Avoid the #1 basement renovation mistake, and scroll through this gallery of 21+ design ideas when remodeling a basement!
As many of you know we just finished up our third fixer-upper which included a full basement remodel.
When our cleaning lady saw it for the first time she said, “Ahna, basements are your specialty.”
I have remodeled all 3 basements in various ways over the course of our 3 fixer-uppers, and today I am sharing over 21 ideas to help you think outside of the box when remodeling a basement.
Be sure to read until the end, so you don’t miss the #1 mistake you need to avoid when remodeling a basement!
Listen to or watch this podcast episode below!
21+ Design Ideas When Remodeling A Basement
Add texture and dimension when finishing a basement ceiling.
Yes, you can always do drywall, but why not think outside of the box? Consider all of these different basement ceiling finishes, and for a massive gallery, check out these 44 basement ceiling ideas!
Exposed Basement Ceilings
More often than not an exposed basement ceiling will entail the wooden floor joists, but depending on the construction it could involve metal rafters or beams as well.
Consider whether you will leave the materials naturally exposed or cover them with paint as we did above (all trim and ceiling in the above photo is Simply White by Benjamin Moore).
The darker the paint the smaller a room will feel as it visually lowers the ceiling.
White paint will tend to make a room feel bigger.
I would not paint a ceiling dark if you have an overall height that is less than 9 feet
Plank Basement Ceilings
Plank ceilings typically involve tongue and groove boards of some sort that could be made of wood, PVC, mdf board, etc. They can stand alone or be accented with wood beams.
Metal Basement Ceilings
For a more modern industrial look consider a metal ceiling. For a cheap option find a scrap yard and repurpose discarded metal sheets.
Decorative Tile Basement Ceilings
Decorative tiles can be bought at many hardware stores and are typically glued to the ceiling.
They can resemble pressed tin or embossed ceramic tile.
Some can be painted over. Others resemble metal or stone.
Drop Basement Ceilings
The cheapest and simplest ceiling solution other than leaving a ceiling exposed. The advantage to a drop ceiling is not having to mess with any of the exposed electric.
Coffered Basement Ceilings
A coffered ceiling is referring to the beams installed in a box formation over the ceiling.
Wood Beam Basement Ceilings
The wood beams can be installed over any existing ceiling – plans, drywall, tiles, etc. The beams could be solid wood or faux construction.
21+ Design Ideas When Remodeling A Basement
Maximize the space under the basement stairs.
This space is notorious for becoming a closet. Or dead space that doesn’t get used.
Consider these ideas:
A bar sink under the basement stairs.
Open storage shelves or cubbies under the basement stairs.
Reading nook with shelves under the basement stairs.
A stand-up freezer under the basement stairs.
21+ Design Ideas When Remodeling A Basement
Create a multipurpose entertainment area.
Define seating with a rug.
For smaller basements use easy-to-move sofas, bean bags, or pillow chairs that can be moved for larger groups.
Consider a futon that can be pulled out for overnight company so that the basement can also function as a guest bedroom.
21+ Design Ideas When Remodeling A Basement
Add texture to the walls.
There are a lot of options other than drywall to finish basement walls. Consider painting the concrete block and going for an industrial feel.
Or for a budget option add faux stone/brick paneling. Use this faux stone paneling as seen above.
If you have an old home, then consider exposing the original stone or brick! Seal with DryLock for a smooth, dust-free finish. Read all about the before and after of our Victorian basement renovation!
A super-easy way to add texture on an accent wall for half the cost? This AMAZING stone wallpaper.
21+ Design Ideas When Remodeling A Basement
Create a designated play area for kids.
There are lots of ways to design a play space for kids.
Depending on the age of your children create a large custom-sized play table with this hack. Buy a cheap table like this one from Walmart and cut the legs down to play table height.
Ages 2 to 4 years old, the standard table height is 20 to 22 inches. Ages 5 to 7, table height should be approximately 22 to 25 inches. Ages 8-10 years old table height should be 24 to 29 inches.
Staple burlap or fabric along the inside to hide storage containers underneath for toys!
For smaller spaces, consider mounting a bar top that is 12–18 inches deep along the wall with floating shelves above for coloring books, crayons, crafts etc. Use 12-inch-deep and 36-inch high upper kitchen cabinets below the bar top for storage and support.
