insulating and cooling attic: what expert to call?

I'm trying to figure out if there's one profession and/or one kind of expert to call in to tell me if my converted attic can ever be made cool enough to live and work in during the summer. it's listed by the town as part of the offical living space, so i'm paying taxes on it, and yet it's totally unliveable at least 6 months of the year. We're talking 100 degree plus.
It's all my fault, of course, for buying the place in the winter and taking the owner's word for its year-round liveability. but i'd like to do something about it, without spending a total fortune, just so i can get some use out of it since i'm already paying taxes on it.
i won't belabor you all with the specifics of the attic, only to ask if there's a single individual profession that deals with these things in all its many facets? for instance, i had an energy specialist for the local utility come have a look; he recommended stripping out all the old substandard cotton insulation and putting in new insulation. would that make it liveable? i says. yeah, maybe, he says. maybe? i says. yeah, he says, shrugging. i asked him about a/c units and ridge vents and various fans and other stuff and he really didn't have any impressive thoughts. i need someone who can look at the thing holistically, bringing to bear knowledge of insulation materials, a/c, fans, and vents, and all the other options i don't know about, and how they might all work together to solve my problem. Or not, if it can't be fixed. what i don't need is someone who knows a lot about a little or a little about a lot. i need a freaking expert! does such an animal exist or is this one of those piecemeal deals where you get a whole bunch of different "experts" in and the whole ends up being much less than the sum of its parts. thanks!
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
Is there free air flow (no closed doors) from the rest of the building, and is the rest air conditioned?

Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
hi bob: to answer your question, there is free flow if i leave the downstairs door open and no the rest is not air conditioned. actually, in this instance, i'm not looking for advice about what to do; i'm looking for advice about who to call to come to the house and give advice. i've learned plenty from previous questions and from reading what others have said. now it's time to call someone in, if only i can figure out who that someone is. thanks!
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
If the lower floors are not air conditioned, it's surprising that you would believe the previous owner that the attic stays cool. If you don't want air conditioning, then call a builder about vents and installing some automatic fans. If you want to keep the attic and lower floors cooler than the outside, you're going to need to call an air conditioning contractor.

Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
snipped-for-privacy@gmail.com wrote:

Any HVAC contractor can tell you how much it will cost you to keep it cool. I guarantee it can be made livable. The only question is do you want to pay the cost of the equipment the the electric bills.
--
Joseph Meehan

Dia duit
  Click to see the full signature.
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload

You may find one person, perhaps two. A good HVAC guy can tell you what you need to cool what you have. He will know about the ratings of insulation and can do calculations. to determine the AC needs. He may or may not know about ridge vents and such, but a good building contractor should have knowledge of that portion. You are on the right track with venting the space above the living space.
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
here's a free education for you and your home. this website has lots of very informative reading, here's an excellent 57 pages pdf at: http://www.buildingscience.com/resources/mold/Read_This_Before_You_Ventilate.pdf
and much more at: http://www.buildingscience.com/resources/homeowner.htm
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
a local architect. http://www.answers.com/architect
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
a local architect.
ABSOLUTELY!
First if your going to do this RIGHT you need to insulate the roof and add ventilation between the space and roof decking, rather than concern yourself with the attic floor. lack of ventilation can ruin your roof fast:(
you will need air conditioning, and should do that with a larger effort to do the entire home. true you could put a big hugger window unit up there but they are costly to operate and dont add value to your house. for resale reasons air conditioning is becoming standard today, unless you live in the artic.
if you dont have a dormer this might be something to consider, it adds light and space.
its definetely possible the architect.can give you a iidea of total costs
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload

HomeOwnersHub.com is a website for homeowners and building and maintenance pros. It is not affiliated with any of the manufacturers or service providers discussed here. All logos and trade names are the property of their respective owners.