One of the most important factors of renovating your basement or any project is staying within your budget. Whether you plan to take on the basement ceiling, floor, walls, or any other aspect, you can create a functional space within a budget. Below, we will discuss some of the ways you can save money, which should help you get the biggest bang for your buck and ultimately, keep you within your stated budget.
Paint or Stain the Flooring
Concrete flooring may not look appealing at first glance, and you may be worried that you have to dig it up and then lay down new flooring. Fortunately, you do not have to do either. Most people will choose to have the basement floor covered with wood or vinyl flooring, but it is not a necessity. In fact, sometimes leaving the concrete floor exposed is a better way to go than trying to cover it up.
Concrete is known to be easy to clean and durable, but it is hard. Some people are turned off by how hard it actually is. If you do have an issue where your home floods, fortunately, concrete is easier to remove water from than other areas because the concrete will dry. You will not have to worry about replacing the concrete or anything like that.
To help you save money and keep your concrete floors, an aesthetic option available to you is to paint or stain the concrete flooring itself. You can even stain concrete to appear like a wood floor. If you plan to do the job yourself, you will find that a gallon of the stain will cover up to 500 square feet of space. You can also use an epoxy latex paint on the concrete, which will allow you to customize the flooring to your liking.
BEFORE you stain or paint the concrete, you want to make sure that it has been thoroughly cleaned and is free from dirt, debris, and other contaminants.
Upgrade the Staircase
Many homeowners often ignore the staircase in their basement remodel, but you do not need to. In fact, you can really elevate it and it will take your space from drab to fab. It is one area of the basement that will not cost much to renovate either.
Most staircases are located in the center of the basement, which means they are front and center drawing in attention. Want to make some inexpensive changes to your basement staircase? Here is what you can do:
- Change out the railing for a new design
- Add carpet runner
- Install a bookshelf or shelving in the unused triangle portion beneath the staircase
- Paint the treads or stair risers
- Upgrade your standard staircase to a spiral staircase
Don’t Fill in the Ceiling and Paint It Dark
When a basement is unfinished, it also comes with a ceiling that is not finished, which means you will not have ceiling tiles or drywall. An exposed ceiling can be quite the distraction and it is also not aesthetically pleasing to the eye as you can see wires, pipes, and more.
One of the most common solutions to the problem is to install a drywall ceiling, which will cost anywhere from $1 to around $1.50 per square foot and hang it yourself. Once the drywall is hung, simply paint it a dark color so that it blends in and does not stick out like a sore thumb.
Black paint will mask the pipes, wires, and other things that may hide up in the ceiling of the basement. You may need to tack up some of the wires first to ensure that they do not become a problem later on.
Do make sure you clean the area out really well before you hang the drywall and always prime the surface of the drywall before you paint it as this will lend itself to the best results.
Tackle Just One Area of the Basement
If you are on a limited budget, tackling just one specific area of the basement is a good idea. You do not have to do a complete remodel immediately and can work on the areas in sections. By dissecting areas of the basement into different projects, you will save money. You can even save some of the more expensive areas until the end too.
Some of the difficult areas that you may need to focus on and remodel at some point, include the water heater, furnace, washer and dryer hook ups, plumbing, electrical, and any columns within the area. Open areas should be quick and easy for you to access. You can turn the space into a theater, workspace, kid’s playroom, gym, and so on.
Foam Insulation Can Be Used as Subflooring
If you plan to lay flooring down in your basement, you want to make sure you have good quality subflooring. The subflooring should be durable and waterproof. This subflooring will also help keep the basement warm and also dry. One of the cheapest ways to put down subflooring is to use a rigid foam insulation. You can quickly and easily cover the floor and it will cost you roughly less than $1 per square foot.
Use Dividers to Separate Space
Many people like to use their basement for multiple purposes and if you plan to as well, then you can use dividers to separate the space. Lessening the number of permanent walls needed will ensure that you spend as little as possible to create the space that you want.
This approach is ideal to create areas such as a gym, kid’s playroom, craft room, and more. To define your different spaces, check out these divider options:
Accordion Dividers – These are easy to setup and take no time at all. You can utilize multiple together to create the size you need. These panels fold open to allow you to access different areas or block them off from access. The accordion dividers stand on their own
Bookcase Dividers – Placing a bookcase in the middle of the room can act as a great divider to separate space. While it is not a traditional option, it is one that will look good and be functional at the same time. You can even add items to the bookshelf too
Hanging Solid Dividers – Solid panels that are made from thin wood, acrylic, or resin are an option too and these are usually hung from the joists in the ceiling. These dividers will slide open or closed for your convenience
Shoji Screen Dividers – A Shoji screen is an alternative to a traditional room divider. This divider is made from rice paper placed inside wooden panels and allows for natural light to come through
Add Shelving Units and Storage to Your Walls
You will definitely find that you need storage in the basement as many do not have any built in. Your basement will need walls and what better way to incorporate storage than directly on them. In a finished basement, you can enjoy lots of space and areas to store things by hanging floating shelves or even adding shelves directly recessed into the walls. You can also purchase and install storage furniture such as an ottoman that opens or a bookshelf with multiple shelves on it.
A floor to ceiling bookshelf is a great option for keeping a lot of things out of the way and can be used to hold more than just books, which makes them convenient.
Renovate Your Basement Today
Renovating your basement does not have to be an expensive project and can be done on a budget. In fact, many things that you will need to do to finish the basement can be done as a DIY project. Again, many of the projects can be completed in sections too, which means you can take the project as fast or as slow as your budget will allow.
As you start to plan out your basement renovation, think about what it is you want and how to get there. Then, determine what your budget is and see where you can save the most amount of money.