Re-purpose an old kitchen sink and countertop for a laundry/craft room.
Many finished basements already have a hot and cold water hookup which can be an easy basement remodel and can be converted to a craft room, laundry room, or even workout space. Adding this space is much cheaper if water lines and a grinder pump are already being installed for a bathroom.
We have done this in every fixer-upper. I re-purposed the old kitchen sink and/or countertop in the basement to create a craft/laundry area.
In our Victorian, I converted the super-inconvenient laundry space in the basement into a craft room. Here I cut down the end of the countertop to fit the base cabinets that I repurposed from the kitchen.
In the Colonial foreclosure, I bought these super cheap cabinets from my favorite wholesale cabinet company LilyAnn Cabinets in Summit Shaker White to fit under the sink counter and island top we repurposed from the kitchen as seen above.
I also used Rustoleum’s countertop transformation kit to refinish the countertops.
In the French Country Cottage, I repurposed the double sink from the kitchen, built my own reclaimed wood countertop from the old oak flooring we pulled up in the kitchen, and again installed LilyAnn Cabinets in Summit Shaker White.
21+ Design Ideas When Remodeling A Basement
Add a game space.
Do you love playing games as a family? Maybe you host a guy’s poker night or de-stress by putting a puzzle together.
Design a game space for a table behind a sofa or against a wall. Install a light specifically for this area that will provide overhead lighting.
Are you ready for the #1 design mistake people make when renovating a basement?!?!
21+ Design Ideas When Remodeling A Basement
Don’t forget a full bathroom!
They don’t think they have enough room for a bathroom let alone a full bathroom. But guess what? There’s a trick.
I have fully designed and renovated two basements now and I incorporated a full bathroom into both.
I had several people comment on the most recent basement reno that they could not believe how I figured out how to design a code-approved full bathroom into this tiny basement.
Here is the secret.
If you have stairs descending to a basement then you have space for a full bathroom. That’s it. Not sure how that works?
Not to worry, because I have the exact dimensions you need!
For a small basement bathroom that most codes will approve, check out this small basement bathroom plan with a digital product list! (Listen to the podcast for a special offer on this digital plan!)
If you have basement stairs, then you have space for a bathroom!
I hope you found some inspiration for your basement remodel.
Do you have a recommendation or creative idea that should be on this list? Drop it in the comments below! Happy designing!
Pin the images below for later!
Hello. And welcome back to another episode of the imperfectly empowered podcast. I’m your host on a Fullmer? Are you planning a basement remodel? We have remodeled three basement. And today I am going to share over over 21 design ideas. When remodeling a basement, we have wrapped up our third fixer up. It is sold. We are about to move out of this house. We are in the process of it as we speak. And in every single home I finished the basement. The first was a Victorian. The second was a colonial foreclosure. And this one we call our French country cottage, fixer upper. This is the smallest of the three that we’ve done. But the bottom line is this. As my cleaning lady said, basements are your specialty. So questions that I frequently get asked, what is the best way to use the space under the basement stairs? How should I finish the walls? Doesn’t expose Joyce ceiling really work. How do I know if I have room for a bathroom? What should I do about. Again today, we’re going to talk about 21 over 21 design ideas. When remodeling a basement, I’m going to give you tons and tons of thoughts to take away, write them down, jot them down, save this for later. Share it. You can certainly check out the blog post as well for lots and lots of pictures and links to products. And let’s get rolling. Let’s first talk about the space under the basement stairs. This office. Converted into a closet that is maybe the most typical use of this particular space, but consider other options such as creating a bar sink. This is what we did in our second fixer upper. We knocked out the wall and opened up the space underneath the basement stairs and we installed base kitchen cabinets. And put in a bar sink, and then we created a bar top right across from it. The second fixer upper was a large basement. This was a 1000 square foot basement. It had standard ceilings. This one was a large area. So we were able to do a big eight foot bar. In this particular basement, but consider recessing a sink underneath the basement stairs with cabinetry, you can put a closet, you can put open storage shelving, so cubbies that kids can put toys and you can put baskets, maybe a reading. Space underneath the stairs, really on any level of the house is a great space to put a bench and then you can even install a little light on the wall, but a couple of bookshelves in the wall and you could create a very, very nice reading nook. Another option. Is to recess a standup freezer