he said that he would put one in there. So, I will need to make an attic access as well.

    So, im looking for some recommendations on what to do with the space. Do I just make it a plain old closet, gut it put shelve in and some sort of doors? Or should I try to make some sort of open bench/storage area? Then how do I go about the attic access hole needed? I'm up for anything, so please bring any and all ideas!

    20140513_172106.jpg
     
  2. May 13, 2014 #2

    oldognewtrick

    oldognewtrick

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    First off...:welcome: to House Repair Talk!

    If you don't need the storage, I'd think about tearing out the front and the side facing the front door and open up floor space. Otherwise, I'd make a closet out of it with one side shelves and one side a coat rack.

    ...just my :2cents: and worth every penny it cost...;)
     
  3. May 13, 2014 #3

    DKap77

    DKap77

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    Thanks!

    The storage would be nice, the only reason I wouldn't completely tear it out would be that I need to make an attic access hole in the ceiling. And having the access out in plain site would not look very appealing.
     
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  4. May 13, 2014 #4

    nealtw

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    Yup ugle, probibly looked better on paper.
    We can see stairs on the right, is there a landing there and then the stairs come back over this cubby?
    Attic spaces that are over a hundred sq ft should have an access. They are ussually in a closet, so when you climb up there you get insulation all over things in the closet. When that dosn't work you find it in a bedroom wall. Some homeowners don't like the kids having access to it so they close it up. You want to know what you are cutting into before you cut and sometimes it's a challenge to find the right spot before the drywall goes in, so finding the right spot now may be tricky.
     
  5. May 13, 2014 #5

    DKap77

    DKap77

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    No, up stairs is the hallway with 2 bedrooms on one side and a bathroom and bedroom on the other.. There is attic access to that part of the house over those rooms. The home inspector said that there should be an access to the other side. If there ever was one in the past, it makes the most sense that it was there and that used to be a closet.
     
  6. May 14, 2014 #6

    nealtw

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    Pull the drywall out of the ceiling in the cubby, there should be good evidence of what was there and may still be there.
     
  7. May 14, 2014 #7

    DKap77

    DKap77

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    Yeah, I will do that tomorrow. Looking at the pitch of the roof from the outside, im not sure how much space will be up there to move around. At the very least, I would like check for insulation up there and if none or not enough add more.

    At any rate, I either make it a closet with doors the size it is now, bring it in some from the door side, make it into some sort of open seating storage area, or some other idea..
     
  8. May 14, 2014 #8

    nealtw

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    I think you will find that it was a 28" deep closet or it was a wall to allow a hallway from the door. If the hall upstairs run beside the attic, you could maybe just put a small door into the attic from there.
     
    Last edited: May 14, 2014
  9. May 14, 2014 #9

    DKap77

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    Up the stairs you see goes straight back to the end of the house. So it doesn't meet up anywhere with the other sides attic. Are you suggesting I just make it into a closet then?
     
  10. May 14, 2014 #10

    Wuzzat?

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    Usage determines storage. What will you store there and how often will it be used?
     
  11. May 14, 2014 #11

    nealtw

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    I would remove that ceiling and see if there is anything there to help make a plan. You may find an access there and maybe the framing for the top of the closet that was there.
     
  12. May 14, 2014 #12

    slownsteady

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    If you are going to make the room into a dining room, then maybe that space can be a sideboard or a china closet. If the finish is handsome enough, you may not need doors...or maybe doors on the lower half.

    The attic access situation is another story. Just because the home inspector suggested that spot, doesn't mean it's a good idea. Do you really want a hatch in the living space (especially a dining room)? Can you post a pic of the outside of your house? I can only assume that the second floor is half the size of the first and that you have a small attic over the lower half. You said the stairs don't meet the attic wall at the top, but something does. A bedroom maybe. You can access the attic through a hatch in the wall. That's a lot easier than hoisting things from the floor below-if you are thinking of using it for storage. But is access really necessary? Once you check the space for proper insulation / ventilation, you might just want to seal it up.
     
  13. May 14, 2014 #13

    inspectorD

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    This is what we northeasterners call a split level. It has a lower floor under those stairs to the right. The attic access will not be over that closet space, it will be to low of an access to where the roof enters the attic. The usual spot for the access is the ceiling where the stairs meet . Usually there is no slope to the stair ceiling , and there is a flat wall area behind you in the ceiling as you walk up the stairs to the bedrooms. That is the best spot for the access, but you will need a small ladder to get in there.

    I would remove the built in, and go from there, plans always change.:)
     
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  14. May 14, 2014 #14

    woodchuck

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    The carport or garage is less unsightly place for fold down stairs with a lock on it. The space looks ideal for mud room storage if that's the family's main entrance way. Place to leave shoes jackets etc. Cover it with louvered doors or not.
     
  15. May 15, 2014 #15

    beachguy005

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    If you absolutely have to have that as an access area, I would totally reframe it as a closet. I would have the door facing the entry door. I would also shrink the depth and width, pushing it in to increase the open area between the two doors. Sheetrock the wall facing the living area.
    Frankly, even if you don't need it as an access point I would do that anyway, especially given the size and bulk of what's there now. I'm also curious about the plug arrangement. It looks like they used a pigtail plugged into the lower outlet to feed the upper one. Definitely a no no.
     
    Last edited: May 15, 2014
  16. May 15, 2014 #16

    slownsteady

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    They probably had a TV on the upper shelf (not an excuse for bad wiring, just an observation).
     
  17. May 18, 2014 #17

    DKap77

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    I tore it all out. It was definitely a closet before.. It was all dry walled above to the ceiling with no hint of their ever being an attic access there.. I may cut an access hole to get up there so its easier to add lighting... Besides that one light in the pic there is no other lighting.. There is just an outlet tied to a switch, where they probably just used some kind of lamp...

    Right now im leaning towards putting in a bar area. Put in a base cabinet/counter top, a built in wine fridge, 2 small hanging cabinets and shelving with some stacked brick look tile...
     
  18. May 20, 2014 #18

    nealtw

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    Since you will be doing ceiling repairs anyway, at least a temp access there would be good, once you get up there you will have better idea where you can put a perminent one.
     
  19. May 20, 2014 #19

    slownsteady

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    Sounds like a good plan. But I think inspectorD nailed it earlier in the thread; you probably won't have any headroom if you try to access the attic at that spot.
     
  20. May 21, 2014 #20

    nealtw

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    That depends on the pitch of the roof.:banana:
     

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