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The attic may seem like a good place to store your unused clothing, tools, and pieces of furniture… but is it safe? Can the attic be used for storage? Will it be able to support all your items? In this post, we’ll try to unpack all these questions and more… 

Can I use the attic for storage? 

Technically, yes. The attic can support storage but only for very light objects or equipment. Not all attics are made alike so this also depends on how much space your attic has.

Another factor to take into consideration is the temperature of your attic. Most attics are not temperature-controlled and they can get colder than the rest of the house during winter months. This is not ideal for storing temperature-sensitive items such as electronics. 

However, if you really want to use your attic for storage, here are some attic storage ideas. 

How to convert the attic for storage? 

If you really want to know how to create an attic storage space, the first step is to clean it and get rid of unused or unwanted objects. (Are you still hanging onto that old video cassette player? Maybe it’s finally time to let it go!) 

After a thorough cleaning, the next step is to insulate the space and build shelves for storage. 

How to insulate attic storage space

Did you know that by insulating your attic, you’re not only creating a space for safe storage but you’re also reducing your electricity costs? Yes, you read that right! By properly insulating your attic, you can save on electricity bills. After all, you won’t need to turn up the heat during winter. By doing so, you’re not adding to greenhouse gas emissions as well. 

To properly insulate your attic storage space, you need several items: attic insulation, foil top-up quilt, foil wrap tape, pipe insulation, cold water tank jacket, staple gun, scissors or knife. Don’t forget your protective equipment such as gloves, face masks, and goggles!

  • Step 1: Start with the area furthest from the attic door. Roll out the insulation and make sure to leave gaps at the eaves so that air can still flow through. 
  • Step 2: Make sure not to leave any gaps between the two rolls. Press the butt joints tightly against each other.  
  • Step 3: Use the foil top-up quilt for additional insulation. This handy layer of protection also keeps your home cool during summer. You can attach this directly to the rafters using the staple gun. 
  • Step 4: Finish any seals using foil tape. 
  • Step 5: If the water storage tank is located in your attic, don’t forget to insulate that as well to prevent it from freezing. You can simply use a tank cover. For the pipes, you may use semi-split pipe insulation, which you can secure in place using tape. 

How to build attic storage shelves

It may be tempting to just dump all your items inside the attic and close the door, but it would be better if you have proper storage equipment like shelves, which can make it easier for you to grab some nifty little trinket the next time you need it. 

  • Step 1: Consider the attic door before building the shelves. Is it too small that you have to build the attic storage shelf inside the attic? Or can you build it elsewhere and just push it back in the attic? 
  • Step 2: Do you have a lot of time to build your own shelves from scratch? If yes, you should measure the dimensions of your attic first and research what type of shelving is appropriate. The different types of shelves are: 
    • FIxed brackets or suspended shelves 
    • Corner shelves
    • Right-angled corner shelves 
    • Rotating shelves
    • Curved-angle shelves 

The best one for an attic may be the suspended shelves and you can use the inclination of your roof to suspend the rows. 

  • Step 3: Don’t have a lot of time? Then you can call in your local carpenter or install it yourself with a store-bought shelf. 

How do I make storage in my attic?

If you’re wondering how you can maximise attic storage, the key is balance. You have to choose which items can fit up there and which ones you have to throw away or store somewhere else. For example, if you’re running out of space to store precious items, you may also use storage units! They’re safe and you don’t need to do maintenance to keep your items protected!

How to organise attic storage 

Here are several tips on how to better organise your attic storage:

  • Use plastic containers to store small items. Group related items together such as “holiday decorations” or “ DIY tools”. 
  • Use clear labels so you know which boxes contain what items without having to open each box. 
  • If you anticipate that you will need an item more often than others, place that item near the attic door or somewhere more accessible. 
  • Use those shelves we talked about and remember to store the heavier items on the bottom shelf. 

What can I store in my attic for storage?

Are you thinking of using your attic storage for clothes? Or do you need somewhere to store unused electronics or gym equipment? The rule of thumb is you should store items that will not be damaged by extreme heat or cold. Things you can store include:

  • Holiday decors 
  • Extra kitchen supplies such as dish sets or ceramics 
  • Travel equipment
  • Hiking and camping equipment 
  • Tools needed for hobbies (craft supplies, etc.) 

What shouldn’t I store in my attic for storage? 

We cannot emphasize this enough: Do not store anything that can deteriorate over time if exposed to extreme heat or cold. Insulating your attic may help a bit but it’s also not a long-term solution. 

Some of the items you should avoid storing in your attic are: 

  • Old photographs 
  • Electronics such as old laptops or tablets 
  • Works of art like paintings 
  • Food 
  • Wood 

Is attic storage safe?

We have to be completely honest here. The attic is not the best place to store your things. While it may provide short-term solutions for your storage needs, the attic can be exposed to extreme temperatures and creepy crawlies that can ruin your items. 

Is the attic too hot for storage? 

The attic is usually the same temperature as the air outside the house but without ventilation, it can reach 65 degrees celsius in the heat of summer. (It’s usually 30 to 40 degrees hotter than the outside.) 

During winter, the warm air in the attic can also lead to condensation. Because of the moisture that can accumulate in your insulation, it can also dampen objects stored in the attic.  

Looking for attic storage solutions?

A good alternative to your attic is storage units. With the likes of furniture storage units, you are not limited by sizes because you can choose compartments or rooms depending on how much space you need. Storage units are also safe and secure 24/7 and facilities like Nesta also offer packing boxes and moving services as an add-on! 

So, what are you waiting for? Instead of going through the trouble of insulating and building shelves for your attic, explore your storage unit options with Nesta!