If you’ve always wanted to renovate your basement but aren’t sure where to start, the process can seem like an almost insurmountable mountain of tasks. This checklist will give you a step-by-step action plan that you can use to be sure you are on track and that all of the necessary things get done.
Start with a plan
Before you do anything else, it’s important to take a step back and actually plan, on paper, what you want from your basement. Ask yourself: What are my reasons for renovating my basement? What will the new function be? What needs to I have? The more details you can put down on paper about what you plan to use your basement for and why you are embarking on this renovation project, the more smoothly the rest of the process will go.
Make a wish list
Just like when you buy a house, it’s important when you renovate to make a list of the things you must have in your basement (a second bathroom, for example), the things you would really like, and the things that would be nice but that you can live without. That way you can allot your money to the things you really need, and then add in the extras if funds permit.
Decide on a budget
This is very important! Never go into a big renovation project such as a basement makeover without having a clear idea of what you can – and cannot – afford to spend. Otherwise, it’s too easy to let things spiral out of control when it comes to the budget. A word of caution: Always build into your budget a contingency fund. Look at it this way: Your budget is what you reasonably expect to spend on the reno project if everything goes to plan. Your contingency budget is the money you have set aside to cover any unforeseen added expenses, the “Murphy’s Law” fund, if you will.
Decide who will do the job
Do you plan on DIYing the project? Do you plan to hire professionals? Or, do you plan on doing a combination of the two? If that’s the case, make a list of all of the things you can do yourself, such as painting and flooring, and what you plan to hire professionals for. Certain jobs such as waterproofing should be left to professionals such as Affordable Waterproofing LLC, but there are lots of aspects of a basement renovation that can be done by a savvy DIYer. That can be a great way to save a few dollars.
Give yourself room to grow
Finally, it’s important when designing your basement renovation to think not only about your family’s needs now, but also what you may need down the road. Do you plan to sell your home in the next couple of years? Be sure your renovation has widespread appeal. Is your family growing? Adding an etra bedroom in the basement may be a good idea. Do you plan to transition to working from home in the future? Be sure to consider the possibility that you might need a home office space.