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8 Common Basement Renovation Mistakes

8 Most Common Basement Renovation Mistakes

Okay, so you’ve decided to renovate your basement on your own. That’s pretty cool, if you actually know what you’re doing. Remodeling your basement is a huge undertaking, and should not be taken lightly. It can be quite difficult, but it is not impossible.

But there are a lot of mistakes made when remodeling that some think are not a big deal, but actually are. To avoid these problems, here is a list of 8 of the most common mistakes DIYers commit when remodeling a basement.

Neglecting safety

What did your first-grade teacher always tell you? Safety first! People think that since they’ve done a lot of DIY projects, they could handle a basement renovation. Again, it’s a BIG PROJECT and should never be taken lightly. Always remember to put safety first. Make sure you have all your safety gear before you go and remodel your basement.

The basics are the hat, the gloves, and your protective mask. Always have these essentials with you throughout the entire project. Even when you’re almost done with the renovation, never be complacent. Remove the safety gear only when you’ve finished the project, or you’re done working for the day.

Making too many small rooms

small room By Maria MolineroThe basement sounds like the perfect area to duplicate your home above. However, having too many rooms in the basement will make it seem smaller. It’s already underground, so your goal is to make yourself and your guest forget that they’re underground.

Have loads of space. Create space by having in-line cabinets and shelves on the walls. It’s okay to have a couple of rooms, but make sure there’s still plenty of open space to move around.

Not preparing for water emergencies

Another one of the most common basement renovation mistakes is not planning for a flood. As you should very well know, basements are prone to water emergencies like damaged drainage and flooding.

Always remember to check your area first, for example if your in an area that floods during a big storm. If it is, then plan for the drainage first. Before doing any heavy work, make sure you do not touch the plumbing or drainage system. Be careful when digging, installing and adjusting. Make sure you don’t hit any pipes, or else you’ll find yourself in a soggy situation. Consider investing in a sunk pump.

Not soundproofing

A lot of DIY people think that soundproofing is an option. Folks, it is not! You should soundproof your basement, not only because you’re going to turn it into a studio or an entertainment hub. But most of the house’s mechanical systems are underground and near your basement.

If you don’t want a constant humming bugging you while you watch movies, soundproof your walls! There are a lot of ways that you can do this, some of which are installing soundproof pads, or leaving space in-between the layers of your walls so that the sound can’t penetrate.

Choosing the wrong materials

Yes, wood looks very appealing, but are you sure about using it? Remember that aside from being prone to flooding, basements are also prone to moisture from the ground. Wood doesn’t sound like a good idea now, does it?

You may need to build interior walls and do a bit a layering just so you can get rid of the moisture. Do not use regulation insulation as well. There are specific materials that you can find in the market that’s fit for basement renovations. Do your research and follow instructions.Basement stairs

Not planning in the first place

People, a plan is everything, especially for a big project like this. Basement renovations require a plan, and you need to plan it very carefully. Have a fixed design. What will you do to your basement? What items will be there? How many rooms will you install, if ever? Ask from friends who already did basement renovations. Better yet, ask professional help. Better safe than sorry!

Not changing the stairs

People think that because there’s already a set of stairs going down to the basement, you don’t need to touch it. This is another grave basement remodeling mistake! Since you’ve already set your mind into revamping your basement, include the stairs as well. Make sure it goes well with the theme of your basement. This is also a good time to check if the stairs have any problems. Might as well revamp the stairs too, right?

Ignoring proper egress

The law requires every basement to have a proper egress or exit method in case of emergencies. Do not neglect this, or the inspector will make you pay very heavily for it. Study how you can install a proper basement egress. The easiest way to do so is to have a window egress installed early in the construction phase.


Alex PascalArticle written by Alex Pascal.  Alex is well rounded home improvement expert. If you have questions regarding basement design or remodeling you can check out BasementFinishPro.Com to find the exact answers you’re looking for!

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  1. Good advice! I regret that we ever put carpet in our basement. Most people would probably disagree, but even after we had it waterproofed before refinishing, we still had water problems from time to time. The most recent was the sump pump for the washer that quit working. What a big clean up and the carpet got a musty smell which we had to work very hard to get rid of. I hope one day soon to replace it with vinyl plank flooring and place area rugs down.

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