under the basement stairs. We did this in our third fixer upper. I created a repurposed, um, some materials and created a cabinet area with a sink. And then at the end of it was underneath the stairs where we recessed a standup freezer. Most of the time, you’ll be able to get a standard size stand up freezer underneath the stairs. A lot of people keep their stand-up freezers in their basement. So this would be a great way to use the space down there. Let’s talk about the ceilings basement ceilings. I actually wrote a blog post. It is called 44. Ideas for your basement ceiling. It is full of pictures, 44 pictures of the different textures that I’m going to share with you, ways that you can finish a basement ceiling and get creative with the space. I just want to let you know that you can check out that blog post. The link is on the show notes, lots and lots of amazing pictures, but let’s, let’s talk about different options to finish a basement ceiling. First exposed basement ceiling. So this is those open Joyce. So the Joyce that run underneath your first floor, they’re there, whether you realize it or not, they’re there and exposed basement ceiling could also be called an open joist ceiling. We did this in this current house because it was a very small basement. The floor to the bottom of the joist is approximately 8,200. We tore out all of the insulation that was running between the joist base and left it exposed. Now what we did, if you are interested in an exposed basement ceiling, there’s a couple things that I want to share with you that are part of the thought process when designing an exposed basement ceiling. When you install lighting, what we did was, and all of this is code approved in our area. Obviously code is different from state to state county to county, but in our particular area, we took the boxes and we installed them between the Joyce. This is what would normally happen, FYI, for those of you not familiar with this, when you do the recessed ceiling light. Which is what most basements involve are the recess ceiling lights. When we installed those, you run them between the Joyce. There’s a little piece that is in the light socket. It’s a little plastic piece in the light socket. We left that plastic piece in until we finished spraying, spray painting the entire ceiling. A common question that I got is how do you finish an exposed basement ceiling? That is what we did. We installed the, the boxes. If you will, for the recess lights, the actual like light housing, if you will. And then we left the little plastic piece and cause what you don’t, what I don’t recommend is spraying it with that plastic piece out because now you’re spraying the. Metal piece that helps conduct the electricity for the light bulb. That is one of the keys is leave that little plastic piece in the electric wiring. In our particular area, I cannot speak for anyone else. The electric wiring was code approved as long as it did not run beneath the Joyce. So it had to go through the Joyce. Drill a hole and it would go through the Joyce sport. It could run the length of the Joyce, but it could not go under the Joyce. So there was no problem with exposed electric wire, like the, you know, the rubber, uh, lines that you might see running across your ceiling. They just can’t run beneath the Joyce. What we did. We finished everything in the ceiling, everything that possibly needed to be done in the ceiling. We tore out the insulation. We removed all of the approximately 3,652 staples that were used for the installation. We pulled all of those out. We minimized any extra wire that wasn’t necessary. Finish your. And then tape off using cheap plastic, big sheets of plastic. You can get it at any hardware store. We taped off the top of the concrete block and then drop plastic down the walls. And with a paint sprayer, we sprayed the ceilings, white everything got sprayed. I recommend when you’re doing this using a, semi-gloss not a flat, it will reflect a lot more light. This was, if you know, obviously hindsight’s 2020 vision. I was not paying attention when Zach and his buddy picked up the ceiling paint, they got a standard flat ceiling paint finish in this basement because it was so small. I. Wanted to actually spray it with a semi-gloss finish. The sheen reflects more light, therefore making it lighter and brighter, which will also make a room feel bigger. If you have a massive basement, maybe you have a nine foot ceiling basement, you can paint it black. This is actually not an incredibly uncommon thing to do right now because the industrial look is very popular. Just be very, very careful with that because it will bring the visually bring the ceiling. So, if you are going to do an exposed ceiling, I would personally recommend white unless you have a really, really tall basement ceiling. And from a lighting standpoint, the other piece is the rule of thumb. You want your lights to be four feet apart? You should have a light every four feet from the wall or from another light. Make sure you’ve got a lot of light. It. I think an exposed basement ceiling is awesome. The only downside is maybe the noise slash installation, but noise is probably the number one downside. Unless you have several layers of protection on