My living room has a huge vaulted ceiling. It just feels like wasted space and we need another bedroom. How expensive would it be to use the space for a loft? Would it be the same to extend the second floor out into that space? Have you seen successful home additions like these?
Joe M. ~ Santa Rosa, California
The addition of a loft can go either way as far as cost goes, depending on certain factors. Is the foundation capable of handling the load of a second floor? If a floor is added, will there be sufficient headroom to qualify this space as living area, or to much area to qualify it as a loft? Is it possible to get code compliant ingress and egress for this space? Will there be adequate heating and cooling? Your local building department can answer all of these questions. They will have all the information you need pertaining to lofts, ingress egress, additions, and engineering. I have seen many successful loft and second story additions done over the years. This is the type of addition that can seem like a snap at first glance but until you have a clear understanding of the whole scope of the project do not jump to any cost assumptions. Get a detailed set of engineered working drawings first, and then you will be able to get some accurate cost estimates for your project. I would think that you could figure roughly $50/square foot for a basic loft with no major structural changes. I hope this helps!