What’s On Your Basement Wish List? 5 Tips for Creating Yours
‘Tis the season for list-making! Whether for groceries, gifts, errands, or good intentions, lists seem to keep us all motivated. What about compiling a wish list for your basement finish? What better way to track and prioritize your home improvement plans than to write them down?
Start here to narrow your focus and compose a customized, intentional wish list, so that when you’re ready to finish your basement you’ll know exactly where to start.
Every successful project begins with a productive brainstorming session. By definition, brainstorming implies gathering—evening spewing out all possible ideas—feasible or not. Write them down. Challenge yourself to think of everything you’ve ever thought of wanting to include in a basement finish. Have you always dreamed of having a dedicated hobby room with built-in cupboards and shelving? What about a theater with a tricked-out wet bar? Guest rooms? A dance studio? An indoor playground for the kids? At this point, nothing is off limits. Dream big.
Okay, now set the Dream Big list aside for a moment and take time to evaluate the current state of your home. Ask yourself, “What frustrates me the most about my home?” and place the most dysfunctional feature of your home at the top of this list. Perhaps you don’t have a quiet place for those bi-weekly work Zoom calls (or you’re tired of using a superimposed background to hide the fact that you’re Zooming from the garage), or maybe the family room feels claustrophobic now that the kids are teenagers and are inviting their friends over. Whatever the case, prioritize your list from most aggravating to least.
Time to pick up your Dream Big list again and see how it Venns with your Vexations list. Are there any overlapping areas between the two lists? For instance, if the teens are over-running the family room, the perhaps the theater room and wet bar is the way to go for the basement finish. If, on the other hand, Zoom Zen tops your list, then perhaps adding a hobby space that could double as an office should go at the top of your finish list.
Now that you’ve prioritized your list of basement wishes, assess the current layout of your unfinished space. No sense in reinventing the wheel! Acknowledge what cannot be moved or changed (at least, not without incurring exorbitant cost), such as the location of the furnace and HVAC equipment. Work this into your design plan. Note where rough plumbing stub-outs are located for positioning of bathrooms and/or wet bar. While plumbing lines can be moved, cost will be less if you keep the placement of the rooms needing access to them nearby their existing locations.
Working with a professional architect to draw up plans for your basement finish lays the groundwork for a successful project, as he or she will draw plans according to current building and electrical codes, knowing specific clearances required, etc. Most municipalities require you to submit a set of drawn plans for review as part of the permitting process. But beyond simply the technical aspects, a professional architect can advise you on overall design and will have relevant ideas to contribute to your project, making this a more-than-worthwhile expense.
Should you have the necessary skills and choose to take the project from here on your own, you’ve got a solid plan in place and will need only to work with your local municipality to schedule inspections throughout the process, so as to pass the final building inspection at the end of the project. If, on the other hand, the thought of managing through the construction process leaves you sweaty-palmed and anxious, trust Sheffield to take your project to a successful finish line.
With your wish list now refined and formed into an action plan, we’ll work together with you to plan, design, and build your new basement. We work with 5-star architects Godden|Sudik to design our basements—the same firm that designs our custom homes, and we’ll finish your basement with the same level of craftsmanship and integrity with which we build our homes. Call us today for a no-obligation in-home estimate: 303-420-0056.