How to Plan a Basement Remodel
A basement remodel typically involves more than just painting or installing new flooring. You may need to plumb and wire the space, add egress windows, and build walls according to specific framing and spacing codes.
Remember that you must work around load-bearing walls and essential systems like the water heater, furnace, and electrical panel. Be sure to ask your contractor about these factors before you start tearing down walls.
A basement remodel is a major project that should be given professional attention. Hiring contractors is generally a good idea, as they can take care of everything from hiring electricians and plumbers to obtaining permits and making sure your renovations are up to code.
A wet bar is another popular choice for basements and can add to your home’s entertainment value. You’ll need a countertop, sink, and faucet to create this feature, as well as drywall and paint. Expect to spend about $500 on average for these supplies.
If your basement is going to be a bedroom, you’ll need an egress window. This is a mandatory upgrade that can cost between $2,500 and $3,750. Adding this window is an investment, but research shows that it will pay off in your home’s resale value. You’ll also need to factor in the cost of flooring. A wood floor can run up to $15 per square foot, while a carpet costs less than $10.
The planning process is where you determine your goal for the space. Is it a new family room with a big screen TV and comfy couches, or a home theater? Either way, you need to have a plan in place and know how much you’re willing to spend on it.
Before you get started on drywall, make sure that your plan includes addressing any plumbing, electrical wiring, HVAC or other mechanical issues. You also want to ensure that the basement is safe for occupants. That may mean adding a second egress window to allow everyone in the household to escape easily and quickly during an emergency.
Next, decide what fixtures you’ll install. Remember that you’ll probably have to replace them in the future, so consider fixtures that can impress guests and withstand tweenage horseplay, at-home gyms, and whittling hobby dust.
A basement remodel is a great opportunity to dress up the look of your home. You can hide ductwork and ceiling pipes by adding a drop ceiling, add character with a tall wainscot or try unique wall texture options like mixed woods. A good interior designer can also recommend ways to make your space more efficient and enjoyable to use.
If your basement will be used as a bedroom, local codes may require egress windows or hinged outside access doors. This is a safety feature that allows for a quick and easy escape if there is a fire in your home.
If you plan to have guests stay in your basement, it’s a smart idea to create a small kitchenette and bathroom area for them to use. This will make them feel more at home and it will save you from having to run out and buy them food when they come over. This is a simple but thoughtful upgrade that will add value to your home.
Before beginning a Basement remodel, it’s important to carefully examine every square inch of the space. This includes looking for cracks in walls and floors, water puddling or slow leaks, suspicious electrical or plumbing issues, and other problems that might not be obvious to the untrained eye.
This is also the time to declutter your Basement. You may be surprised by how much stuff you have stored in that cold concrete space!
Once all the necessary repairs are made, the drywall is installed. This is when you get to finally start seeing that Basement remodel take shape.
During this phase, it’s important to be aware of the different types of flooring available. Think about how you will use your Basement space and select flooring that fits those needs. Consider durability, comfort levels, and even cost. Also, keep in mind that installing certain flooring may require a permit. Check with your city to find out more.