Developing Your Basement: Add Value and Living Space

Home School Building 101

Basements no longer have to be cool, damp, dark spaces where you store your unused belongings. Many people are developing their basements into warm and welcoming living spaces. Whether you want to turn your basement into a recreation room, an office, a spare bedroom or gym, developing your basement not only provides you with extra space in your home but it also increases its value. With a bit of handiness and a plan, you can easily do some of the basement development yourself, although it’s always a good idea to get some assistance from a professional for the electrical wiring and plumbing. Follow these easy tips for a seamless basement transformation!

1. Lighting and Ceilings

The first step is always to create a plan and a layout of your space. Once you’ve decided what kind of room you’d like developed in your basement, you’ll need to determine the kind of ceiling and lighting you'll install.
For basements with a low ceiling height, you can simply apply panels and paint it. For higher ceilings, consider installing a suspended ceiling for added functionality. Drop ceilings have become increasingly popular over the last few years, as they come in a variety of colors and styles to match your living space.
Lighting goes hand in hand with your ceiling, as your ceiling will depend on the lighting you choose. Recessed lighting is perfect for those smaller spaces, as it doesn’t take up any extra room on the floor. It also provides a comfortable ambiance, perfect for family and recreational rooms.

2. Flooring

Next you’ll need to choose the kind of flooring you’d like in your new space. Determining the most appropriate flooring will depend on the purpose of your new room. For example, if you are transforming your basement into a playroom for your children, durable carpeting is an excellent choice as it is soft, yet protective. If you are developing a chic and modern office space, you might consider installing hardwood or laminate. Wood flooring is an excellent way to bring warmth to a typically cold basement.

3. Storage

Many people like to use their basements as extra storage space. Since you’ll be turning your basement into living space, you can maximize your storage capacity by installing built in shelving. Get creative by installing drawers underneath the basement stairs or by putting shelving in the closets.

4. Building Codes and Permits
There a quite a few details that come along with developing your basement but it's important to remember that finishing an unfinished basement does require a permit. You should take the time to familiarize yourself with the appropriate building codes and all the requirements for the needed permits. The process may seem like a hassle at first, but it will help protect your investment and keep your family home safe.

Developing your basement is a great way to add extra living space to your home, while also increasing its value. From a playroom to a granny suite – the possibilities of your newly transformed basement are truly endless!