Basement remodeling: keeping your sanity!

By: Allison Millar, Contributing Writer
In: Necessary home improvements
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Basement remodeling can be tricky, because it often involves dealing with odd shaped areas, low ceiling heights and basement water issues. If you’re considering such a home improvement project, here’s how to do it with the least amount of frustration.

Hire the right contractor

You want a contractor who works with basements every day, not a kitchen remodeling contractor who is going through a dry spell and wants to branch out. The contractor should know:

  • How to manage basement water issues, including when to recommend installing a sump pump or French drain system
  • Which replacement windows to buy
  • Industry experts, such as structural engineers, to recommend if needed

Get it on paper!

Many basement remodeling plans fail because they are not well planned out on paper. Yes, it’s easy to say you’ll add a bathroom here and a bathroom there, but what about enclosing the water heater and building a wall around the sump pump? Make sure your contractor does a complete drawing on paper that provides scale and dimension for your plan.

Think security with basement remodeling

Many people overlook the safety aspect of their basement living space. Because it’s at ground level, it can be an easy target for burglars. When tackling a home improvement project, look for ways to keep burglars at bay with lighting, landscaping (that does not create an easy hiding place) and motion detector sensors, if needed. Here’s how to keep safety in mind when buying basement windows.

And, while you’re at it, don’t forget the insulating value of today’s replacement windows. By adding double pane windows you can boost your energy efficiency in no time.

Basement remodeling can add plenty of value to your home, although it rarely pays for itself in the short term. If you’re looking more for comfort and expanded space, it can pay dividends, however. Just make sure you do all the research and hire the right professionals to get the job done.

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  1. One Response to “Basement remodeling: keeping your sanity!”

  2. jamie
    Feb 22, 2011

    If you are going to remodel your basement, it is a good idea to conduct a radon test. Most basements have it, but it can easily be mitigated.

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