Finished Basement: Get it right the first time!

I love a basement, in every home I have bought or rented I have looked for a basement. If it wasn’t finished I mentally tallied up the cost it would take to finish it. What kind of flooring I could put there, the lighting, furniture and built-ins I can add. But finishing a basement or taking a portion and finishing it can be costly if not done correctly the first time.

Research research research!

When taking on a big project like this one you can never do too much research. You have to take into consideration moisture, insulation and lighting issues, all basements will have concrete block or poured concrete walls. The electric will be in the ceiling between the floor and more than likely only one switch on the wall or no switch it will have a pull for the light. This could pose a problem when looking to put in outlets.

Sometimes for a project like this it is best to hire a professional if not to do the job then to consult with you on how to place the outlets and switches. In the long run the money you spend on a contractor will outweigh the money you could lose by having to redo your work if there is a problem.

Cost effective

Since the basement is underground you are already behind the 8-ball in efficiency, it is damp, cold and sometimes drafty. Insulation is going to be your friend and the best improvement you will buy so make sure it is the right material and thick enough to keep out the cold in the winter and heat in the summer.

Don’t forget to seal any gaps and around your pipes, you can use caulk but spray foam is the best option. Spray foam goes into the gap and spreads out into all the tiny crevices to give you an air tight seal.

Building Materials

Your frame should be built out of pressure treated wood, this will ensure that if the wood gets wet it will not rot. Now that your frame is up, the insulation is in place it is time to hang the drywall. You will want a drywall that is moisture resistant, this will keep mold from growing between the walls and the drywall.

You want your floor to be as level as possible so if you don’t want to add concrete to level the floor you can build the floor up to level it out. Drop ceilings are the best way to hide the wiring and duct work between the floors while still giving you access to that area. You can also use the drop ceiling for recessed lighting or track lighting options.


You always want a flooring that will handle moisture, the basement is underground plus the water heater and tie-ins for the water and sewer are in the basement. Carpeting can hold the mold plus if you ever have a water line burst it is expensive to replace.

Some hard wood floors can take moisture better than others such as bamboo and cork but the optimal flooring would be tile. It works great in high traffic area and where there is moisture. Another thought would be polished concrete. Concrete is a very popular choice since you can polish it and seal it to a high shine, add color and even texture to create a really unique look for your basement.

Basements don’t have to be scary! PlumbTile expert employees can help you create the basement you’ve always wanted!