15 Attic Flooring Ideas
You've finally found the time or the money to turn your attic into the playroom or bedroom you need, or maybe you found a neat idea for transforming it into a library or game lounge. Now you have the task of finishing the floor so you can design your attic room. Check out our list of Attic Flooring Ideas to find the floor type that best suits your needs.
1) Attic Decking Kit
Insulating an attic is a great way to cut down on heating bills. If you've ever been in an attic in the summer, you know that they can collect most of the heat in a house. Once you've insulated, though, you've lost the storage space you were using. After all, you don't want to store anything on uncovered insulation! Instead, install this attic flooring kit from Amazon to regain your floor space and use the newly insulated attic for extra storage.
2) Interlocking Flooring
Interlocking flooring is a great way to save money on installing your attic floor. With interlocking flooring like these teak tiles from Amazon, you can install it yourself, and since they lock together without tools, you don't have to struggle to get tools into a narrow attic space. They can go over slightly uneven surfaces that could exist in an old attic and are designed for indoors or outdoors so that you don't have to worry much about damp conditions.
If you're fully finishing your attic and trying to pick flooring, carpet is a great choice. It's particularly good if you're making an attic bedroom or a playroom in a small attic that you'll need to crawl in. Carpet is much more comfortable to crawl on than hard flooring. When you install it, you can use this video by My Garage Build to learn how to install it or hire a contractor. If your attic is narrow or short, it may be best to hire a professional.
4) Cut Around Oddities
One of the most significant issues you'll run into when flooring an attic, whether it's newly-insulated storage space or a finished attic, is odd-shaped items sticking through the floor. Most attics have chimneys, vent pipes, or supports sticking up into their attic spaces, and you might need to cut around them. In this article, Tom Kraeutler, with the Money Pit, discusses proper attic floor insulation for an attic with ceiling joists that are in the way.
5) Stay Simple
If you're finishing an attic room completely, you want it to be comfortable, but you're probably not using it to entertain guests. Instead of focusing on making it look ornate or pretty, keep it simple, and stay focused on building a usable space. A simple, modern design like the one in this picture can be perfect for a small attic like the one in the image or paired with a brick-faced wall to create an industrial loft look.
6) Walking Deck Boards
Walking deck boards are a storage system designed specifically for unfinished attic spaces. The lightweight panels are easy to carry up attic stairs, and they're less likely to cause sagging if your attic isn't designed for the weight of a floor. The panels can hold up to 250 pounds each, making them safe for most people to walk on, and they won't mildew if your attic isn't perfectly sealed. Amazon users rated them as easy to install and sturdy, so you shouldn't have any issues putting them in and keeping them there for a long time.
If you're only installing the attic floor for more storage after insulating the space, you don't need a fancy floor; you just need something you can walk on. As long as your floor can handle the weight, you can install plywood. This also sets it up so you can install better flooring in the future, if you choose to, and if your attic can support the weight of a floor. If you install a finished floor, you'll want plywood underneath, also.
If you have a short attic space, whether you're using it for a little playroom or for a larger game room or another area, you'll want comfortable floors. This way, if you have to kneel or crawl to move around, you won't hurt your knees. If the area is a bedroom or other cozy space, you'll want soft floors, too. While you can install carpet, it can be a challenging project if the ceilings continue all the way to the floor. Instead, get rugs like this one from Amazon.
9) Consider Applications
What're you using the attic for, once you put in the floors? Did you just add insulation, and you want to get your storage space back by covering the insulation? Perhaps you're finishing the entire area to add a bedroom, or to build a basement apartment? In this article, Glenda Taylor and Bob Vila describe some of the things you'll need to consider, including different ways to plan flooring based on the existing structure and intended use.
10) Smooth Flooring
If you have a short attic and a chance that you'll need to crawl or kneel to move around, you want to install a smooth floor. This way, you won't hurt yourself or damage thin clothing on rough flooring materials like plywood. If you have a wood floor, regardless of the height of the space, make sure nothing is sticking up, even if it's just a storage space. Doing so will make it easier to slide totes or shelves around the area as you add new things or reorganize.
If you're only using the room for storing things, for a kids' playroom, you don't need expensive flooring. Laminate flooring is likely the cheapest finished floor design you can choose, and it's sufficient for a playroom, game room, or storage space. You can use this guide to learn how to put in laminate flooring or hire a contractor if you prefer not to do it yourself. Laminate won't be as durable as hardwood, but the cost probably outweighs any negative factors for installing it in an attic.
If you're turning the attic into a finished room, you'll need to consider several things. If your insulation settles over time, as it often does, or if you don't have insulation yet, you'll have to add insulation before you do your flooring. You can watch this video by This Old House to learn how to add insulation to your attic floor. You generally want to do this before installing the flooring, so you don't have to redo your work if you're going to insulate the area later.
13) What Room Will It Be?
If you're flooring your attic because it'll be a finished room, you'll need to think about the room's use. Is it a playroom? A guest room? Just storage? Consider what you're using the space for, and check out this article by manny saran from Super Choice Carpet and Hardwood to get some advice on different flooring types for various attic rooms. If your room isn't on their list, that's okay. Think about whether you'll need a durable floor, a comfortable floor, a cheap floor, or something else. Then, use this information to choose the right material.
Hardwood is always an exceptional choice for an attractive room. If you're turning your attic into an apartment and building a dining room or fancy living room in it, you'll want wood like this bamboo flooring from The Home Depot. You may even want it in a bedroom. On the other hand, if you're using it for a playroom or storage, you don't really need something that nice, and hardwood can be expensive. The floor locks together, so you can either install it yourself or hire somebody.
Many attics have little to no flooring, which makes them almost useless for storage. This can be remedied by adding plywood, or by boarding the attic, as described in this article by Ben Field. Boarding the attic floor will add to the structure's stability, just as plywood does, and give you a surface to store things on and walk on. Before you start, make sure that your floor is designed to hold the weight of a floor and stored items.
What other ideas could we have added? Tell us about it in the comments below.