THINGS TO KNOW ABOUT A BASEMENT REMODEL PROJECT
When you’re first planning your basement remodel, it’s helpful to treat it as any room you would above ground. This floor has tons of potential and how you design it will depend on your needs for your home. It can easily become the most popular spot in the home if remodeled in a way that addresses your needs.
WHAT TO INSPECT OR FIX BEFORE BEGINNING THE REMODEL PROJECT
When you’re dealing with moisture, it’s important to test this effectively before any remodel occurs. Test for it by taping two-foot squares of plastic sheets to the floor and walls. Leave it for a few weeks. If any condensation forms, the foundation is not properly seal. If droplets form up top, the basement requires a dehumidifier. Make sure that this is enough as it can create problems by drawing water through the walls of the foundation. Ensure that there is good drainage off the roof and away from the foundation too.
Look for rot or damage in rim and header joists, sill plate, wood-framed windows or floor joists by using an awl. Also, check if the floor joists are sagging by climbing a ladder until you’re eye level. Look across them to see if they are straight.
- Check your ventilation system to make sure there is no carbon monoxide buildup.
- Insulate pipes before you box them in. When they are still exposed, put foam insulation sleeves over hot water pipes to prevent any heat loss.
- Leave space around equipment whether washer, dryer, hot water heater or furnace. Two to three feet of clearance is the proper amount of space.
- Test for radon. Uncontrolled, it can expose your family to extreme levels of radiation. It’s best to hire a licensed radon contractor.
- Always put the main socializing area in a spot that has the most natural light.
- If you plan on adding bedrooms, they always should be at the perimeter as they need a window.
- The TV area can be in a dark space, which helps reduce glare on the scene.
- Consider scratch-resistant floating vinyl if you’re worried about moisture in your basement. It almost always has a 20-year warranty.
BENEFITS OF REMODELING YOUR BASEMENT
- It’s no secret that finishing your basement will be a good investment. It adds functionality and living space to the house as well as storage, which are all great elements when selling the house down the road.
- It is important to make sure that the basement is improved upon in many ways including light. Plan for windows and doors and make sure that these openings are cut before the work even begins. Hire a professional to make sure that the surrounding walls can take on the increased load before beginning the remodel.
- A finishing ceiling is also a must. An installed drywall ceiling is a great option, but this can flake off overtime. Remember to install the proper height, which is comparable to the same height as the lowest hanging pipe.
- Local building codes require that all windows are large enough for a firefighter in gear to get into a burning house through the basement windows and for all occupants to escape if the stairways are blocked. Consider this when planning for the size of the windows within your basement remodel design.