How To Look At A House

McGarry and Madsen's home inspection blog for buyers of  

site-built, mobile/manfuactured and modular homes

Can I put an attic access hatch in closet?

Tuesday, December 28, 2021

The building code allows attic access from a closet ceiling as long as it meets the requirements of having a minimum 22” x 30” opening and at least 30” of headroom directly above the opening. But there are several good reasons not to put the attic access in a closet:
1) It is often necessary to remove a stack of stored items, and possibly some shelving, to get at the opening.
2) Positioning the legs of a ladder in a cramped closet can be difficult, especially if it is narrow or the ceiling is at 10 or 12 feet.
3) Large homes often have two attic access openings, one in the garage and the other at the opposite end of the house at the master bedroom walk-in closet. The master bedroom access is usually rarely used and may have insulation blown over the opening hatch. If a barrier was not installed in the attic around the hatch, opening it will create a huge mess below.    

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Here’s links to some of our other articles about attic access:

Where is the attic?

Why is there no attic access hatch in the house?

What is the building code requirement for an attic access hatch, scuttle, or door?

Why are most pull-down attic ladders not approved by building code for installation in a garage?  

 Is a house required to have an attic?

What are the warning signs of a dangerous attic pull-down ladder? 

Should I buy a house with no attic access hatch? 

Does the code require a barrier/well around the attic access hatch for blown insulation?

• When is a house not required to have an attic access hatch? 

Does a mobile home have an attic? 

What is the minimum size for attic access opening?

• When does code require an attic pull-down ladder to be installed? 

 Are attic pull-down ladders required to be code-approved?

Can the attic access opening be outside the house according to the building code?

• Where should attic access be placed by code? 

 What is best location for attic access hatch?

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