Basement Remodel: Splurge vs. Save

Once you’ve tallied up the cost of your basement remodeling project, the final price tag can be shocking. As with any home improvement project, staying within a certain budget means clarifying your priorities.

Where to Splurge:

Consider cultured stone. Stone is expensive, but dramatic. It adds a lot of character and warmth to the space.

Add ceiling insulation. Putting R-19 fiberglass batts in the ceiling keeps upstairs noise from ruining your theater experience or your ability to work, if you have a home office. Footsteps on hardwood floors upstairs can be maddeningly loud.

Make the most of your lighting. In the basement, natural light is hard to come by. Once you’ve spent money on tray ceilings, stone, niches, you want to make sure the basement is lit properly to highlight those features. You’ll need task lighting in work areas, focal lighting to play up great features, and adequate ambient lighting to set the mood.

Install Ethernet. This isn’t even much of a splurge. Simply have your electrician wire in your Internet connection before the drywall goes up. Wireless connections in basements can be spotty.

Where to Save:

Skip the fabulous bar. Unless you’re a hard-core entertainer, you don’t really need a bar. The sink and plumbing probably cost $1,000 to $1,500 that could be saved. Instead, consider installing a bank of prefab cabinets and a fridge so you can entertain occasionally downstairs but design the space primarily for elements you’ll enjoy regularly.

Avoid the guest bedroom. An extra bedroom is a must only for those who have frequent guests. Do you truly want it? In most homes, it won’t be used much, so do you want to give up real estate you could be using for yourself? A simple sleeper sofa downstairs might make a better choice, freeing up space for the media room you always wanted.

Have an open space instead of separate rooms. If you don’t have a burning need to close off your home gym or office, don’t. The price of doors, studs and drywall adds up.

Go with cheaper tile in bars and bathrooms. Two-dollar tile can look just as nice as $10 tile. No one will know what you spent.

Buy standard sizes. Use standard-size cabinets and prefab countertops in your bathroom or bar. Adding or subtracting a few inches from your design can save you big.

Downsize in general. Do you need a whole new house downstairs? You don’t have to finish the entire basement just because the space exists. If your budget is straining at the seams, make your plan smaller. You won’t enjoy your new space any less.

When it comes to remodeling your basement, there’s a lot to consider. Consider working with PlumbTile to make the remodel a little less stressful. Our expert employees will be able to aid you throughout the whole process, from budgetary questions to picking out flooring. A remodeled basement can add a whole new feature to your home, so don’t wait, start your remodel today!