Now that you’ve decided to finish your basement, you’ll need to keep some construction tips in mind to ensure the space is both safe and functional. Usable square footage is one of the best ways to increase your home’s value, and once you know that all the components of your refinished basement are approved by your region or province, you and your family can start making the most of the area.
It’s important that your basement has proper ventilation at all times. Since the basement is at the bottom of the home, it’s easy for moisture to settle there. Be sure that all cracks in the floor and walls are sealed to keep excess moisture from seeping in. A carbon fiber sealant is best, since the material is strong and repels moisture well. If the cracks are small, you can do the job yourself. However, for major openings, it’s best to make an appointment with a professional contractor who can handle the job for you. You can use natural sources of ventilation like opening the windows to let fresh air circulate in the basement. Your windows should also be weather-treated so they are less likely to crack or break during harsh weather. A large fan is also ideal for the basement area, since it keeps air flowing even when it’s raining or snowing outside and you don’t want to open the windows.
You also need to have pre-flooring and sealant in place so you can cover the concrete floors with ready-to-use synthetic wood or tiles. The flooring should be tongue and groove so that all the pieces will fit together tightly and prevent dirt and moisture from forming in the flooring. If you’re not sure which materials to use for flooring, ask a contractor or flooring specialist for assistance. It’s also best to get expert advice on the material that is laid between the concrete and the new flooring. The pre-flooring protects the basement from flooding and keeps the floors from expanding and contracting, especially if you live in an area that gets harsh winters.
All electrical outlets and connections in the basement should be thoroughly inspected as well. If you’re building a small kitchen in the basement, a contractor should evaluate the space and determine where the wiring should be placed. You’ll need to follow this same procedure when you’re having large appliances like a dishwasher, washing machine or dryer installed in the space. Even if you want to install a ceiling fan or advanced lighting or stereo system in the basement, check with an electrician first so you’ll know where to install the wires. If there are already wires and connections in the basement, the electrician can make sure the wires aren’t frayed or damaged to help you prevent injury and costly home repairs.
Once you’ve decided on the design and layout for your basement, have the entire space inspected by a professional so you can move forward with the decorative process. Once you know the basement is safe, you can start adding your personal touches to make the area welcoming and comfortable.