For many homebuyers (especially first-time owners), it may initially be unclear what qualifies as a “finished basement.” People often choose to finish or remodel their basement in order to add value to their home before selling it. According to Illinois-based information website City-Data.com, 9% of new homes in the United States had a finished basement in 2013. This study from City-Data.com also found that finished basements are becoming more popular in large houses (those with five or more bedrooms): 18% of large homes in 2013 had finished basements. Let’s analyze what defines a “finished basement” and what the benefits of the basement finishing process are.
What Makes A Basement Finished?
A basement is generally considered “finished” if the entire level has been completed and is similar to the other areas in your home. Although certain aspects of a finished basement are clearly visible at first glance, not all of them are. Let’s look at each of the specific elements of a finished basement.
HVAC System Cools & Heats The Basement
If a basement is finished, it should be cooled and heated via the same system as other rooms in your house. A basement that has a window AC unit or a wall heater is not technically considered “finished.” The cooling and heating system must have a continuous power source (HVAC system, natural gas, heating oil, etc.).
Floors Are Carpeted Or Covered In Vinyl, Wood Or Tile
A finished basement’s floor should always be completely covered with a material found in other floors in the home (wood, tile, vinyl, etc.). A floor that is made of plywood (or painted concrete) is not “finished.”
Be sure also to observe a basement’s walls and ceiling. A lack of drywall is a sign of an incomplete basement. Similarly, a ceiling that has exposed beams or poles indicates an unfinished basement.
The Basement Has Direct Access From Inside The Home
A completed basement should be directly accessible (e.g. via stairs) and connected to the rest of a property. In older houses, the only point of entry to the basement is through an exterior, basement-level door. In cases such as these, the basement may not be considered “finished.” It’s also important to verify that your basement’s layout and structure (including access point and point of egress) comply with state or local regulations about situations such as fires or other similar emergencies that typically lead to evacuations.
Why Should I Consider Finishing My Basement?
On a fundamental level, finishing a basement is an excellent idea because it can give this area of your home a fresh and aesthetically pleasing look and thus feel like a more comfortable space to spend time in.
However, a finished basement can also add significant value to a property and yield a significant return on investment. According to the personal finance website The Balance, finishing a basement can yield an ROI of up to 75%. A finished basement can also potentially lead to reduced heating costs because you can lower the loss of warm air from the basement by covering the floor with carpet and finishing the walls.
Whether you choose to use your basement as a recreation room, an additional bedroom, or any other amenity, the finishing process can ultimately lead to sizable returns.
Speak To Experienced Basement Remodeling Contractors
Reach out to the experts at Monumental Contractors in Chantilly, Virginia for more information about basement remodels. We are a family-owned-and-operated contracting company that serves the DC Metropolitan Area. We strive to uphold our core values of integrity, quality, respect, and accountability in every project that we undertake.
Monumental Contractors have experience remodeling both basements and entire homes, so we are prepared to meet your unique needs and concerns. Regardless of the type and scope of your desired remodel, we will always make sure that it matches your needs, lifestyle, and budget and that the project is completed in a timely manner.
With Monumental, the remodeling process is always carried out the same way. We will begin by helping you set up an initial consultation with one of our design and construction professionals so that we may understand your vision for your basement. After the corresponding design agreement (and estimate) is signed, we will gather all of your selections for the project, including lights, flooring, paint colors, and vanities. If your project requires any permits, we will obtain these as well.
After this, a prep and pre-construction meeting occurs where project logistics and timeline are discussed. Following a construction and quality check, the process will end with a final walk-through inspection where you can have the opportunity to ask any last-minute questions. Call Monumental Contractors today at (703) 552-9626 or contact us online for an estimate or to learn more about our services.