Apr 062009

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Finishing Your Basement

Make your basement a living space
If you go through the effort of finishing, a basement can be viewed as “found” living space in your house. If an unfinished basement or cellar can be renovated to become living space, you have in essence increased the square footage of your house without moving. A renovated basement will supply you with extra comfort and convenience and will increase the market value of your house.

Finishing a foundation makes always sense
Even if your basement is already finished, finishing again may still make sense. A previously ignored basement home entertainment may be transformed into that wine cellar you need, or a rarely used recreation room for the kids may turn into the spare bedroom room you’ve always wanted. In the lucky event that your basement has already been finished either by the previous owner, or by you many years ago, much of the work and expense can be removed from the new project.

Is your foundation dry?
It is vital to be confident that your basement will always be dry before you begin your basement renovation. Start your project by inspecting the foundation walls, with close attention to the corners and the area where the walls meet the floor. Engage a specialist to fill any cracks in the foundation walls you may see, and it is an excellent investment to have the walls waterproofed before you begin your project.

Cover the walls
No matter what manner of area you are remodeling, you must cover the cement or block walls. To cover the foundation walls, it is probably a good idea to hire a dry wall contractor who will stud out the walls and install the drywall. Spackled, sanded and painted sheetrock will immediately instill in your unfinished basement space a warmer and more inviting look.

Build an attractive floor for your foundation
You can think about having your contractor build an insulated floor covering the cement slab; assuring that you can keep the finishing basement cozier and dryer. The cement basement slab can be overlaid with linoleum or ceramic tiles, or it may be carpeted. A well-constructed and beautiful floor gives a remodeled basement the appearance of being an integral part of the home, not only a postscript.

Using the correct lighting
Basements are by their very nature dingy, because they usually provide little or no natural lighting. Using the correct lighting is critical to a successful basement renovation. What we want to accomplish with basement lighting is to cause the user to remain unaware that he is in a space without windows, or at best, equipped with insufficiently sized windows.
If the basement is partially below grade, try to install as large a quantity of windows as practical to maximize natural light. Indirect lighting is the most effective way to light a basement, since it gives the space a more spacious feel, and gives the impression of higher ceilings. If the basement is completely below grade, the homeowner should use as much lighting as possible to avoid having the normally low-ceilinged basement feel like a cave.

Let your imagination roam free.
Since your basement is essentially a gift of, let your imagination roam free. If your budget can stand it, you can switch some cool, damp storage room into a wine cellar, a home entertainment room, a cozy den, a home office – and enhance the value of your home in doing so.

Frank Sarntarpia
Find info on kitchen remodeling ideas and all about advantages of solar energy.

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 Posted by at 3:24 am