Finished basements offer families an additional living space in their home. Whether you’re looking to create an entertainment/theater area, additional rooms and bathrooms, or just a quiet space to hold your personal office, the different functions of a finished basement all need to be tackled similarly. The following are the important elements to consider when looking to finish your basement, and keep it usable for years to come.
- Lighting: Whether you have access to natural light, or need to install a lighting system, creating ample vision in your basement is key. Most basements don’t have a lot of natural light, so make sure to place things that you need more visibility in the areas where there is some shine. Likewise, approach any installed lighting elements based on what you’re creating in your basement. For example, if you’re putting in a theater, you wont need as much bright lighting, where as a home office would require more. Several options for energy efficient lighting are available for basements today.
- Height: Typically, your ceiling will be the most important factor in determining what you can and cannot do with a finished basement. If you’re looking to put in a home gym, you’ll need to make sure you have enough room to properly exercise. Likewise, your ceiling will house most of your wires and connections throughout the basement, so make sure to take coverage into consideration. Any coverage that is created to hide wires and other elements may make your basement lower by as much as a foot.
- Entrances and Exits: Most building codes will require you to have an additional exit route for your renovated or finished basement. Many people chose to put in window wells for the easiest additional route out of their basement. Likewise, make sure to properly design your renovations around the entrance to your basement. Make sure that stairs drop into an open area, in order to move objects freely in and out of the basement.
- Preservation: When it comes to ensuring your new space will be livable over time, it’s important to instill a few precautions. Basements are bound to flood, so it’s crucial that you chose a flooring that is suitable for water. Make sure floor drains are surrounded around your basement, and create proper ventilation for bathrooms and kitchens. With finished basements that are used as living spaces, we advise that dehumidifiers should be installed and running, in order to keep moisture levels down.
However you plan on renovating your ample space below, make sure you’re following all the necessary steps to make it an enjoyable and livable space for you and your family.