Basement Finishing Ideas and Options

There are quite a few steps required to finish a basement, but with these tips in mind, you're sure to create increase your living space, beautifully.

Basement Living Area

Basement Living Area

Photo by: BBP


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Like any large project, there are several steps to keep in mind when finishing a basement. But there are a few key points that are vital to creating a space that is sound and comfortable.

Lounge-Worthy Basements

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Rustic Man Cave

Do you want to play pool, watch movies or have a wine tasting with friends? (Or perhaps all of the above?) Start by determining how you want to use your basement. Browse 8 Man Caves at

Gathering Musts

By working cozy nooks into your basement layout, you can create private areas without sacrificing an open space for family time.

Photo By: HOWARD TUCKER 216-696-4616

Bold and Playful

To create a basement with the energy and warmth of a Mexican cantina, HGTV designer Candice Olson grounds the design with durable tile that has the look of wide-plank hardwood.

Ceiling Sense

When designing your basement, don't overlook the ceiling. Molding, recessed lighting and a warm color scheme can add depth and charm. Photo courtesy of Design Your Basement

Entertain With Ease

You may never see your family upstairs if the basement is outfitted with comfortable furniture and a high-def projection screen for the ultimate movie-watching experience. Photo courtesy of Finished Basements

Sophisticated Details

Designer's Tip: From family movie night to prime-time sporting events, use geometric patterns and artwork, and install a commanding 85-inch plasma TV and a full bar area to set the stage for everyday use.

Photo By: Alan Gilbert ©Photo courtesy of 2011 CEDIA. Used with Permission.

A Sea-Inspired Retreat

HGTV designer Candice Olson creates a multifunctional floor plan to accommodate a bedroom, a media area and a kitchen. To infuse a beach feel, she uses a sea-green, natural grass and sky-blue color palette.

All-Purpose Rec Room

Most homeowners like to create a large multipurpose media area rather than chop up a basement space into little rooms. This combination bar, recreation space and high-performance media room is the perfect spot for entertaining friends and family of all ages.

Photo By: Alan Gilbert

Mood-Lifting Ambiance

It isn't necessary to have high ceilings in a media room because you'll mostly be seated when you're there. Choose recessed lighting and dimmers to create the right mood. Photo courtesy of Sheffield

Urban Chic Style

This multipurpose media room retains an industrial feel, featuring a spiral staircase and an illuminating wall, creating an urban escape.

Billiards Lounge

If you want the ultimate basement hangout, design a floor plan that accommodates informal dining, lounging and playing games. Photo courtesy of Basement Ideas

Before beginning any basement construction, it is necessary to check for water issues or damage. Check the interior floor and walls, and step outside to make sure the exterior of the foundation is in good shape. Inspect downspouts and gutters for debris in order to keep moisture away from the basement.

Once the basement is dry, it's important to design a layout and decide on a budget. One of the first steps you might take is protecting the floor with a waterproof epoxy sealant. Walls can also be covered with a polyurethane vapor barrier or insulation that is enclosed in the material.

It's important to inspect the ceiling for exposed pipes or electrical wiring. It may be necessary to install a drop ceiling if you will need access to these systems in the future. Proper lighting and baseboard heating are also worthy additions to a basement, giving it a cozy feel like any other room in a home.

Flooring, furniture and the addition of other rooms are not essential to a basement finishing project, but they can make a welcoming difference if there is room in your budget. Each of these steps to finishing a basement will enhance any living space, while adding value to a home.

Ideas for Your Basement Remodel

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