Want to quickly increase the square footage of your home by up to 50%? Finish your basement! At Green Remodeling, we’ve seen a lot basements – finished and unfinished – and we almost always find that unfinished basements just aren’t very useful. Sure, they’ve got plenty of room for storage, but most people only need a storage space with the footprint of a large walk-in closet. If you think you’re ready to convert your basement into the amazing guest suite, entertainment room, bar, gym or game room you know it could be, here are 8 things you should know before you build.
Moisture is the enemy.
With any subterranean space, particularly around Atlanta, certain measures must be taken to safeguard against humidity and groundwater moisture. You should check for water issues in your basement before beginning the planning process. Inside, any small cracks, puddles or leaks should be addressed immediately. Outside, the ground should be properly graded away from your home’s foundation.
Install a Vapor Barrier.
When it comes to preventing basement dampness, a vapor barrier on the walls and floors gets the job done. It’s a good idea to lay down a barrier for a day or two, then check it to judge exactly how much moisture is coming through from the outside.
Offset your living space.
Even with a strong vapor barrier, moisture can still be an issue. Offsetting slightly from the original wall using wood or metal strips to create a new frame can further protect your basement from water damage and uncomfortable humidity.
Don’t skimp on insulation.
Insulation will help control the temperature inside your basement and may also add a layer of moisture control. Besides that, it may help “soundproof” the finished room. We can help you select an insulation type that will serve all these purposes and last for years and years.
Insulate the ceiling, too.
Ceiling insulation keeps upstairs noise such as footfall and kitchen conversations from ruining your home theater experience or your ability to work if you wish to design a new home office. Even light footsteps on upstairs floors can seem impossibly loud when heard through uninsulated ceilings.
Consider unconventional building materials.
Depending on how you bought your home, the basement may be the only space where everything can be finished exactly to your personal taste. Tile, natural stone or luxury vinyl surfaces will add a lot of character and warmth to your space. Don’t think you have to draw the line at drywall and carpet!
Have an open space instead of separate rooms.
You can save a lot of money by opting to design one big, multi-purpose room in lieu of a collection of separate rooms. You can save a lot on doors alone, and put those savings into something fun like surround sound, a retractable movie screen or granite for a home bar.
ALWAYS build to code!
Even finishing a basement in an otherwise finished home requires special permits. We make sure our permits are up-to-date with every job we take. Trust your basement remodel to Green!