“Homeowners looking to transform their living space without making changes to their home’s structure tend to find that refinishing the lower level is the most practical course of action,” said Tom Lawler, designer with Callen Construction. “Refinishing your basement gives homeowners the freedom to completely revamp the space and significantly increase their home’s value.”
According to HomeAdvisor, the return on investment for a finished basement project can be as much as 69%. Taking this into account, homeowners who are contemplating remodeling their lower level should understand what’s involved in the process, why it’s a smart economical decision, how it can create a multi-functional space, and how it maximizes a home’s potential.
Before remodeling a basement, it’s helpful to have a clear understanding of what is normally involved with this process. Frequently, refinishing a basement entails installing new flooring, putting up drywall, and enclosing exposed pipes or ductwork. On top of that, it is necessary to pay particularly close attention to ceiling height, electrical wiring, access, plumbing and ventilation requirements, along with compulsory fire escape options. “Keep in mind that although there are a number of other ways to optimize the space, these are the most basic and common aspects that are addressed with nearly all basement refinishing projects,” Tom said.
Often times, homeowners looking to refinish their basement are doing so to increase the amount of livable space in their home. “This is highly strategic because it typically saves money and time, considering an actual home addition equivalent in size to a lower level remodel is usually costlier and the project completion timeline lengthier,” said Tom. “Additionally, it’s an extremely sensible option because not only does it create a more aesthetically pleasing atmosphere out of an existing space, but the standard of living for all residents noticeably improves as well because there is more usable space for them to live in and enjoy.”
Some homeowners beginning the basement refinishing process have a specific game plan in mind as far as its new purpose or function, while others may need inspiration. Those undecided individuals need not worry as one of the defining characteristics of basements is their ability to be extremely adaptable. A finished basement could serve as a bar and lounge area, a playroom for children, a game room complete with a billiard table and a dartboard, a home theater, a work station, a gym, the laundry room, a bedroom, or a combination of any of these. “In other words, while other rooms in your home, such as the bathroom or mudroom, play clearly established roles, the basement is typically a multi-functional space, meaning it can be designed to accommodate multiple needs and wants,” he said. “With a countless number of options to choose from, you are only limited by your own creativity.”
Basements have far more potential than simply serving as storage lockers. “When you don’t take full advantage of a room or space in your home, you’re often left with an unutilized space that serves a limited purpose,” Tom said. “A home is a major investment, so it’s important to get the most out of it. Plus, there is nothing quite like the great sense of fulfillment you feel when you maximize an existing space, knowing you increased your home’s livable square footage. Not to mention, when it comes time to sell, your home will be far more attractive to prospective buyers when it’s equipped with a fully finished basement.”
If you’re a homeowner looking for an affordable way to increase your home’s market value, you may find it useful to think about refinishing your basement. “From an entertainment room to a home office, the ways in which you can transform the lower level of your home are diverse and plentiful,” said Tom. “Refinishing your basement allows you to express yourself while making the most out of the home’s living space. Needless to say, your family and friends will also appreciate your custom basement, and they’re sure to help contribute to many priceless memories for years to come.”