When is a basement not a basement? Here are a few tips to consider when you remodel.
You’re renovating, and part of the renovation might be remodeling your basement. Before you draw up any plans, or start talking to contractors, think about why you’re remodeling, and what you want out of your new basement.
- Game room?
- Extra living quarters?
- Man cave?
- Place for the kids to do their thing?
All these purposes have a few things in common. Let’s take a look.
Increase the Value of Your Home
No matter what use you’re planning for your new basement, you need to consider its effect on the value of your home. The smart way to go is to make it more attractive, more livable, and more functional, no matter what your end purpose is.
Make sure the next person who owns your home can adjust it for their purpose without making huge structural changes.
Floors, walls, and ceiling
Particularly if you’re considering the retail value of your home, you should consider making the new basement look like a continuation of the rest of the house, structurally and cosmetically. You might have an impulse to add, for example, a false “drop” ceiling to make it look more finished.
The problem is, unless you have a huge basement, a false ceiling will make it look smaller, detracting from its overall appeal. If you have exposed beams, consider treating them with stain or paint to make them more attractive.
If the floor is a concrete slab, you have many ways to cover it and make it warmer and more appealing, from simple carpeting to wood or composite flooring to stamped, stained, or polished concrete overlays.
Make the walls reflect the use you’re renovating it for: from light, cheerful colors for an extra living area to darker shades for the ultimate “man cave“. You could even install a bar in the basement. Remember, though, that lighter colors make a better impression, and can make your space look bigger.
Think About an Air Circulation System
Because basements often don’t get full advantage of your air circulation system, you might think about added an air purification system, particularly if there’s a damp or dank small, to make it more livable and enjoyable.
Storage and Entryway
If you can afford it, think about creating an appealing open stairwell and entry rather than just a set of stairs. It can connect your basement with the rest of the house, and make it feel more open and finished.
An attractive, finished railing is, of course, a must, so family and guests feel safe and comfortable on the stairs. No matter what purpose you have for your new basement, consider adding built-in storage and shelving.
This will mean you don’t have to add storage furniture like bookcases and cabinets, giving you more usable space and making your basement look more finished.
Before You Start
Before you start, before you draw up your plans or start talking to contractors, don’t forget one important element. Your basement is, after all, a basement, but it doesn’t need to look and feel like a one.
Whatever your end purpose, you want your new basement to look like it’s a continuation of the rest of the house, so guests and family don’t feel like they’re entering a new world as they walk down the stairs.
Making that happen as you remodel will make your new basement a happier, more comfortable place to be, and will significantly raise the resale value of your home – if you ever decide to leave it.