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Don’t Start Your Basement Renovation Before Considering These Crucial Factors

Basement Renovation Tips

Are you considering a basement renovation? If so, you’ll be happy to discover it’s an excellent way to add value to your home while providing your family with additional space. Instead of using your basement solely for storage, you can transform the lower level of your home into a bedroom, gym, theatre, or kid’s playroom.

Before you dive into a basement remodel, here’s an overview of the process with factors you should consider before and during your renovation project.

Types of Basement Renovations

Slab and Rough-In—This type of renovation is a simple basement slab with roughed-in plumbing and electric utilities that you can finish later.

Finishing an Existing Basement— If your basement is already built and you’re ready to add insulation, walls, flooring, a ceiling, and décor to make the space usable, this is the best option for you.

Constructing a New Basement— Ready to build a new basement from scratch? Although new construction is the most expensive option, it’s also the most rewarding. You can make your space anything you want it to be while adding valuable room in your home—you can even extend your indoors to your outdoor living space!

5 Things to Consider Before Your Basement Renovation

Before you invest in a basement renovation, carefully consider the following prep work that will need to be completed.

Structural Issues

Is your foundation structurally sound? Will your old framing need to be replaced? What about your utilities? All these structural concerns will impact the cost and viability of your basement remodel.


Before your basement remodel, check for moisture damage, mold growth, and rot. Flooding will erase remodeling progress and cause costly damage if it’s not addressed.


If you notice damp, sticky air or condensation on your walls and floors, you’ll need to dehumidify your basement before your renovation.


Check the ventilation in your basement to address safety concerns—a poorly ventilated basement can accumulate deadly carbon monoxide.


Ensure your basement can accommodate your plans for the future. For example, if you want to transform your basement into a game room, gym, movie theatre, or bedroom, inform your contractor so they can include the necessary area, utilities, and furnishings into the design.

5 Factors that Affect the Cost of a Basement Renovation

Depending on your basement renovation’s extensivity, you can expect to pay between $20,000 to $150,000. These are the most common factors that affect the price of your remodeling project:

Obtaining Permits

Basement remodeling permits can range from hundreds to thousands of dollars, depending on the size, scale, and zoning laws in your city.

Building Codes

Building codes may require you to move or adjust floors, change your ceiling height, or replace your staircase, adding to your overall project cost.

Moving Plumbing & Electrical

Most basements aren’t equipped with functional utilities, aside from your HVAC unit and water heater. The cost to relocate pipes and wiring, add outlets, and install new utilities to make your basement space usable will impact your project’s overall cost.

Layout Options

Are you looking to install a basement slab with roughed-in utilities that you can finish later? Or are you wanting to add several furnished, functioning rooms during your basement remodel? It’s no secret that the layout and overall project size will impact your project’s final price tag.

Type & Height of Ceiling

Your ceiling will have to reach height requirements to follow building codes, requiring expensive work like moving structural beams. Then, you’ll have to determine what type of ceiling to install.

Surface mount ceilings cover your ceiling with drywall, plaster, or paint, and they are quick and easy to install. This option is the most budget-friendly and maximizes space, making it an excellent choice for low ceilings.

Drop ceilings are a popular option for basements because they allow easy access to ductwork, plumbing, and electrical wires. However, only consider a drop ceiling if you have high enough ceilings to adhere to building codes.

Walls & Waterproofing

Remember earlier when we mentioned you should check for signs of flooding, humidity, and ventilation before your basement remodel? That’s because these factors will all affect the cost of walls and waterproofing.

Installing walls with proper moisture-resistant insulation might be more expensive, but it’s critical to protect your basement against costly moisture damage. You’ll also need to install waterproofing to protect the foundation of your home and prevent condensation.

10 Steps to Complete Your Basement Renovation

Once you’ve chosen a reliable contractor who specializes in basement renovations and signed the necessary contracts, it’s time to get to work!

You can expect your experienced contractor to follow these steps during your basement renovation.

  1. Obtain the required permits
  2. Gather necessary measurements, materials, and tools
  3. Complete demolition
  4. Finish framing
  5. Install, replace, and relocate utilities—including electrical, plumbing, and HVAC
  6. Add durable, long-lasting waterproof flooring
  7. Install waterproofing, like perimeter drain systems, to keep your space warm and dry
  8. Build storage areas—like cabinets and shelves
  9. Add insulation and walls that protect against moisture damage
  10. Complete the ceiling—either a low or drop ceiling, depending on your basement’s height

And just like that, your basement remodel is complete! Now you can furnish your basement with stylish, inviting furniture and décor to spruce up your space and make it your own.

Choose an Expert in Pittsburgh Basement Renovation to Finish the Job Right

Ready to add value to your home with a basement renovation? If so, the most crucial step in the process is hiring an experienced contractor who can bring your vision for your basement to life.

Our trustworthy, efficient team can create a basement layout that meets your needs and serves you well in the future. We’ll help you navigate the permit process and keep your project moving forward so you can enjoy your new basement as soon as possible.

We can build what other contractors say “can’t be done.” Visit our basement remodeling page to see how we do it!