A few years ago I showed a house and I make it a priority to peak in attics when possible. You never know what you will see. When I pulled down the stairs at this particular house, I was taken by surprise. I saw something I hadn't seen before and being in real estate as long as I have, I thought I would have seen this. It was an insulated box that sits above the stairs in the attic. So simple yet I hadn't ever encountered it before.
Have you ever pulled down the attic stairs and immediately get hit with debris? I've always been amazed at the amount of crud that finds itself on the stairs. How does it get there? How much wind is blowing around that this much stuff lands on the stairs? Another flaw with attic stairs inside the house is that you are blasted with a ton of heat or cold when you pull them down. Typically there isn't any insulation on the pull-down so you most likely are loosing a ton of energy. This little box remedies both problems. The crud is still a mystery to me but I had found a solution.
That day I went to the hardware store and bought a sheet of insulated foam board. It was very inexpensive and I had my box built and installed in less than an hour (more like 30 minutes).
Im going to try and explain how to build one for yourself but I bet you can already see how to do this.
Materials needed are:
1. 1 4x8 sheet of insulated foam board with foil backing
2. Foil tape (DO NOT USE DUCT TAPE!!! Although its says "duct" in the name, its the absolute worst thing to use because it peels off in the attic heat.)
3. Tape measure
4. Razor knife
Measure the depth of your folded stairs. The box must have room to enclose the stairs because they stick up above the joists or decking you may have in the attic. The 4 vertical sides will be cut this width.
Measure the length and width where the box will sit. Mine sits on the frame around the stairs. Its just like a regular door frame but of course its horizontal.
Before you cut anything, plan your cuts so you get all 5 pieces from one sheet of foam board.
Using a long straight-edge, cut all 5 pieces; 4 sides and a "lid" that fits on top of the sides.
Use the foil tape and tape it all together. To make it easy, use short pieces and "tack" it all together to get a basic 5 sided box structure. Once its all together, come back and use long strips of foil tape on the length of the edges to seal them all.
Install that bad boy and enjoy a little energy savings and no more crud falling on you when you pull the stairs down.
Legacy DFW Real Estate
I've been in this exciting and challenging world of real estate since 2004 and I've loved every minute - almost. Ive sold new construction for a national builder and I've been 1 of 400+ realtors with a "big-box" brokerage. My sweet-spot is as an active broker. I love educating agents on how to navigate the realty waters but I also love the interaction with buyers and sellers and helping them achieve their goals. Whether its a one bedroom shack or a multi-million dollar mansion, everyone deserves proper, experienced, detail oriented representation. These ramblings are thoughts I want to share as I do what I do. I hope you learn and maybe laugh a little as well.