Finishing a basement feels like the ultimate goal for many homeowners. Not only is it a chance to add some more — probably much needed — living space to your home, but it allows you the rare opportunity to design a room from the ground up. Working with that much flexibility can often feel overwhelming, especially if you’re dealing with it for the first time.If you’re ready to finish your basement, but aren’t quite sure where to start, this post is for you. We’ve outlined all the do’s and don’ts you need to know to tackle this project from start to finish. Use this as a guide to creating a bonus space that works for you.
You need to think big, start small and fail fast. This is a mantra I stress regularly in my day time profession as a digital marketer but it applies to basement finishing as well.
Stop worrying about getting permits or finishing some 20 page design or budget. Just stop. I want you to start by building a small wall in your basement during the next free weekend you have. You can read the posts on permits, budgeting and planning later.
Most basements are relatively spacious and some have direct access to the outdoors. And while you could hire a basement-finishing company, such as Owens Corning Basement Systems, to finish your basement, where’s the fun in that? Here, we’re going to take a decidedly more hands-on approach and explain how you can flex your DIY muscles and finish the basement yourself.
How Your Basement Will Look When Finished
Before getting started it’s important to ensure the basement is dry and free of any excess moisture, which can promote the growth of dangerous mold. If there’s even the slightest evidence of moisture migrating through the walls, floors or ceilings, it must be resolved before starting construction. Trapping moisture behind walls, below flooring or above ceilings will eventually lead to a serious and unhealthy mold problem.
Just start small. You can use the wall you build to hold up some peg board and some storage shelves, so you’ll be getting benefit right off the bat. And yes, you will need permits, but not right away.
Beyond that, the sky is the limit. Before you get started on your project, think about all the ways you’re hoping to use your basement finishing. Maybe you’ve been thinking about adding a guest bedroom or another powder room or maybe there’s some wasted space that can take on a new purpose.
The traditional home improvement show or book always says the same thing. Gather every single possible tool and supply, plan out in detail and then and only then begin. Well that is crap! The fastest way to the finished product is to start as soon as you have something of value. Yes, you will make some mistakes. But learning from your mistakes is the absolute best method to learn.