Many homeowners see their basement as a dark, damp, and uninviting space where they simply store decorations and exercise equipment; however, it doesn’t have to be this way. With a little bit of work, you can easily transform your basement into a guest apartment, a rec room, or additional living space. The options for what you can do with your basement are only limited by your budget and your imagination. In fact, finishing or renovating your basement is one of the easier and more affordable ways to add livable square footage to your home. Additionally, finishing your basement is a good way to add value to your home, as these projects provide a great return on investment.
Yet, if your basement is currently used as a storage space, you may find yourself wondering how to turn it into a livable space. When faced with such a large project, you may feel overwhelmed and unsure where to start. Fortunately, taking a few simple steps to plan your remodel can help to make the project go a lot smoother. To help get you started, here is a look at a few things that you should consider when finishing a basement in Minneapolis.
Make Sure Water Won’t Be a Problem
Unfortunately, there is a reason basements have a reputation for being damp, as it is not uncommon for moisture to seep in through your basement’s concrete foundation and walls. Before you begin work on your basement, it is then critical that you ensure that you take steps to seal it against moisture so that dampness and flooding won’t be a problem. One of the first things that you will need to do is make sure that your gutters and drainage systems are properly directing water away from your home. You do not want water running up against your home when it rains, as this can lead to water infiltration.
Before working on your basement, you should also consider having it looked at by a professional who can look for and fix any cracks in your basement’s walls or foundation. You will also want to make sure that you have a good sump pump installed (if you don’t already have one), as this can help limit damage should your basement flood. Taking these precautions can help to ensure that you do not struggle with mold and moisture issues in your remodeled basement.
Decide How You Want to Use The Space
Of course, before you start swinging sledgehammers, you should take some time to consider how you will be using this space, as this will affect the design and layout of your finished basement. You may want to consider how your basement could help better meet your family’s needs. Do you currently have enough living space? Or would an extra bedroom, bathroom, and living room be helpful by allowing your family to spread out? A finished basement can help to add much-needed practical space to your home.
Alternatively, you may decide that you want to do something fun with your basement such as adding a game room. Since basements tend to be dark, this would also be the ideal place to add a home theater if you have always wanted one. Before you start work on your basement, take some time to measure the space you have and come up with a design for your basement that will best meet your family’s needs.
Set a Realistic Budget
Once you decide what you want to do with your basement remodeling, your next step should be to create a realistic budget. Take a moment to decide what you can realistically spend on this project, and break down where this money will go. Planning ahead of time how much you will spend on things like flooring, furniture, and lighting can help to prevent you from going overboard. The last thing you want to do is buy expensive flooring and not have enough money left in your budget to finish your basement remodeling.
When setting a budget for your basement remodel, you will want to first find out how much your home is currently worth, and what comparable homes in your neighborhood with finished basements are selling for. You want to make sure that you do not overspend, as you would run the risk of not seeing the return on investment you were hoping for if you plan on selling your home in the near future. Of course, if you see this as your forever home, resale value may not matter as much to you, in which case it would make sense to design your basement in a way that best suits your family’s needs regardless of your home’s value.
Make Lighting a Priority
One of the more common reasons that people do not take advantage of their basement space is because basements tend to be dark. This is particularly true in homes that do not have a walkout basement, as there may be limited natural light if there is any at all. This makes basements the darkest part of many homes, which can make it difficult to turn them into light, livable spaces. You should then make lighting a priority as you begin designing your finished basement. If possible, see if you can add any additional basement windows. Of course, you will want to work with a skilled contractor to ensure that the surrounding walls can handle the increased structural load of additional windows. You can also use a combination of light fixtures to ensure that you have as much lighting in your basement as possible. Combining recessed lighting in the ceiling with floor and table lamps throughout your basement can ensure that the space is as well lit as the rest of your home.
Consider Enlisting Professional Help
Even if you take the time to plan out your basement remodeling, you may quickly find yourself in over your head if you do not have much experience in home renovation. In order to ensure that your project leaves you with the dream basement you have always wanted, you may want to consider hiring a contractor who can help turn your dream into a reality. An experienced contractor will know what needs to be done to turn a basement remodeling into a livable space, including ensuring that your project meets local building codes and has sufficient egress windows. If you are unsure how you want to style your finished basement, your contractor can even help you find an interior designer who can create the ideal basement space to meet your family’s needs.
If you are considering basement remodeling, feel free to contact us to learn more about how we can help to ensure this project goes smoothly.