If you’re like most people with a basement, this lower-ground area has probably become a hold-all storage zone for all that “stuff” you no longer need or use or bother to take advantage of very often.
However, if you need to set up a home office due to the global pandemic, or you need a spare bedroom for guests, a space for an elderly parent to sleep, or a dedicated teenager’s zone to appease young adults, it’s time to make your basement work harder for you. Here are some ideas for transforming this space into a more helpful, liveable area of your property in the coming months.
Remove and Organise all the Clutter
Most people aren’t getting the most out of their basement because the area is filled with all sorts of things that have been put in it over the years. If you’re in the position where you can barely move in this part of your property because it’s so full of clutter, it’s time to have a clear out.
Take everything out and go through it to see what you can sell, donate, or recycle. Keep what you still value and use, and get rid of the rest. Doing this will help you to truly see the area for what it is and give you a better idea of exactly how much space you have to work within it.
Sort Out Any Problems You Discover
Once you’ve cleared your basement, you may discover numerous problems or even hazards that you hadn’t realised were there because of all the stuff in the way before. Take a good, hard look at the entire basement to identify issues you need to address before you can start spending more time down there.
For instance, if your place is like many others, the basement could be damp and dark due to a lack of ventilation and light. If this is the case, you might spot mould and mildew and potentially even leaks and water damage from above or outside, which need to get sorted out.
Other areas of concern could include bad flooring, rust, stinky carpet or rugs, unsafe wiring, and holes in the wall. There may also be cracks in windows or windows that don’t seal properly and pest infestations. Mice, ants, cockroaches, and other animals often like to live down in basements that don’t get used often because they make for an inviting home.
You may be able to rectify some of the issues you encounter, but you’ll likely need to hire professionals for assistance. Utilise plumbers, electricians, builders, pest specialists, and other contractors as necessary to make sure everything is safe, and you won’t have problems down the track.
Finish Off the Space as Needed
When the above work is done, it’s time to finish off the space so it’s not only liveable but somewhere you and/or your family and friends want to be. Start by improving lighting, since so many basements don’t feel very welcoming because they’re too dark. You may be able to get more windows put in or add a skylight. If not, have further ceiling lights installed. Consider using helpful floor and desk lamps, too, as these also create a nice ambiance.
You will also probably need to have more power points and other electrical outlets added to your basement, as these spaces generally don’t have much in them initially. This work is especially crucial if you want to use the basement as a home office or a media room.
Often the lowest rooms in a house also end up being the coldest, simply because of their position. If you live in a chilly part of the country, or even somewhere that gets very hot at certain times of the year, consider having heating and cooling systems installed to make the space comfortable year-round. It’s always best to outsource this kind of work to professionals, so go online and look up HVAC companies near me to find experts in your suburb.
You can also finish off the basement by painting it to improve the interior design and adding area rugs or carpet to warm up the area, literally and figuratively. Furthermore, perhaps add some artwork to dress things up further, along with storage options such as cupboards, wardrobes, shelving, and drawers.
It takes some time, energy, money, and commitment to turn a basement from a dank, hardly-used storage zone into a pretty, welcoming, user-friendly space, but your efforts will be well worth it in the long run.