Things to Remember When Renovating Your Basement
By now, you’re probably aware that we’re big advocates for scheduling and completing basement renovations when the weather gets cooler— ie. fall and winter. But if not, we recommend taking this time to check out our past blog post, “Basement Renovations Can Be Done in The Winter", before continuing your read. In our previous blog post, we discussed why basement renovations are great cold-weather projects as well as a few pointers for perfecting your project.
This time around, we’re here to discuss a list of items and tasks we recommend every homeowner considers when renovating their basement. Some of these things will be design features, while others will be less exciting, but equally as important, structural tasks and additions that can make all the difference when it comes to creating the perfect lower-level space for your family.
Continue reading below for the list of items and tasks, and as always, if you have any questions about basement renovations, home additions, custom homes or other home renovations, we encourage you to reach out to us by phone or email and one of our team members would be more than happy to help.
Basement Renovation Must-Haves
Starting a basement renovation from bare-bones is always ideal. It allows us to address foundation problems and create a water barrier between the walls and the floor. This will help ensure your basement reno stays dry all year long and will make sure all that hard work and money doesn’t go to waste. Even if your basement is finished, it can sometimes be a beneficial step to strip it back to the foundation walls and concrete flooring and ensure everything is watertight before beginning to frame. This is especially true in century homes or other older builds.
Whether you plan to turn your basement into the ultimate movie lounge, kid playroom or sports bar, we strongly recommend investing in additional soundproofing. Sure, insulation does a good job of this, but extra soundproofing can be a head saver when the kids have friends over, or the game is on. The last thing you want to be doing when hanging out with friends or family is worrying about keeping other members of your family up.
It’s no secret that basements can often feel short or shallow. But believe it or not, in most cases, this is the result of poor lighting choices rather than the basement itself. That’s why we recommend recessed lighting. It maximizes the headroom without leaving your basement feeling dark, dreary or like a dungeon. Sure, invest in some hanging light fixtures for a bar top or second dining area to create a beautiful design feature, but we firmly believe that the majority of your basement lighting should be recessed.
No matter how dry or insulated we make your home, some homes are plagued with cold basements (we're looking at you, century homes). And sure, directing your central air system to the basement will supply it with some heat, but why not take it that extra step and install heated flooring throughout? This will help make your basement feel more like a cozy lounge and make it more enjoyable for the whole family. Note: Some homes are prone to flooding no matter how watertight they may be. And for these homes, we recommend steering clear of any floor heating systems.
For the homeowners who may not want to splurge for heated flooring, but who still want their basement as warm as possible, we recommend upgrading your subfloor to an insulated option that uses foam rather than the typical plastic. Not only will an insulated subfloor help keep your basement moisture-free, but it’s also been known to raise the temperature of your finished floor by up to 5 degrees. It will even make your floor more comfortable by providing additional cushioning and improve the overall soundproofing of your basement.
We've seen it time and time again, families create the ultimate basement play area for their kids and then once they've grown up, the parents are left wishing for something like a basement bar. If this sounds like it could end up being you, why not invest in the rough-in plumbing for that bar now? Our skilled designers and carpenters can tuck it away in cabinetry so that it's not an eyesore and then once you're ready to transform your basement into the ultimate bar, it saves you from having to rip up the walls and floor to have the plumbing brought in.
Open Floor Plan
Just like how basements are known for being short and shallow, they’re also notorious for feeling small. But they don’t have to be. Working with one of our skilled project managers/designers, we’ll help you maximize the space in your basement and create an open floor plan that feels roomy. We’ll ensure you get the rooms you want whether they’re for a spare bedroom, home gym, home office or kids-only space, but we’ll also make sure overall space is maximized so that your basement feels as open, airy and inviting as the rest of your home.
Storage is a family's best friend and what better place to put it than in the basement? Typically, most homeowners dedicate their basement to storage, but with the help of our designers, we'll help you create all the storage you need without taking away too much of your valuable family space. Using built-in cabinetry and other storage tricks, we’ll create the ultimate basement that balances storage and functional family space perfectly.
Those are just a few of the must-haves we find are most important to homeowners. And regardless of whether you want to create the coolest kid playroom, ultimate sports bar, or your own personal movie theatre, we strongly suggest working with a team of trained professionals, like ourselves, to ensure everything from permits and best practices to optimized storage and the perfect floor plan are handled and implemented by experts. Our team of designers, project managers and carpenters have years of experience renovating basements of all shapes and sizes and have gained the knowledge needed to ensure every basement renovation they handle lasts a lifetime.