Finishing a Basement on a Budget

A basement remodel is a crucial project that helps you turn the space downstairs where you’ve been storing old tools and clothes into a new living space. Remodeling a basement is considered one of the most common projects for homeowners to bring life to the forgotten basement space beneath the house.

One of the main reasons why people take on this home improvement project is to boost resale value if you intend to put your home on the market. According to a recent National Association of the Remodeling Industry (NARI) report, homeowners can recoup up to two-thirds of their costs for basement conservation.

While a finished basement costs about $40,000, a DIY version can cost a lot less if you are creative with some of the basics. The last thing you want is an overpriced finished basement, and it is important to consult a home improvement expert for help. If you are looking for cost-effective solutions to finishing a basement on a budget, here are some tips to help you get started on the right foot.

Start with One Area of the Basement

small area of a basement to start your remodel project
One common downside to DIY basement renovation is the risk of using up the entire budget before the project is completed, leading to a bland-looking finished basement. The best way to steer clear of depleting your budget before the project is over is to start with a smaller area and use the funds to add some fun features to your basement space.

Some features recommended for a basement include a big-screen TV or a wet bar or making aesthetic upgrades with stone and brick. These might look like ordinary enhancements, but they can enhance a finished basement and greatly increase the resale value.

Check the Basement for Unwanted Moisture

unwanted moisture with wet bricks and flooring in a basement
Leaks are often the primary cause of moisture in a basement and deteriorate the structural integrity of your walls and floors. It can be difficult to pinpoint the cause of a leak if you lack the expertise and professional tools.

If there’s a leaky pipe beneath your concrete floor, it can be difficult to detect the cause of the problem until it is too late. Moisture can deter your efforts to finish a basement on a budget because of the related costs of water repair.

Basement Flooring on a Budget

installing luxury vinyl tile for a basement floor remodel
Basement flooring can be quite costly, so it is advisable to opt for luxury vinyl tile (LVT), which is water-resistant. Rather than traditional tile installations, LVT floors result in huge savings and can be refinished with concrete for a more industrial look.

Basement remodels can easily be side-tracked by emerging costs, especially when installing a floor on a budget: the more reason to hire a professional home contractor to help keep the project on track.

Paint the Basement Yourself

painting the walls of a basement by yourself
If you are installing new walls and floors, it is advisable to work with a pro so that it is done in less time without compromising quality. Having someone put up the wall and finish the drywall on time can save you money in the long run, especially if you plan to do the painting yourself.

The Basement usually lacks sufficient natural light, and painting it with a light color can offset this imbalance, giving life and brightness to the room. The color you choose for your basement can create a huge difference in aesthetics and design, turning it into a well-designed living space.

Find Unique Items to Decorate the Basement

purchasing unique items and decorations for a basement remodel on a budget
Most homeowners feel comfortable taking decorative liberties when the basement is finished or nearing completion. If you wish to remain within budget, it is advisable to head to a salvage or thrift store to look for unique items that align with your design specifications.

Whether you want your basement space to feel like a farmhouse, ski lodge, or football fan zone, a bargain store has good deals that will help you stick to your budget and help you channel your inner designer without breaking the bank.

Choosing Your Ceiling and Staying Within Your Budget

basement with soon to be added ceiling as par to a basement remodel project
When choosing a cost-effective ceiling for your unfinished basement, you have three options: sheetrock, painting, or ceiling tiles. The Basement usually has water, sewer, and electric lines running through it, and the type of ceiling you choose should be able to provide access.

Most experts recommend ceiling tiles because of the easy access, but you risk incurring challenges during installation since you need to ensure they are perfectly square and done right. On the other hand, sheetrock is cheaper, but it poses a problem when cutting into it for repairs. The simplest solution for your finished basement is painting; you can do it yourself if you don’t mind a rehabbed industrial look.

Clean Out the Musty Basement Air

musky odor coming from a basement with poor air quality
Moisture is often the cause of musty odors in a basement, but even after keeping moisture at bay, you can still develop musty smells in your basement space. Air quality is vital for your indoor space, or you risk having an underutilized finished basement.

An air purifier goes a long way in ensuring your indoor air quality is not compromised with musty odors, and you can find a cheap air purifier at a local store for less than $100. If left unchecked, musty odors from your basement can spread to other rooms, rendering your indoor space uninviting.

Use Professionals to Meet Code in the Basement

blueprint of a home detailing importance of hiring a professional to remodel the basement in accordance to code
If you are concerned about finishing a basement on a budget, you can cut costs by handling things that are not bound by code. These include painting woodwork and walls, installing doors and trim, and installing flooring. A professional should handle any other task bound by codes to avoid costly repairs and fines in the future. Local municipalities and building departments usually inspect plumbing work, insulation, HVAC, electrical system, and framing, so it is crucial to have these done by a reliable and experienced professional.

If you want to turn these projects into DIYs, you risk a lot of headaches and stress trying to acquire the permits needed to complete an unfinished basement remodel. A professional home contractor is licensed and has the experience to handle projects bound by code, ensuring everything is done the right way, adding value to your home.

Benefits of a Finished Basement

fully finished basement renovation
An unfinished basement prevents you from fully utilizing your indoor space, and it can affect the overall value of your property when looking for a buyer.

A finished basement is a common home improvement project among home and property owners that has the potential to attract more buyers in the future.

An unfinished basement prevents you from fully utilizing your indoor space, and it can affect the overall value of your property when looking for a buyer. A finished basement is a common home improvement project among home and property owners that has the potential to attract more buyers in the future. Here are some benefits of conducting a space upgrade for your home.


Versatile Space


A finished basement provides numerous ways to use the space, from turning it into a home office or game room to a home gym or hobby room, among many others.

Most homeowners prefer adding a full bathroom and turning the basement into a spare bedroom. Regardless of how you want to use the extra basement space, having it finished can help. A professional contractor can help with the design and additions needed to enhance its function based on your preferences.


Increase Home Value


One of the reasons why a finished basement is enticing is the fact that it adds value to your home. This is often a benefit that comes with any home improvement project, and it is estimated to have an average of 70% return on investment (ROI). This means that if you spend $15,000 on a finished basement, your home’s appraised value can increase by %10,500.

However, other factors, such as the local real estate market, might affect these values. Undoubtedly, an added living space in your home may attract more buyers than an unfinished basement, which is an excellent strategy if you are staring at resale in the future.


Energy Efficient


Another benefit of finishing your basement is to enhance energy efficiency. Most basements that are not renovated lack sufficient insulation, allowing air to escape, and compromising your home’s efficiency. A finished basement has added layers of insulation and drywall, which helps maintain a consistent temperature and reduce the loss of energy required to cool or heat your home. If you want to reduce your carbon footprint, or you are struggling with high energy bills, it might be time you considered finishing your home’s basement.


Storage and Organization


Most of the time, the available living spaces in our homes tend to feel disorganized or cluttered, and finishing a basement on a budget might solve the problem. The Basement provides additional storage space for exercise equipment, holiday decorations, and many more. With smart storage solutions like built-in shelving or cabinets, a finished basement allows you to store items securely and safely.

From additional living space to added value, there are numerous advantages to a finished basement. As the leading property management company, we work with reputable local contractors to ensure everything is done with the utmost professionalism. Contact us today and start upgrading your basement without breaking the bank.