How to Plan Your Basement Renovations
How and where to get more space without moving house? Where is this magic wand?
House renovation experts recommend not pushing outward and building an addition, but looking inward in empty gloomy space downstairs where you’ve been storing old furniture, clothes, tools, and broken toys. Yes, you’re not mistaken, this is your basement.
Discover some of the basics to consider before turning your basement into a fully functional living space.
- Enemy #1
Moisture is the factor that disqualifies most basements; with significant signs of moisture, your basement can’t be finished. The area should be completely dry and moisture-free. Treat minor moisture problems with water-lock paint and seal cracks with special caulking. Ensure that basement walls and ceilings are properly sealed and waterproofed. Creating a perfectly dry finished basement should be your number-one priority.
- What will it be used for?
The way you’ll use finished basement dictates how extensive improvements need to be. Set realistic project goals that won’t bust your budget.
- Install walls
Walls don’t have structural value in finished basement; however, they separate the area, enhance temperature control, make it easier to run electrical wires and provide spaces to install receptacles. Choose steel studs that don’t rot and possess perfect dimensions even for amateur home renovators. Besides, electrical wires are easily run through steel studs’ pre-bored holes.
Provide a certain number of electrical outlets required by code. Installing walls is a convenient way to run electrical services.
- Heating and cooling
Consider possible basement heating options for staying warm and providing a well-insulated system for your underground room. If you have a pre-installed heating system that uses forced-air, extend it into the finished basement for additional heat. However, qualified experts should do this ductwork properly. Without appropriate adjustment finished basement end up having stale air in the rooms above and cold basement area.
The exit point besides the doorway (egress) is an essential consideration if you’re planning additional basement bedroom. Carefully check local building codes what kind of egress point you need. Consider a sizable window to fulfill this requirement.
- Good lighting
Low ceilings, lack of natural light make basements dark and gloomy. So, the utmost importance of your basement renovation project is a layered lighting plan and proper installation. Consider appropriate ceiling lights –recessed or cove lighting, track lighting or surface mounted spots. Think of task and ambient basement lighting. Think of a mix of pot, table, floor lamps and wall sconces.