If you have an unfinished or finished basement, you have the option to add valuable living space to your home—whether you need an extra bedroom, theater, workout room, entertainment area, or any other flexible space. Whatever the motivation behind your basement renovation, a finished basement is an ideal extension to your home that not only adds convenience and flexibility but can also add resale value.
And while a finished basement is a sight to behold, finishing your basement is a big undertaking with a lot to consider. Beyond the necessary basement preparations that are required for finishing (i.e., waterproofing, layout, permits, etc.), there’s the fun part of deciding what features and amenities your basement should have. Here’s a closer look at what you can include in your finished basement to maximize the space and enhance its functionality:
What to consider including in your basement remodel
A wet bar
Wet bars are great for basements that you intend to entertain in, especially if you are a sports enthusiast. What items are synonymous with sports spectatorship? That’s right, food and drinks. A wet bar makes it convenient for you to serve guests without missing any action, and they are great for drawing people in and sparking conversations. Wet bars are also a stylish accessory that can keep guests around the area and out of your kitchen.
Add a kitchen to your basement and it becomes an entirely new, flexible space with the potential to serve as a guest or in-law suite. If you have the square footage, you’ll get long-term mileage out of adding a full kitchen, complete with a refrigerator, oven, microwave, full sink, garbage disposal, and even a dishwasher.
When finishing your basement, don’t overlook the important detail of lighting. Since basements rarely have much natural light, it makes it that much more important to create a lighting plan just like any other room in the house. But, you will likely need more. Recessed or slim disc lighting is recommended for all-over illumination. Undercabinet lights work well around food prep areas. Pendant lights can be hung above tables or areas that need a focused spotlight. Use dimmable lighting around the TV. Remember, you want your basement to have a warm and welcoming feel — not be dark and dreary. The right lighting is critical.
Egress window for the bedroom
When complete, your basement remodel should be stylish, functional and practical. But you also want to make sure that it is safe. In addition to testing radon levels and including a smoke detector in the finished space, if your basement includes a bedroom make sure you include an egress window. In fact, in Indiana, ensuring the availability of some sort of egress window or door is a state requirement for basement bedrooms. Egress windows essentially allow an additional point of exit aside from the main entry point to the basement, which can be life-saving in the event of an emergency.
A full bathroom with a shower is ideal, but even a half bath will suffice in a basement. Bathrooms are practical, especially if you intend for your basement to double as a living space where you entertain. You don’t want your guests or your household members to have to retreat to the ground floor level to use the restroom when nature calls. Bathrooms also add to your resale value.
Many homeowners are so zeroed in on maximizing the functional space in their finished basement that they lose sight of one key area: storage space. Remember, the original purpose of a functional basement was to house HVAC equipment and store household belongings, etc. With that being said, make sure to consider adding valuable storage space in your finished basement—for items like holiday decorations, sports equipment, bulk food items, etc.
A fitness room
When all is said and done, your health and fitness is a number one priority. Consider dedicating a separate room in your finished basement to fitness and exercise. Doing so can help you save on costly gym memberships and also provide a space where you and your family can work out on your own time and in your own personal space.
If you have kids, then you’re likely very familiar with the space needed to house all of their toys. Are you tired of stepping on Legos in your living room or tripping over dolls in your family room? While certain toys are appropriately stored in your kids’ bedrooms, a playroom can be a welcome addition to a finished basement. It can minimize clutter and provide a dedicated area for your kids to play, separate from the main living areas of your home.
A home office
If you’re like most Americans who take work home each night, or you have created a makeshift office in your bedroom or another corner of your house, then you may want to include a home office into your remodeling plans. Home offices can even double as a guest room to maximize the functionality of your living space. Bonus: you may even qualify for a special tax write-off if you incorporate a home office into your basement remodel.
Schedule a Virtual Home Consultation with Riverside
We’re all doing what we can and making the most of these challenging circumstances. Most of us at Riverside Construction are still working to create exciting new opportunities to help you solve challenges and obstacles with your home.
With the new shelter-in-place mandate and social distancing, you are likely spending even more time at home. Good news! You can still meet with a design and remodeling expert virtually:
- We’ll cover all the same material in a typical in-home consultation
- Anyone in your family can join the meeting where ever they are
- Using technology, we can still tour your space
- We’ll explain our design-build process and provide you with a rough budget estimate
For more information on what you can include in your basement remodel to maximize its functionality, contact us to schedule a virtual home consultation today!