With winter just around the corner, it’s time to ensure all areas of your home are ready to withstand the cold. Your basement is often overlooked, but taking time to ensure that it’s prepared for a cold snap can save you from having to make expensive repairs in the future.
The basement can also serve as a handy space for living and entertaining during the festive season, so it’s worth considering whether you can turn it into a multi-purpose area.
Five Ways that You Can Spruce Up Your Basement in Time for Winter
Make it Warm and Cozy
The first step is to sort out any issues with temperature. Due to their location within a house, basements tend to be colder than upper rooms because hot air rises, but there are steps you can take to warm things up.
An initial step is to add insulation to the walls and re-plaster. During this process, you’ll also want to check for any holes or cracks that are letting in air. Leave vents alone, as they’re essential to keeping damp and mold at bay, but any unwanted gaps should be addressed.
Next, consider adding permanent or temporary heating downstairs. You can extend your central heating to the basement, or purchase space heaters. The latter will be less expensive and far easier to install. It also allows you to heat the room only when you’re using it, saving you money in the long run.
Finally, decorate the space in a way that makes it seem cozy; soft lighting, sumptuous furnishing, and plenty of pillows and blankets set the mood just right.
Many of us have more stuff than available space. Cupboards are stuffed to the brim, wardrobe doors are ready to pop, and if you have kids, there are probably bins full of toys taking up space in living areas.
Your basement can offer a handy solution to this problem. Prior to renovation, most basements are used at least partly for storage. Christmas decorations, power tools, old furniture, unwanted gifts; the basement becomes a kind of catch-all for the remnants of modern life.
You may be concerned that renovating your basement will eliminate that storage space entirely, shifting the problem back upstairs. Fortunately, there are clever ways to integrate storage seamlessly into your newly-renovated room.
Firstly, when renovating a basement, you’ll be forced to acknowledge the extent of the things that you own.
It’s a great opportunity to have a clear-out; if you’re really ruthless, you’ll dramatically reduce the amount of things you need to store in the future. Selling some unwanted items can also provide a healthy contribution to your renovation funds.
Once you have a clear space in which to work, you can add cabinets and shelves in all the nooks that would otherwise be unused. Another approach is to add a wall of storage to one side of the basement. You can also buy furniture with hidden spaces, or section off an area that’s just for storage.
Create a Home Gym
Depending on your climate, exercising during the winter might not be the most inviting prospect. A gym membership is expensive, so you might prefer to devote at least some of the space to a home gym.
This needn’t be anything too elaborate. Select your favourite equipment and look for good deals around Black Friday. You’ll also be able to pick up exercise machines at garage sales and through local or online listings.
You may also wish to set aside some space to use as a studio for weightlifting, yoga, pilates, or to follow exercise videos. Installing a large mirror helps you to check your form while you work out. If you have space, fit a water cooler or mini fridge so you can stay fuelled and hydrated!
Transform Your Basement Into a Living Space
A basement can be the perfect location for a primary or additional communal space. For families, the downstairs living room can be filled with toys and games and used as a den for the kids. Or, you can add a projector and comfy seating and transform it into a home cinema.
The basement can also be assigned as an entertainment space. It’s the perfect location for your own bar, with relaxed seating and even a neon sign if you really want an authentic experience! Throw in a pool table and a generously-sized TV and you’ll have the perfect space for every occasion.
You might also have room for a small home office, a library, or an area for arts and crafts that can be enjoyed by everyone in the family. The possibilities are endless once you begin the process of renovation!
Adapt it Into a Spare Bedroom
The holidays are a wonderful time to visit friends and family, and to welcome loved ones into your home. When people stay over, you might find it a struggle to find room for everyone.
For that reason, an excellent use of your renovated basement is to adapt it into a spare bedroom. As we discussed above, taking steps to properly insulate and decorate the room will make it inviting for all of your special guests.
If you have the necessary space and access, you can even create a new entrance to the basement, which will allow visitors to have their own access to the living space without having to knock on the door every time they come home.
This is particularly useful if you’re working and your guests have their own plans during the day. You might also wish to install a mini kitchen to really make them feel at home!
This type of adaptation can be quite complicated, so it’s best left to the professionals. Honest Renovations are the experts in basement refurbishment; click here to find out more about what they can do for you!
Which renovation are you most interested in? Let us know in the comments section below!