Don’t let your basement be just a blank space at home. With a simple remodeling project, you can convert the worthless space into something really valuable, functional, and beautiful. So if you have a basement that is untouched, better think about converting it into something useful such as an extra room, a storage space, a bathroom, an entertainment center, and just about any other room in the house. But, take note that remodeling a basement can become expensive in the long run.
The Cost Of Basement Remodeling
The usual cost of remodeling a basement ranges from $15 to $50 per square foot.
This price includes all aspects of the remodeling including wiring, framing, walls, ceilings, waterproofing, heat and air, and flooring. The lower end of the spectrum refers to basic items while the higher end can refer to high quality additions in the basement. However, really luxurious basement remodels can cost more than $50 per square foot.
Factors Affecting The Cost Of Basement Remodeling
Project. The cost of remodeling a basement can also vary greatly depending on the kind of basement transformation you are planning to have. For instance, converting a basement into a rental unit may cost you around $30,000 to $50,000. On the other hand, a luxurious basement remodel to an entertainment area can cost from $50,000 to $70,000 or even higher.
Size. The size of your basement can affect basement remodeling costs as well. The smaller the basement is, the lower the remodeling cost becomes. However, as the size of the basement goes bigger, the cost per square foot of remodeling the basement goes lower because expensive items are distributed to the size of the basement.
Approach. As can be observed in most home remodeling projects, doing the remodel yourself can mean lower costs because you can skip the cost of labor. For instance, a typical DIY basement remodel costs around $500 to $5,000 only. This price already includes waterproofing the walls, adding carpeting, paneling and dropped ceiling, and designing it with other touches such as lighting, accessories, and the like. The cost of a DIY basement remodel goes higher only if you hire a professional contractor to install electrical wiring, plumbing, and ventilation. As compared to the cost of a DIY job, hiring a contractor to do everything regarding the remodel means double or even more of the cost of the whole project. In fact, an average basement remodel today costs $30,000 to $50,000.
Materials. The quality of the materials you choose for the project also affects prices here. Using high quality materials will definitely increase the cost of the project as compared to using average or low quality materials.
Current basement structure. What is the existing basement structure? If there are a lot more details to do, the project will cost you higher as compared to having a basement with insulation, temperature control system, and the like. More often than not, a very raw basement remodel can cost just the same as a newly constructed room at home.
The finishing touches of the remodeling project can cost you extra. This can include painting the walls, adding furniture, and the like.
The cost of building permits is also extra. Check with your local government departments to see how much building permits will cost you. Usually, building permit prices vary from one state to another or one county to another.
Getting upgrades for the basement will definitely add up to the cost of the project. For instance, adding a bathroom to the room can mean an additional $4,500 already and a wet bar will add $5,000 to $10,000 to the cost of the basement remodel.
Some Tips Before You Decide To Remodel A Basement
First, know what you really want out of your basement. Since you are eyeing to spend thousands of dollars here, it is important that you convert it into something your family will use.
Before you start anything in line with remodeling the basement, get the necessary building permits first. This does not only mean following protocols but also ensuring that your project will meet local codes for safety purposes such as ventilation, fire safety, electrical load, and ceiling height.
If you are torn between doing the project yourself and hiring a contractor, make sure that it is not always the cost that must be considered. If you are going for a DIY remodel, make sure you can handle the job efficiently. Take note that it is not enough that you have a lot of time to remodel the basement yourself. What is more important here is that you can follow instructions closely, do all the tasks with success, and come up with safe and successful results in the end.
When hiring a professional contractor, make sure to consider only licensed, insured, and reliable contractors.
Get price quotes from three or more contractors. Compare prices and inclusions in the package.
Get a written contract from the contractor of your choice. This will help you study the inclusions in the package and how much you have to pay for the whole project. Take note that a good contractor will be honest to you when speaking of everything regarding the project to establish trust, reliability, and credibility.
To save on the cost of hiring a contractor when remodeling a basement, consider doing some of the tasks yourself. There are a lot of easy tasks you can do such as tiling, painting the walls, and the like. Doing this will save the contractor a lot of time and so the cost of the labor will be slightly lower.
Expensive Ways To Remodel A Basement
Your basement remodeling project does not always need to be on the expensive side. There are a lot of details in the project that, if given the right attention, can bring down the total cost of the remodel. Here are some things you have to consider for an affordable basement remodel:
- Walls. Most basement remodels will require hanging a drywall for the basement. However, this is an expensive option. Instead of a drywall, you may consider using cinder block walls and paint them for a good finish.
- Floors. Go for press-on vinyl tiles to make the flooring an affordable option. You can even consider painting concrete floors and then adding an area rug for a more comfortable and interesting basement room.
- Ceiling. Most basements have exposed pipes and ductwork in the ceiling, which usually is a problem. But since drywall ceiling is costly, you can consider several cheaper alternatives for the remodel. You can choose a drop ceiling with foam panels for an affordable alternative. You can also consider simply painting the pipes and ductwork to make them more presentable.
- Room type. If you want to convert your basement into something useful but you are not ready in relation to the expensive price of converting it into a media room or living room, remodel the basement into a playroom, storage area, or workshop. These types of rooms are a lot more affordable to finish as they do not require a lot of details including furniture, windows, and accessories.