By Anita Alvarez
A new remodeling project is so exciting! There are so many fun elements to think about. Choosing colors and new furniture and all the little details to make a space just right can get your head spinning in anticipation.
- Improved resale value. It isn’t realistic to expect to recoup every dollar you invest in your basement remodel. However, the general consensus is that you can anticipate a return of about 66%.
- Added space. There are many options for what you can do with your finished basement space. The most common are playrooms, in-law suites, home theaters, and family rooms.
Before you get too far into the fun stuff, there are some things you need to think about first.
It will take a fair amount of planning ahead of time to turn your basement into the useful addition you desire it to be.
Take these factors into account in your pre-planning phase:
Find out if you need a permit.
It’s possible that you may not need any kind of permit at all, but it’s in your best interest to be safe rather than sorry. It can be a costly mistake if you find out too late a permit was needed. The type of permit you will need to ask about is a construction permit. The rules and regulations for construction permits vary from state to state as well as from city to city. There are many determining factors including zoning codes, the scale of the remodel, and what type of structure your home is. Your first step will be to contact your local government agency and find the department of planning and development.
Assess the dryness of the basement.
One of the biggest factors that can derail your whole remodel is water in the basement. If you have dealt with a flooded basement in the past, you will need to take measures to identify the source and rectify the situation before you can continue the project. Consider waterproofing and installing a sump pump if you don’t already have one. Sometimes it can be as simple as making some changes to your outdoor landscaping to route the water away from the house.
Choose the right kind of flooring.
Wood floors and carpeting are poor choices for a basement, even if it has been waterproofed. These options prove to be much harder to replace should the basement flood, a drain backup, or some other unforeseen event arise. A better choice is a laminate or vinyl interlocking tile system. They can be removed and dried out if there would happen to be a moisture issue. These materials come in large arrays of colors and styles. There are a lot of good options out there!
Your Happy Place
Some forethought goes a long way and will save you time and money when you’re ready to launch a basement refinishing project. Once you have all your planning ducks in a row you’ll be able to get to the fun of decorating and ultimately enjoying your brand new space.