Basement remodeling is one of the most common remodeling projects started by homeowners. It is a natural extension of the home, and a place where it is easy to put a recreational area, a family room, an extra bathroom or a spare bedroom or two. Basement remodeling involves special challenges and considerations of which many people are simply not aware.
Moisture is the first thing to consider in basement remodeling. If the existing basement area is damp or shows visible signs of water problems, your project must include a thorough evaluation of the moisture problem and appropriate steps to handle it. For example, you may need a strong vapor barrier along the floor and walls or you may need to dig some new drainage areas around the foundation of your home. Do not scrimp on moisture control, because if you don't handle it properly it will seep in and damage all of the other hard work you put into your basement remodeling.
Pay attention to local codes regarding entrance and exit from a basement area, particularly requirements for windows. Many old houses do not have adequate window wells to meet current building codes and must be modified as part of a basement remodeling project. Another often overlooked factor is thinking about fitting new furniture into the finished basement area. That great new couch or beautiful new pool table will do you no good at all if you can't fit them (or their components) through the door and down the stairs to the basement area.
And don't forget HVAC during your basement remodeling project. The new basement area will need adequate heating, cooling and air ventilation. This is particularly important if you plan to locate bedrooms there or spend a great deal of time there.
Overall, a basement remodeling project can add tremendous value to your home and make it a much more comfortable place to live.