A finished basement is one of those rooms that feels like it has infinite potential. But all that possibility comes with expenses. When you’re considering remodeling a basement, whether constructing a home theater, adding a basement bathroom or simply making your unfinished basement usable, you’ll need to consider all the factors. From electricians, drywall installers, flooring, heating and more, the basement remodel cost will vary depending on quality, and can add up quickly.
To cover the expense of a proper basement remodel, many homeowners rely on home improvement loans to make even their biggest dreams a reality. But before you can figure out how to fund your project, you must build a budget.
The Average Cost of a Basement Remodel
Now that you’re ready to start planning out your dream home theater, your swanky underground bar, or a cozy guest suite, you need to build a budget. But not just any budget will do. You’ll want to consider all of the remodel costs to make sure no unexpected surprises pop up when you’re already knee deep in your project. On average, Thumbtack suggests that a basement remodel can cost anywhere between $5,000 to $70,000, depending on the scope and size of the project. It’s also important to make sure you do things by the book, so that your exciting new project doesn’t affect the resale of your home in the future. A few costs that pop up while refinishing a basement are factors that many may not even consider, including:
- Installing emergency egress windows
- Adding a bathroom
- Building non-foundational walls
- Installing an interior door
- Repairing existing foundation and remediating water damage
Beyond considering the unexpected, it’s also important to account for the size of the livable space when you’re budgeting for your project. You’ll also need to factor in whether you’re going to use professionals or tackle on your own.
Average Basement Remodel Cost
|Size of Space||Professional Contractor||DIY|
|Less than 700 sq. feet||$10,500||$5,000|
|700 to 1000 sq. feet||$15,000||$8,000|
|More than 1000 sq. feet||$21,000+||$15,000|
The Benefits of a Basement Remodel
Of course, adding some new space to your home has endless benefits. Whether giving you and your family more room to play, creating a private escape or ensuring you can get some work done, a basement remodel will give you room to grow. Beyond the immediate advantages, adding additional living space can also add to your investment. Adding a full living situation, with bathroom, kitchen and sleeping quarters can serve as a rental property, which will add immediate value to your home. This is just one of the reasons why these home improvements are worth the investment.
So, How Much Does It Cost To Remodel A Basement?
Transforming your unfinished basement into a finished basement is no simple task, even if you’re quite handy. Although there are many factors you can do yourself in the process, there are a few that should not be overlooked when creating your new living space. Use the following guide when determining your potential remodel cost.
In order to do a basement remodel right, ensuring you meet all building codes to make a liveable space, you must obtain a building permit. On average, a building permit, which includes inspection fees, can cost around $1,300 depending on location and size and scope of the project. Not only does the city permit ensure that your electrical, plumbing and sewer connection is up to code, it also ensures that your project will be included should you decide to sell your home in the future. And, it ensures that any issues are covered by your homeowner insurance.
Regardless of the size and style of your project, it’s very likely that you’ll need electrical work done. On average, electrical wiring installs can cost around $1,300, but can cost much more if your space is larger, or you’re looking to install canned lights, ceiling fans or surround sound systems. Don’t skimp on this phase of your project, because you don’t want to worry about flickering lights — or worse, a potential fire.
If you’re turning your basement space into a full apartment, or transforming it into a walkout basement, you’ll need exterior doors. This is not as simple as adding interior doors to your existing drywall, and will be a large expense depending on the ease of installation. Anticipate spending anywhere between $2,500 to $10,000 on your new basement external door.
Adding a bathroom to your basement is one of the more expensive undertakings, due to all the factors that come with it. But, it also may be one of the most rewarding additions. On average, adding a bathroom from scratch costs between $15,000 to $90,000 depending on the materials and size of the space. If you have roughed in plumbing, like a drain, the cost can come down considerably. As an added bonus, bathroom remodels add value to your home.
Adding windows to your basement is integral for not only letting in natural light, but to ensure your space is up to code. One egress window costs just under $4,000 on average, and you’ll likely need more than one. So keep this in mind when you’re creating your budget.
How To Save on the Cost of a Basement Remodel
Your basement remodel project may feel like a huge undertaking, but there are some ways where you can cut costs without taking shortcuts. One of the best ways to save money is by doing some of the work yourself. Some of the most common remodeling projects that homeowners feel comfortable conducting themselves include painting, installing flooring and demolishing.
Unless your existing basement is a completely clean slate, you’ll likely need to do some demolition before starting your rebuild. This includes flooring, extraneous walls and unneeded built-ins. Of course, you can hire a professional to demolish, but it’s much cheaper (and more fun) to handle on your own. Pick up a sledgehammer, or rent tools from a hardware store to take out some of the obstacles in your way.
Choosing colors is the fun part, but tackling the painting project can take your basement remodel’s average cost down considerably. If the space is too large to handle with a brush and roller, you can rent a sprayer for about $100 a day to get the job done quick and easy — especially if you’re only using one color. For an even easier experience, tackle your painting before you install your new flooring.
The price of installing new flooring can be exorbitant, but materials have gotten better over the years, so installing it on your own is within reach. Flooring materials can cost anywhere from $22 per square foot for hardwood and around $3 to $10 per square foot of carpet or laminate. Consider tongue and groove options for your basement floor, which is affordable and easy to install, depending on your square footage. One thing can stand in your way when installing flooring, and that’s water damage, so keep your eye out, as you may need to bring in a professional.
How To Fund A Basement Remodel Project
Regardless of whether you decide to tackle your basement remodel on your own, or with the help of professionals, you’ll likely need some financial assistance along the way. That’s where a home improvement loan can help. AmeriFirst Finance offers personal loans from $5,000 to $80,000 to cover the costs of your project no matter how large or small. Applying for a loan with AmeriFirst Finance is as simple as answering a few questions online, and then you’ll be on your way to your new basement space.