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Last modified: 2022-05-10 | Approximate reading time 4 mins
Basements today have become very valuable spaces within the home. Whether it’s a recreational space to relax or has extra bedrooms or storage space, making the best use out of your basement is ideal. An added plus to remodelling your basement is that it’s a great return on your investment, with the average return being anywhere from 50 to 75 percent.
The first step of any remodel, especially the basement, is to determine whether you will need any permits to carry out the work and to call someone in for an inspection to avoid finding problems too late. Before getting started on anything else, it’s important to keep in mind that any plumbing and electrical work should be done while the basement walls and floors are unfinished.
Basements are also prone to water seeping in and causing damage, so we prepared a guide on keeping your basement dry. Lastly, since finishing the basement can be a long process, it is crucial to set out a budget with your contractor.
By now you should know whether you’re starting with an unfinished basement or remodelling a basement which is finished for the most part. Starting with an unfinished basement is obviously the less expensive job as you don’t have to factor in demolishing what is already there. The cost of starting from scratch will be at least $8,400 to $16,800 once you’ve included carpeting, drywall, materials and labour. Demolishing a finished basement will cost you roughly $1,800 to $3,600 which will bring the total of your remodelling to at least $14,400.
One of the simplest, yet most important elements to consider is lighting. Being in the basement naturally means being subterranean and by extension a darker space. Therefore, installing the right kind of lighting will really help to liven up your newly renovated basement. Recessed lighting is a great option for those with low-hanging ceilings. Consult our guide on lightbulbs to learn more about this subject, but we would suggest compact fluorescent light bulbs over the traditional incandescent as they are very energy efficient and give off great light.
If you want a big open concept basement, then there won’t be much need for sectioning it off. However, if you want to create individual spaces here are some ideas on what to include:
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Basements are a great area to locate your washer and dryer in order to carve out a unique space for doing the laundry. Having the laundry room in the basement will keep the noise of the machines largely out of sight and out of mind. You can also easily install a utility sink that might seem out of place on the upper floor.
It’s always nice to give the kids a space to play that is carved out from the rest of your home. This is a great way for them to play safely and freely while getting their imaginations to run wild. For older ones, it can double as a gaming space while also being a great home theatre. This option will likely make everyone in the house frequent the basement.
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For anyone spending extended hours in their basement, having to climb to an upper level to use the restroom can be an inconvenience. You can also use this as an opportunity to experiment with the space. For instance, if you’ve been thinking about installing a heated floor, perhaps it would be best to try it out on your small basement bathroom first.
For those with lots of space to work with, installing an extra bedroom can be a great option. Perhaps you have guests often, an elderly parent or older child and having extra rooms will serve to accommodate anyone when the opportunity presents itself. Remember, if permitting allows it, you can transform part of your basement into a bachelor apartment and use it to generate income.
When thinking about transforming your basement for entertainment purposes, you should consider the fact that it may become the new hangout spot for you and your friends. If that is the case, installing a wet or dry bar can be a way to tie the space together with counter space and bar stools, giving the room a sense of openness and making it feel bigger. Perhaps you’re more of a wine connoisseur and would rather have a wine cellar to store your collection. Either option will leave you with a very unique conversation piece for guests.
When planning your remodel, remember that a finished basement will give you the highest enjoyment value for your dollar which is the perfect excuse to consider your basement’s potential. Of course, any work done should not just be for investment but also for your comfort and enjoyment. Always hire a trusted professional with references to ensure you’re getting the best work done.
*All prices indicated in this article are for information purposes only and are subject to change.
Author: David Ben-Zaken
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