Basements are sometimes areas of your home that go overlooked. They are typically used as storage areas; however, with the right makeover, they can be transformed into something that your entire family can enjoy.
You can renovate to create additional living space or a small indoor game room where you can play table tennis with your loved ones.
Benefits of Remodeling Your Basement
The utilization of your basement as additional living space is not the only advantage of upgrading it. You may also receive some additional benefits from it.
1. Improves House Value
A well-remodeled basement means that the house is in good health and is properly maintained. This makes it lucrative for people willing to buy a good house at a fair price. Remodeling your basement could increase the house value by up to 20 percent.
2. A Good Source of Side Income
After you remodel your basement and make a small living space in it, you can put it on rent and earn a few extra dollars. Soon enough, you will make up the money you spent on remodeling and start making a profit.
3. Keeps Your House Healthy
There have been countless reports about basement pipe leakages leading to far bigger damages around the house that become extremely costly to repair.
This problem can easily be avoided if you remodel your basement and keep it in top condition.
Things to Consider Before Remodeling
Now that you know the benefits of remodeling, here are some important things you need to keep in mind before attempting the whole procedure.
Otherwise, you may find yourself in much bigger trouble than you began with. Making the right decision is vital since it affects the overall condition of your house.
1. Control the Moisture
Since the basement is hardly visited by anyone and has multiple water pipes running through it, the chances of excess moisture being here is high. So before you start any remodeling procedure, you need to take care of that.
You can do this by basement waterproofing. To achieve this, check for leaks in any of the pipes in your basement and fix them immediately. Then use air dehumidifiers to remove any remaining moisture. Let the basement dry for a few days, and you are good to go.
2. Check the Building Permits
Before you start the process, you need to check what permits you have, since you need to inspect the space and plan what you want to do with it.
If you are unable to inspect your basement by yourself, you can get in touch with the county clerk. They will explain what permits your basement has and how you can inspect the present condition of your basement.
3. Waterproof the House
We talked about waterproofing the basement before, but that was before you were remodeling. You also need to consider the condition of the water pipes during the remodeling procedure.
If there was a leak before, you could simply call a plumber and fix it. But after you remodel, fixing the leaks will not be as easy. The pipes might also get damaged during remodeling.
To ensure that water leaks and spills do not occur, strengthen the existing water pipes and waterproof the entire water supply line of your house.
4. Check the Electrical System Manually
Since you are completely remodeling your basement, you need to follow the electric code manual provided by the state in order to properly maintain the electric supply.
This is necessary because, in most houses, basements are used for connecting water pipes from the house to the local water source. If electric lines are not connected properly, it could cause a major accident. Your basement electric line will require a ground fault circuit interrupter GFCI.
5. Hire a Contractor
Some states may allow you to remodel your own basement, and you can show off your DIY creativity. But other states require you to hire a professional contractor. It is illegal to do it by yourself in those states.
Often, whether you have permission to do it by yourself or not, it is best to let some contractors do it for you. Although you do not have the freedom of adding whatever you want, they will ensure that the basement is remodeled perfectly and safely.
Since they are professionals, it is safe to say that they have more experience in remodeling basements.
6. The Purpose of the Basement
Perhaps the most important thing you need to consider is the overall purpose. You need to decide whether you want to use it as an extra living space, an additional storage space, a place for rent, or even a safe zone.
Depending on the purpose of the basement, you need to remodel accordingly. Your unfinished basement has more potential than you think. You can turn it into a workout space, an extra bedroom, a library, or a game zone. But first, you need to plan it out.
7. Create a Plan for the Walls
While remodeling, you need to understand that the walls are one of the most vital parts of your basement. Not only do they make the basement look more pleasing, but they can increase the versatility of the space.
For example, if you install separate walls with proper electric wiring, you can add electric sockets to the house and have a stable source of electricity.
Since the water lines will be going underneath the wall, your basement will look similar to other interior rooms. Instead of using concrete as walls, it is better if you use non-rusting, hardened sheets.
8. Check the Heating and the Cooling System
If you are remodeling your basement with the purpose of turning it into a living space, then you need to plan the heating system for the winter seasons and a cooling system for the hot weather.
Since your basement is not likely to have windows, it may feel cold even during the summer. You need to have a good heating system in action here. And for those extremely hot summer days, a little bit of cooling would not harm anyone. So a moderate cooling system should be enough.
Additionally, since moisture may be a big issue here as wind will not pass through your basement much often, it is best that you have a dehumidifier in your basement as well.
9. A Separate Doorway
Your basement should also have a separate doorway since it will no longer be used as just an extra storage space. But you should not do these things by yourself.
You need to check the building code and see if constructing a doorway is even possible. If it is possible, then you can hire a professional to construct a separate doorway which will make your basement much more accessible.
However, if constricting a doorway is not possible, check if it is possible to install a separate window. This will at least allow sunlight in and keep the basement bright.
10. Separate Flooring Plan
Just like a separate plan for the walls, you need to have a separate plan for the floors of your basement. Do you want to use hardwood or ceramic tiles? The choice is yours, and it depends on the overall setting of your basement.
Since the basement will have more moisture, it would be best to avoid hardwood floorings for your house. Tiles would be a great option. But if you prefer to use wood, try using laminated wood flooring. This will remove all the weaknesses of pure wood but give you the same texture and feel.
Things to Avoid While Remodeling
Just as there are some things you need to consider, there are some things you need to absolutely avoid before remodeling your basement. They are:
- Avoid using any form of wood. If you do, cover it up with either metal sheets or plastic
- Avoid fiberglass insulation. Since we mentioned that the basement will be colder than the rest of your house, it may create mold in the fiberglass insulations.
- Do not go with whatever the contractor says. Sit with them and discuss the overall design. If you do not like their design, then you would enjoy staying there as well once it is done.
As long as you know what you’re doing and what you want to accomplish, remodeling your home’s basement is never a terrible decision. Since many important systems pass through the basement, it is a particularly important location.
Be very cautious and take into account all of the crucial factors mentioned above. This article and tips will also help you feel content with your home.