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(This topic is also categorized under Walls & Ceilings)

Remodeling Your Basement

Basement remodels can present some interesting challenges. If you are creative you can find ways to solve these issues with little effort and cost.

Is your basement cold? Try taking radiant heating products meant for floors and glue them into your walls. As long as you provide airflow in the room they will operate about the same as if they were in your floors.

If your basement is dark, possibly from a lack of windows, you can turn it into a home entertainment area or a darkroom for developing photographs. If you use it for a darkroom you will need to provide plumbing and ventilation as well as a partition to ensure that no one interrupts your work.

For a home entertainment area you will need electrical wiring for sound, video and power. You may also want to put in a small kitchen area to prepare snacks complete with a refrigerator for drinks. You also will want to install sound dampening materials in the ceiling and walls to prevent your home theatre system from creating a racket in the rest of the house.

You will also need to plan for effective lighting. Track lighting and fluorescent lights make poor choices for use in home theaters as they put a glare on the screen. You can create soft lighting by building wood boxes with lights in them and semi-transparent plastic faces on the box that allow a soft glow to escape. Line the walls with a few of these and you will have nice ambient lighting for watching movies and television.

Another great option for a basement is to install a spa or a sauna. In order for this to work you must have a way to deliver hot water as well as adequate drainage. There are several systems you can buy to install in basements for generating steam for a sauna.

If you have a green thumb or someone in your family does it's easy to create a greenhouse in a basement. Controlling mold and mildew can be tricky but it's not impossible. With proper lighting and temperature control you can grow plants all year round. There are numerous free hydroponics resources online that can help you get started for cheap.

Be sure that whatever you do with your basement that you provide good ventilation and install carbon monoxide monitors. These will ensure proper comfort and safety.

Also, a great way to save money on a basement remodel is to buy items at auctions, antique stores and thrift stores. You can often find interesting decorations and accent items to bring flare to your design project for very cheap.

With an average remodeling project for a basement running upwards of $35,000, what better way to turn around a basement remodel than with these tips?

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