Here is what the basement looked like
before starting the project. It is pretty spacious at 1,600sq ft.
There were no signs of mold; however, I left the de-humidifier
machine all the time on since the humidity level was around 65-75%.Once we connect the main floor ducts to the
basement we believe this will reduce the humidity level. We will also install a
larger connected dehumidifier later if the humidity levels don’t stay around
The back wall was painted cinderblock and only had one
outlet. The ceiling tiles were a standard variety you see in any office building.
The carpet was thin with old grey color throughout. The kitchen area had a laminate
simulated wood floor. Two light switches controlled all the lighting for the entire
area. The are numerous black support poles throughout the area.
Initially the basement was very clean and everything in good
condition although a little outdated. It would have made a great recreation or
fitness room but as a livable area it is less than desirable for my mom.
During this stage of the project my mom and I discussed what
we wanted to accomplish. We both we similar ideas but had a few differences on
how to reach the goal.
Our goal was to transform the bland open space into a
beautiful livable area that had a townhouse or condo vibe. We wanted it to be
fully functional as a separate private home.
Key goals 1. Remove, cover or hide black support poles. 2. Replace old ceiling tiles with newer brighter, less industrial look tiles or drywall ceiling 3. Build a fully functional kitchen. New cabinets with granite counter tops and island bar 4. Update the electrical box to handle, new kitchen, w/d hookups, new outlets, add ceiling fans, updated recessed can lights, and light switches that are in normal locations. 5. Frame brick wall to look less cold and more natural part of room. 6. More storage space. Create three closet areas 7. Dog door so dogs can run outside freely 8. Doorways/hallways wide enough to accommodate a wheelchair if needed later. 9. Replace carpet with laminate wood planks that mold & water resistant flooring 10. Update bathroom by creating walk-in shower (remove tub), tile floor, granite counter tops
We did not want was it to look like a basement that just had
a bed and fridge. Also my mom was living
in her house and wanted to move into the new one as soon as possible so we had
to take that into consideration.
Of course we had to do this all on a limited budget. There
were many things we initially wanted but could not afford or turned out to be
very time consuming. Those ended up being discarded as a result of the planning
I drew a layout of the basement, took measurements and
visited houses for sale that had remodeled basements. After that I started
doing research with my dear friend Mr Google on how various other people their renovated
Although the planning stage doesn’t seem that critical it
was by far the most important. It can save you time from having to start over a
particular area, money from costly mistakes, and prevent disappointment in not creating
the best living area that your heart desires.