What does your loft look like? Perhaps you haven’t seen it in a while, especially if you don’t have a fitted loft ladder or an electric light.
It can be a risky business, balancing on your ladder with a torch, to scramble through the hatch and explore an area of the house, often forgotten, and often containing more than insulation for heat loss or a TV aerial.
If you’ve lived in a place for a number of years, the loft can be a little bit like the unconscious mind, holding forgotten things relating to past memories. A glimpse of those things can set you back into another time entirely. Old photos, old clothes, school reports, electrical items, college projects, the list is endless. We put things there, out of sight, perhaps for storage, or to review another time.
When will that other time be? When it’s time to move? When we can no longer get up there and other family members are left to sort?
It could be because you’d rather not go up there, knowing it holds so many things that you may not feel ready to deal with, and yet there is a part of you that knows – at some time, those things have to be removed.
But if you are sure there is a lot, years and years’ worth, it can feel overwhelming and you don’t know where to start.
I was planning to sell my home of 18 years, and it took months to clear the loft; it was a huge area all boarded out. Partly because there were some years when I was without transport, it was easier to put things in the loft, just for the time being. And then the time came, and because the large loft area was a great selling tool, it offered the option of planning permission that would add another room, I had to make it spacious.
Recently I helped some elderly clients, now unable to get into the loft of their home of 30 years. Much of the stuff was ruined as they’d had some unwelcome visitors, mice, and the mice had been busy chewing bags and leaving droppings throughout. What other visitors could be lurking right above our heads, amongst our long forgotten things?
At what cost?
Lofts or Attics intrigue me, and many stories or books have been written on what can be hidden in an attic. In early post war time, homes must have held some interesting treasures, in particular when families had to leave in haste.
How about this for synchronicity, as I was preparing this blog and waiting for some photos to load, I started to fiddle with the remote and found myself watching ‘Cash in the Attic’, in the episode showing, the family were aiming to get enough money together, by selling their unwanted things at auction, becasue they wanted to make a trip all-together to New York. Now I was curious, and yes, they did it, and more!
Here are a few tips
Are you curious enough yet to tackle your loft, to clear space and maybe make a few sales? And so why not start this bank holiday weekend, here are a few tips for planning the task:-
- Check it out first, take a look, and give yourself a rough idea of the type of items that have been stored over the years.
- Wear suitable clothing and be safe. (I’d recommend sensible footwear, especially if balancing on the beams, some gloves and a dust mask).
- Test how safe your loft ladder is.
- Consider what light source you will use to illuminate the loft.
- Place some dust sheets down, boxes and things will be dusty, and in some cases you may have fibres attached from the insulation.
- Ensure there is someone else available to help you lower things down.
- Set a room aside, or a good deal of space, so that you can sort the items you bring down.
- Have plenty of sturdy rubbish sacks available.
- What a load off your mind and literally overhead, this could bring? Good luck!