The basement of a home is not just a throwaway space. It is an entire living space that can be transformed into something incredibly useful for the entire family. After performing a process known as basement finishing, a basement can become a living room, another bedroom, or an entire hideaway for members of the family.

Taking on the project of basement finishing, however, is not just something that eager homeowners can jump right into in mere days. The entire basement finishing project takes some time to plan, but it is worth the effort to get started after learning exactly what to do.

Why start finishing a basement

Finishing a basement can transform the space into an entire living space. That finished space can be furnished and transformed into a number of different rooms for various purposes. Many homeowners may choose to hire a contractor to do the entire project, but the basement finishing project can also be done on a do it yourself basis.

The entire basement finishing process is a lot more simple than it appears at first glance. The main steps of the process involve installing insulation into the basement wall, selecting appropriate flooring for the basement, finding ways to further weatherize the entire basement, and choosing an appropriate ceiling type for the basement. Before any of these important features of the basement can be implemented, it is important to carefully review each step and determine what needs to be done and secured before getting started.

Are there challenges when it comes to undergoing a basement finishing project? Some challenges do exist, but they can be immediately remedied as long as the basement itself receives a full inspection before any part of the project begins. For example, if the basement has any history with leaks, fixing and installing any necessary plumbing should be taken care of before the basement turned into a living area.

Having a plan for the entire project helps since it sets the stage for what needs to be done and what needs to be acquired. This stage also allows a homeowner to choose if they feel more comfortable doing the entire project on their own or if they want to hire a professional general contractor to help.

As mentioned, a basement finishing project can be handled as a do it yourself endeavor or with the help of a professional contracting company. If the basement layout is relatively straightforward and needs little work to be turned into a living area, doing the basement finishing project as a do it yourself project may work. However, basements that have major obstructions like plumbing or if the homeowner is inexperienced with home renovation require the help of an experienced professional.

Before getting started with basement finishing

Taking on a basement finishing project is exciting, but some of that excitement should be channeled into the preparation process that starts before the project gets underway. Establishing a budget for the whole basement finishing is likely the first thing that a homeowner should do before even buying supplies. However, there are other steps that homeowners should do to prepare for a basement finishing project.

Cleaning out the basement is the next step after establishing the budget, as nothing can be done without making sure space is cleared of any garbage, debris, or the things that were being stored in the basement. Everything should be cleared away before getting started.

After everything is cleared out of the basement, begin learning if there may be any leaks situated throughout the basement area. Leaky areas in a basement can occur practically anywhere, from the ceiling to even the flooring. These issues should be resolved before the basement finishing project starts since leaks can potentially destroy anything new that will be installed in the basement.

Homeowners who are planning a basement finishing project also need to secure the appropriate permits before starting. Getting the building permits needed for renovating a basement starts with researching building codes in their local area to see if their basement meets the requirements for any major renovations. If the basement does meet those requirements, homeowners should apply for those permits so they can start their basement finishing project.

Materials and tools needed for basement finishing

A basement project requires a number of tools and materials to be successful. Fortunately, it is incredibly simple for a homeowner to acquire these tools, whether they shop at their local hardware store or order these tools and materials online. The types of materials and tools needed for the basement finishing project vary based on what needs to be completed within the project itself.

The most notable tools that a homeowner will need for a basement finishing project are the tools that transform materials into the parts needed for completing sections of a basement like the flooring. Some of these tools include hammers, utility knives, nail guns, circular saws, wire cutters, masonry drills, screwdrivers, and pliers. Other tools like tape measures and levels help provide accurate measurements to make fitting newly created materials into selected areas much easier. Common materials needed for basement finishing include foam insulation, caulk filler, foam filler, wooden boards in various sizes, cement, drywall, flooring tiles, ceiling tiles, and various types of wire. Adhesives and fasteners like duct tape and various types of nails are also necessities for any basement finishing project.

The amount of materials and tools needed for a basement finishing project does depend on a few factors. To start, the size of the entire basement finishing project can easily determine how many tools and materials may be required. Larger basement finishing endeavors naturally require more tools and materials to complete. Smaller basement finishing projects, on the other hand, do not require so many tools and materials to finish.

Starting a basement finishing project?

A basement can be a fantastic living space if a homeowner takes the time to turn it into one. In order to get started on a basement finishing project, learning what to do before stepping foot into a hardware store makes a difference in a big way.