A basement in your home can be a valuable bonus feature that not only has the potential to provide you with extra storage, but also can transform into a great living area. You can turn this underground space into a family room, workout space, office or anything you could possibly need. Know how to improve this part of your house to get the most out of this real estate asset.

Protect your basement from water damage In some instances, basements may have an issue with mold and mildew. The underground location of this space may be responsible for the risk of extra moisture inside. Install a vapor barrier to protect this part of the home from excessive moisture and potential mold and mildew growth.

Insulate for comfort Your basement might be a cool and comfortable get away during those hot summer months, but a nippy room during the winter is not as appealing. Conduct a home inspection and ensure that this space has adequate insulation. You may be losing some of the heat you have been pumping into the space through the walls.

Step up your style game Unfinished basements are not the most inviting spaces in your home. Installing drywall or wood with fasteners and anchors can help cozy up the space and make it feel more like a room you can spend some time in. If your ceiling is exposed, consider putting in a drop ceiling as well.

Flooring is another important aspect of upgrading your basement. Know what you want out of the space and determine how much money you are willing to spend. You may want to invest in a durable flooring option that works really well in the space or find a more budget-friendly option. According to HGTV, a plethora of options are available. If you currently have concrete flooring, consider staining or painting it for an industrial look that is both trendy and affordable. Laminate is another option that imitates hardwood or tile but is less expensive and often more durable. If you are looking to warm up the space, cork floors and carpeting are both appealing options.

The lighting you use can have a profound impact on a space. Do not let fluorescent or halogen lights ruin your basement feng shui. Place lamps in the space to add light without being overly bright. Recessed lighting may also be a good option to help lighten the space while still keeping this room comfortable and beautiful.

Keep wires and utilities accessible Whether you are remodeling the space or simply interested in ensuring you can get the most use out of your basement, making sure that proper wiring is available is crucial. Especially if you are installing walls and flooring, confirm that you will be able to access electric sockets and cable, Internet and phone lines easily.

It is also crucial during any renovations or additions that you keep all utilities accessible as well. Make sure you can reach your water valves, gas meters and furnaces at any time.

Install outdoor exits It may be a good idea to also put in a bulkhead door and steps. Not only can this help when you are moving items in and out of your basement, but it is also a good idea to include an additional exit strategy in case of an emergency.

Installing a few egress windows is another way that you can provide an easy exit, and as an added bonus, you can allow more natural light into your basement.

This space can be especially valuable. Know how to turn it from a dark and drabby underground vault to a comfortable living space where you will enjoy spending your time.

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