July 12 2016 0Comment

5 Tips for Renovating Your Basement

A basement is one part of the home that has the ability to unveil a whole array of deal breakers for potential buyers, from foundation cracks and musty smells to code-breaking utility installations and improper wall support. In fact, problems of this nature can often send potential buyers running out the door instead of running to the bank. Unfortunately finishing a basement is no minor task. 

With that in mind, renovating a basement is about more than just deciding upon the flow and style – it is also about the foundation, the furnace, the flooring and the function of the rest of the house. So how do you flip a basement without compromising the safety of your home while remaining on a budget?  Here are a few tips.

1. Always Look for Any Sign of Moisture

One of the worst things that could happen is that you put in all of the time and money involved in renovating your basement during the winter months only to have it flood during the spring thaw. That is why it is absolutely crucial that you thoroughly inspect the space for cracks and signs of moisture before starting any sort of renovation.

2. Close Off Any Exterior Points of Entry that Pests Might Get Into

Roommates who eat leftover food crumbs and then poop in your walls are the worst kind – and not just because they don’t pay rent and are really difficult (and often costly) to get rid of. Get rid of any rodents in your home by tightly sealing any exterior points of entry. Rodents and insects are probably one of the top turn-offs for potential buyers.

3. Give Serious Thought to Your Flooring

There is a very good reason as to why hardwood flooring is not a popular option when renovating a basement –  due to the unstable humidity levels that expand and contract wood products beyond their engineered capacity. That is why carpet, tile and laminate flooring options are a popular choice (not to mention cheaper). 

4. Make Sure You Get a Home Inspection Done Before Purchasing

Yes, if you know anything about real estate or renovations that you have heard this tip before. But that is not without good reason, this is arguably the most important tip for home buyers – Get an extensive home inspection before you buy the property. It is also important that you do not merely go along with your realtor’s recommendation. While the person they suggest might be awesome, your realtor could also be recommending them because they are supposed to. Do your research on whoever is recommended as well as your other local options. Doing this is key as this inspection will basically become your renovation bible. It will ensure the home scores an A when it’s inspected again by the new buyers.

5. Try to Add Rough In’s for a Potential Rental Unit

The cost of a basement renovation can escalate quickly, which makes it hard to include an income suite in the budget. However, if you are already plumbing for a basement washroom, why not consider having rough-ins installed for a kitchen as well? This is a huge selling feature for some people and gives them a head start on a future income suite without coming at a huge cost to you.


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