If you need more room for your family, but you don't want to move to a new home, then finishing your basement could be the best option. Depending on the size of your basement, you could add another bedroom and bathroom or a large family room. Finishing a basement could be less expensive than adding on a room, and an addition might not be possible if you don't have the space on your property. Here are a few things to know before you start.
Correct Problems With Condensation And Leaking
You want the basement to be dry and free from worries about flooding and dampness before you finish it. Even if your basement hasn't flooded before, it's a good idea to let a contractor look at it to see if you need to add waterproofing measures. A rare storm could cause a flood that ruins all of your belongings unless you have a drainage system or sump pump in place.
Learn What's Needed To Comply With Codes
When you turn a basement into a living space, it has to comply with building codes just like any other room in your home. However, your basement may not have windows or there might not be enough clearance between the ceiling and floor. These problems have to be addressed by the contractor and they could add to the final cost of finishing the basement.
Design For Maximum Use Of Space
You'll want a good plan before you undertake a basement finishing job. Since you want to finish the basement to add more room for your family, you'll also want to maximize the available space. Talk to a designer about the best way to get the most living space if you want to add a basement, bathroom, family room, and storage space. The rooms may be small, but when they are designed properly, you can pack a lot into a small area.
Consider Ventilation And Climate Control
The basement will need a climate control system for comfort and to keep humidity and condensation in the best range. Consider how often you'll use the space when you think about the best way to heat it. If you'll use the finished basement for a family room, you may not need it as warm as you would if you plan to use it for a bedroom where someone will spend a lot of time.
There are several options for heating and cooling a basement. The first step is to talk to a contractor about using your existing HVAC unit if it can handle the load. If that's not practical then you might want a portable AC that you can vent to the outside and space heaters. A pellet stove or gas fireplace might be other options. You might even consider a new ductless heat pump just for the basement. Talk to your contractor about the options suitable for your basement since you'll need a way to vent to the outside, and you want a system that will be safe to use.
Finishing the basement could be a wise investment for your home since it will save you from moving, and it may even add value to your home. Your family will have more room to spread out and have private space. The work involved is worth it when you can transform wasted space into a living area your family can enjoy.