The two main advantages of finishing a basement are that it adds usable space and value to your home. You can include an extra bedroom for guests or family members; convert the basement into a playroom or entertaining space; create space for a fitness area or home office; convert the space into an in-law suite or rental income property; install a laundry room or extra storage, or choose an alternative to a home addition. With all of these options, it’s no wonder that a completed basement is valuable to both existing and prospective homeowners.
There are three major factors to consider when deciding if your unfinished basement is suitable for conversion to a completed living space.
- Check with your local building inspector to ensure enough headroom to develop completed living quarters in the basement. Typically, at least 7 feet of headroom is required.
- It is also critical that the basement be easily accessible and have several means of escape, such as a stairway, windows, and/or walkout entrances.
- Before beginning the process of turning your basement into a completed living space, ensure that there are no moisture issues. Before commencing building, you may want to engage an expert to examine and assist with any basement water or moisture concerns.
- Inspect your foundation.
Before the rebuilding process, you should have a foundation assessment to discover structural deterioration, corrosion, waterproofing difficulties, cracks, beams sagging, and other issues. Repairing these issues is critical to preserving your house’s structural integrity. It’s preferable to take care of them beforehand; otherwise, your restoration might take longer and be more expensive.
- Take care of drainage issues.
Water damage is a major problem for homeowners, especially in basements. If you renovate without considering drainage and possible water damage, you will most likely come to regret it later. Take the time now to grade your grass, build any required drains, consider installing waterproofing solutions, and take any other precautions that your waterproofing firm believes will help you secure your property.
- Make sure the basement is dry.
The cause of moisture concerns will almost certainly be uncovered during your foundation examination, but there may be other factors at work as well. You may need to clean or realign your gutters, install a sump pump, and do other services. These solutions may range in price from a few hundred dollars to a few thousand dollars, so you may want to evaluate before drafting your renovation budget.
- Perform a thorough cleaning.
You can’t expect your contractors to work around the current chaos in your basement. You’ll need to clear out everything presently being kept there and find a temporary home for it somewhere (like a spare room, a storage pod, or an off-site storage facility).
- Decide how you will dispose of rubbish.
You may not have considered it, but if you’re doing any aspect of your project yourself or want to ensure your contractors keep expenses under control, it’s something to consider. Renovation projects create a lot of garbage, and a lot of it is too large to throw away on the curb. If you need to hire a dumpster and handle pick-up, you should plan ahead of time and incorporate this into your total budget.
- Be clear about the project’s scope from the outset, and don’t stray from it.
- Spend no more than 15% to 20% of your house’s worth on a basement renovation project unless you plan to stay in your home for at least five years.
- Remember that open area are less expensive than individual rooms; unless you want a private place or noise control to operate in a separate room, choose the open concept.
- Don’t be tempted to spend on custom-made items; the usage of credit cards to pay home improvement projects climbed to 23% in 2016 – there’s no sense going into debt for a basement pro!
- Keep in mind that the most expensive aspects of a makeover are often the floor and wall coverings, followed by plumbing and electrical. Interior carpentry (steps, railings, and trim), drywall and insulation, cabinets and worktops, paint, and cleaning are all possible expenditures.
- Avoid utilizing organic goods in basement restorations since they are more costly and prone to mould development, which might result in additional replacement expenditures in the long term.
- Avoid the most costly materials; marble countertops and stainless steel appliances aren’t required to make a basement appear wonderful!