Hi, I bought my first house roughly one year ago. It was guessed to have been built around 1950. It is a one story home with a crawl space below. I have completely replaced the floor joists (treated) and subfloor due to termites and rot, and removed an unused chimney that was walled up and taking up space in a spare room. I am now looking to make living space out of the attic. Here is where the problem starts. The house originally had 12' ceilings, at some time a drop ceiling was installed to 8'. Now whoever did this installed a second set of 2X6 joist 3' below the original ceiling and then attached a 2X4 structure 1' foot below that to support the drywall. Now since I am not going raise my ceiling back to 12', I would really like to make use of that 4' of lost space. Would it be possible to install joist at the 8' ceiling height and attach them to the outside wall studs with lag bolts or run a joist along the walls and attach it to the studs with lag bolts and use joist hangers? If you know of a way please tell. I would really hate to not be able to do this. The roof line is extremely steep and the amount of floor space in the house would almost double with an attic addition.