If you have an unfinished basement in your home and you are not utilizing it for any daily activity in your life, it’s a missed opportunity to maximize space and increase the value of your home. The average basement is a dusty, damp, and dark storage area for household goods; but today’s homeowners are making more changes to their homes to retrofit their lifestyles and that includes unfinished basements.
So, what can you do with an unfinished basement?
In this month’s blog, we examine the core considerations for tackling a basement makeover regardless of the specific vision. We also provide different basement makeover ideas.
Before you begin a basement makeover, there are various considerations related to this type of project, regardless of your desired outcome. These considerations are important because they can determine how much cost and effort will need to go into your basement to achieve your vision.
You should begin any home improvements with an idea of your budget. Knowing how much you are able and willing to spend can determine the extent of changes you can make to your existing space.
For the most part, a basement makeover will include varying degrees of cost for the following:
- Electrical: For any space in the basement, you will most likely need to add electrical outlets, as well as ceiling “ruff-ins” for lighting or fans. You may even want to do recessed lighting in the basement.
- Ventilation: Most basements are naturally cooler than the rest of the home because they may be fully or partially underground. However, that does not help you with keeping a basement space warm in the winter months. You will need to consider adding ductwork to bring heating and cooling into your basement space.
- Drywall: If you have cinderblock or open walls and ceiling, you will want to cover them with drywall to enclose the basement space. Any of this work would need to be coordinated with electrical, ventilation, and possibly plumbing.
- Flooring: If your basement currently has concrete slab for flooring, you will need to consider your flooring upgrades to tile, carpeting, wood, or laminates. However, more homeowners are using polished and painted concrete as a flooring option.
- Plumbing (optional): If you are interested in adding a bathroom to your basement space, or even just a sink for a bar, you will need to consider plumbing.
- Windows (optional): If your basement has windows, you may want to look at upgrading them so they are sealed well and give you options for cleaning and opening for ventilation in spring and summer time.
- Internet or cable connectivity (optional): If you plan to have devices in your basement that use the internet or cable, then another important consideration is getting the basement space wired. With streaming TVs, an internet connection or even enhanced Wi-Fi from your home network can help to bring you online in your new space.
To plan your project, make sure to carefully consider the major changes you will need to add to your budget. The design consultants at Prominent Builders and Design can work with you to plan a basement makeover and establish a budget for the necessary work.
Basement Makeover Ideas
Converting an unfinished basement into living space is a great way to increase the utilization of your home and add to its resale value. Below, we share some different ideas for basement makeovers:
- Fitness Room: More and more, Americans are working out on their own time in their homes. With newer fitness equipment available like sophisticated bikes, treadmills, or even wall mirrors, the basement is a perfect space to complete your daily workouts. Adding mirrors to the walls is a great way to enhance the space with light and create a “gym” feel. You may also want to consider using laminate flooring to keep floors from being damaged by weights or equipment.
- Entertainment Complex: Many basement makeovers focus on added entertainment space, where family or guests can relax on a sectional and enjoy the games on a large, flat screen TV. It’s also a great way to build a gaming area for kids and adult kids to enjoy their favorite video games. If you want to make it a space that invites guests to mix and mingle, then consider adding a dry or even a wet bar. Connectivity will be important for any entertainment space.
- Home Office: With more Americans working from home, an unfinished basement can become a private and quiet home office space. If you are thinking of an “all-purpose” area, then having drop down desks or furniture that can convert is an excellent way to create a multi-functional area.
- Project or Hobby Room: If you have taken up a new hobby or are looking for some studio space for painting, an unfinished basement is an ideal place to do it. Make sure you are putting a lot of consideration into the proper lighting and ventilation for your new hobby space.
- Guest or Family Bedroom: An unfinished basement can serve as an extra space for family or guests. If you want to make it an even more functional space for family or guests, you may want to consider your ability to add a small bathroom.
If you have always wanted to convert your unfinished basement into a usable space for your home, now is the time to do it! Our experts can walk you through options to consider, and design and build a plan that works for your budget and your lifestyle.