Renovate Your Basement Like a Pro – tips & tricks

As a homeowner, you think about new ways to improve your home all the time.  There are many projects you want to accomplish to give yourself more space or to make it more comfortable for your guests. One of the most underrated places in the house to renovate happens to be a basement. It’s shame, though, because it can be turned into an amazingly functional room in a blink of the eye. Even though this is easier said than done given the amount of effort it requires, the results will be worth it! Moreover,  basement remodeling is one of the most effective ways of how to add value to your home. So,  let’s go through a handful of the ways to carry it out. 

Dream big but think practically

Think about the purpose of the room you will turn your basement into. What have you always wanted? Was it an extra bedroom, or maybe a game room? Or perhaps what you have always wanted is a home gym.  That way you wouldn’t have to run there after work and spend a lot of time driving. Do you need a place for your home office or music room by any chance? There are so many options, you just have to find the one that suits your needs and desires best. But while you are daydreaming, keep in mind features and light conditions your basement has. Don’t get carried away into some projects that will be too hard to execute followed by poor results. In addition, consulting professionals is always a way to go. Before you start to renovate your basement, however, make sure you have a clear vision.

Renovate your basement and turn it into music room, with drums and table
If you have always wanted a music room, a basement is an ideal solution

Pre-planning

Before you start with remodeling your basement, there are few boxes you need to check. First of all, you need to empty and clean your basement. Make sure you donate or recycle all the things you won’t be needing anymore. And as for the rest, you can always rent a storage unit and place them there. It’s really simple, you just need to google search the words ‘storage units near me‘ and pick the facility that meets your expectations. Also, there are a few things you should test and then repair if needed.

  • Make sure you do the moisture test, that will indicate whether your foundation is sealed and if your basement needs to be dehumidified.
  • Most noteworthy, check for insects and plant damage under your basement floors.
  • See if your floor is even and there aren’t any parts that are sagging.
  • Before you renovate your basement, test your basement’s air circulation system. The best way to do so is to hire professionals.

First, dry it up well

This is one of the crucial steps when you renovate your basement or when you want to know how to convert your garage to a room. So, if you have a damp or wet basement, you should fix it prior to any remodeling. Luckily, the majority of water-related problems can be remedied by grading the soil to slope away from the foundation or by adding or repairing gutters and downspouts. Unfortunately, if these steps don’t work, you’ll have to take more extreme measures. You may need to add exterior drain tile and waterproof the walls or add interior drain tile that empties into a sump basket with a pump. It is common sense eliminating water-related problems is time-consuming and expensive. But this is essential to prevent a moldy and ruined basement.

Plan your exits

Have you heard of building code? It’s a set of rules that specify the standards for constructed objects and it requires safe exit routes in case of an emergency, particularly in bedroom areas. More specifically, a common requirement is an opening window must be big enough to climb out of, and close enough to the ground. Sadly, this sometimes means cutting down the foundation to build a proper window. The best way to inform yourself about regulations is to check your home’s requirements with your local building department.

Orange facade with two windows
One of the main tasks is putting egress windows

Install the egress windows

One of the most important parts of those basement building codes is proper installing of egress windows. These are basement windows that both let in light and allow people to escape in case of an emergency. Having a livable basement requires these windows, so be prepared to expand existing windows and renovate your foundation to make room for them.

Measure, measure, measure

In order to renovate your basement properly, you need to know how much space you are working with. This is particularly important when we are talking about the height. As many local regulations of turning a basement into a livable room or rooms require, the basement must be at least 7 feet tall. For this reason, make sure to consult local building codes.

Inspect wiring and plumbing

If you don’t have them already, you will probably need to add plumbing and wiring to your basement. Start by checking on existing systems to see what upgrades need to be done. Also, be aware that you will need a permit for this work.
Bedroom with king size bed, table and lamp
Converting your basement into livable space adds great values to your property

Your home value will go through the roof!

Although you are maybe not considering that now, adding the value to your home is very important. Apart from caring for your house and improving it, this is one of the reasons you should invest in it. Bear in mind the best investments are those that will add value to it when you want to move or place it on the market. Remodeling your basement and converting it to the livable space is a project that will surely have a high return. And even if you don’t want to sell your house right away, you’ll have another high functioning room in the house.

Renovate your basement like a pro

As you can see, the best way to renovate your basement like a pro is to inform yourself properly. Also, the most popular way to do something like a pro is to hire one! If you have some experience in remodeling, the DIY project could be something you would enjoy. But if you don’t, better hire someone who knows how to do it with ease. Dream, investigate and execute. Good luck, and enjoy your new basement!

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