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Which Finished Basement Design Is For You?

Your basement doesn’t have to be a dungeon for your home’s utilities and storage boxes. With some creative basement ideas, you can tap into that extra square footage and create a beautiful addition to your home. Here are some different design options for your basement to boost your home's overall value and function.

Home Gym

Turning your basement into your personal workout center can get you motivated and allow you to tailor the space to your needs. Take a look at the following tips to get started on your dream home gym:

basement home gym
  • Make sure you have the proper ceiling clearance in the basement. The important measurement is the equipment's height with you on it. Pull-up machines and treadmills are the biggest culprits because people forget to account for their own height above the machine.
  • Consider installing overhead fans to keep the air moving properly.  It’s no secret that gyms are sweaty places.
  • Consider your flooring. Rubber flooring by itself is often the popular choice, but wall-to-wall carpeting laid over the rubber flooring can provide more flexibility in terms of the room’s aesthetics and comfort value.

Home Office

Basement home offices manage to clearly define your work space and separate it from the rest of the home. So, whether you just spend an hour or two at home with office work, or you have an office at home, here are a few smart tips on how to create an ergonomic and elegant basement home office:

home office
  • Make sure you can receive Internet and phone connection in your basement office.  Unlike the basement living room or the bedroom, a home office is a lot more demanding when it comes to electrical wiring and connectivity. 
  • Lighting is one of the most important components of the basement office. Combine smart functional lighting with the right task lighting to create a space that is warm and inviting. Make use of any windows in the basement and let natural light complement your artificial lighting.
  • Have enough storage to make sure your office does not become overwhelmed with clutter.  Apart from decor that can multitask, sturdy storage units that can hide away the mess help create an organized and aesthetically pleasing home office. 

Kids Playroom

Making your basement a day space for younger kids will mean their noise is contained and they are encouraged to stay away from places you might prefer them not to be, like your study.  Here are a few ideas to consider when designing a kids basement in your basement:

kids playroom
  • Allow for lots of floor space that can be used for play. Don’t fill your basement with sofas and chairs. Try not to break up the space with storage closets and cabinets.
  • Create plenty of storage space.  They are needed to keep the playroom clean and safe. You would want to make sure that the toys are kept safely and not get damaged often.
  • Turn your basement over to a sporting zone for your children. Older children will love the idea of space that is designed to encourage their sporting prowess. Table sports, that you can fold away, are ideal for basements.

Game Room

A basement rec room isn't just for moody teens looking for a private place to hang out. It's a destination fun zone for you, your family, and your guests!  Here are a few design tips for your next basement game room:

game room
  • Opt for a waterproof hard floor surface.  You'll enjoy your basement rec room much more if you don't hover over anyone with a glass of soda or red wine.
  • Lighting plays an important role in basement game rooms with insufficient lighting. Have soft overhead lighting installed, and place lights at any places you need extra illumination.
  • Create a theme for your basement remodeling game room project to make the room a lot more inviting.  Here are a few suggestions:

o Casino Style –From poker tables, to roulette wheels and more, there’s a lot you can do with this option.

o Sports Theme – Use your favorite sports team(s) as the theme of your remodeling project. Installing a bar will create even more possibilities.

o Pool Room – A classic approach that features a pool table as a focal part of your room. An overhanging light above the table can set a certain mood, while it also can be customized to suit your own personality.

Home Theater

home theater

Most homeowners like to create a large multipurpose home theater room rather than chop up a basement space into little rooms. Here are some ideas to use when setting up a home theater in your basement:

  • Don't put viewing screens near a window.
  • Create platform seating to increase visibility just like in a movie theater, with the second row of seats raised up behind the first. Theater seating can get pricey, but the platform won't add much expense to the budget.
  • Place speakers at proper distances from seating before settling on a spatial arrangement.
  •  Insulate the walls of a media room, not just the exterior walls, to dampen sound.

Man Cave

man cave

Man caves are not only good for the male in the relationship, but the significant other as well. Personal space is important, no matter your marriage status or how old you are. Man caves give you the freedom to express your true self.  Here are some suggestions to keep in mind when building your own personal man cave:

  • Consider adding insulation to the ceiling in addition to the walls in order to reduce the amount of sound traveling upstairs to the other residents of the house.  Many activities in the man cave can become very loud.
  • Create a flexible floor plan. The perfect man cave needs a lot of space for activities, and it needs to take into account that those activities may evolve over time. 
  • Install a worthy TV.  When in your man cave watching the game, you want a premier TV to allow you the highest graphic quality. People will be in various areas of the room, so place the TV in a spot that can be seen from anywhere.
  • When the game is on, you want to be sure that no one is forced to sit on the floor or pull up a bar stool. During your basement remodel, make sure to account for a proper amount of seating. 

Guest Apartment

Basement apartments have become extremely popular over the years. They are a great way to increase your living space and home value.  Installing a basement apartment gives you the opportunity to earn rental income or provide a family member with separate accommodations.  Here are some things to consider when adding a basement apartment:

guest apartment
  • A house with a walkout basement can provide a basement apartment with a separate entrance, which most homeowners appreciate. It is also a code requirement for any bedroom to have an exterior door or an egress window that can provide inhabitants with an escape route.
  • Your basement apartment needs a bathroom and small kitchen to function as a completely separate space from your upstairs living area.
  • Privacy and soundproofing are important when you create a basement apartment.  Enclosing the bottom of the basement’s interior stairway creates an entry vestibule at the base of the stairs –an extra layer of separation between the apartment and the house.

Wine Cellar

Wine drinkers sometimes keep wine bottles stacked on the counter or a few whites chilling in the fridge. Wine requires proper storage, and an everyday kitchen cabinet doesn’t quite cut it. If you’ve been considering building a proper home for your wine collection, try taking a look at your basement — it is probably the right spot for a wine cellar.

  • Insulate properly. If an HVAC system doesn't fit your budget, make sure the temperature is properly controlled through insulation. This has a lot to do with your geographic location, so consult a professional to assess your situation.
  • Make use of the space you have. You don’t need an entire room for your wine cellar. If you’re tight on basement space, consider repurposing a closet or a small storage area.
  • Keep the wine in a dark places. Yes, colored bottles do help keep the light out, but do not depend on that. The light in your wine cellar should give off as little heat as possible, while still adequately lighting the space. Too much heat can cause a temperature imbalance in your wine cellar and affect the quality of your wine stock. 

Your basement can be used for just about anything. Because basements are uniquely quiet and private, they are ideal for many uses. The first step in designing your finished basement is to decide how you want to use the space. Once you have ideas about what you want to do with the space, Fortin Construction can help you choose the best solutions to make it happen.  Contact us for your basement needs!

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