your first floor, you will probably hear a lot of noise. I would argue. That’s the only downside in my experience to the exposed basement ceiling. It looks really, really cool. Again, pictures, lots of pictures on the blog plank, basement ceilings. Plank ceilings are tongue and groove boards of some sort. They could be made of wood PVC, MDF board, and they can stand alone or they can be accented with wood beams for that extra farmhouse. Look again, I would be careful with adding beams in a basement ceiling. I probably would not recommend beams unless you have a nine foot basement ceiling. Again, it’s going to visually look. Lower the ceiling, or you could just make them really, really shallow that they’re not incredibly deep. We did this in our first basement, in the Victorian basement. We dropped, we built sort of like a frame with two by fours and in the old Victorian basement, we created a workout space. In the old Victorian basement, creepy dungeon like basement, but we actually did this and it was amazing how much brighter it made this space. So this is a great option if you want. I don’t want to say budget because this is not necessarily cheap. Especially we used the PVC, um, Planck time group boards, because it was a little bit damaged. In the old Victorian basement, even though we really never had water, just kind of had that damn feeling. So we used PVC really look cool. It was amazing how much it brightened it up. But I would not say this as a cheaper option per se, but if you have a damper space, a PVC plank ceiling is probably a better way, a better way to go metal basement ceilings. Now, again, this depends on the look that you’re going for, but for a more modern industrial look, you could consider installing reclaimed sheets of metal. Um, I’ve seen some really cool, uh, ceilings, like a, um, A carriage house or an old barn or some sort of structure on somebody’s property where they’ve actually taken old metal roofing material and they have created a ceiling interior ceiling using those reclaimed sheets of metal. Depending on how dark the metal is. Again, I would just be careful on ceiling height. If you have a ceiling that is less than eight feet, again, ours was less than eight feet. Eight feet is 96 inches are suppose at 81 inches. Ours. Ours is in this particular house. Ours is about the smallest, pretty much the smallest dimensions you could get and still be code approved. We like squeaked through. Um, I would just be careful if you have. That are a little bit lower in your basement. I don’t know that I would do metal. It will make it feel smaller and it will drop visually drop the ceiling. But if you have eight theater, more, a metal corrugated metal ceiling could be really, really cool. You can also get new sheets, certainly an age, them with vinegar or there’s all kinds of aging techniques for metal would be another another option. But Hey, if you can find them on Facebook marketplace or some dude getting rid of a whole bunch of sheets of metal. Uh, pretty budget option for finishing a ceiling decorative tile basement ceilings, decorative tiles can be bought a lot of hardware stores. These are typically glued to a ceiling. These would be a little bit tougher on Joyce. Um, so it kind of depends on what your ceiling is like or what the covering is. One thought here is if you already have drywall, but it’s old, it’s coming apart. Um, you could potentially put these decorative tiles over the, um, drywall for sort of an added visual appeal. They, um, some resemble like an embossed ceramic tile. They’re actually like styrofoam. We use these in a bathroom in our Victorian fixer upper. It did look really cool in the bathroom. I have to say on the ceiling, it really elevated that bathroom. So I’m also resembled Preston again, kind of going with that metal, that metal look except they’re not actually metal. They resemble it. They’re fo Foton. Some of them can be painted over some resemble stone. There’s a lot of options with these decorative tiles and you’d have to get a little creative if depending on what your current ceiling. The standard basement ceiling, probably the most common is the drop basement ceiling. This is where there’s a wire frame. That’s running the length of your ceiling. And you have those tiles that you kind of lift up into the metal frames. What I don’t like about the drop basement ceilings is just that it drops the. It drops the ceiling unnecessarily lower. When you can just go, you could just go flush up against the Joyce. So the advantages to drop basement ceilings is depending on whether you want to DIY it or hire somebody, they can be a cheaper option, especially if you go with. Tiles. The other nice thing is it does make access to water pipes, et cetera, electric, a little bit easier because you can just push up a tile and get to where you need to go. So you kind of have to weigh the pros and cons here. Drop basement ceilings are a good budget option and are, are certainly possible to DIY here’s. Uh, here’s also a thought if you want to go in between, this is what we did in our second. Fixer upper that 1000 square foot basement. We met our contractor halfway, the ceiling guys. I said, Hey, you install the wireframe. You hang. All of that. We will put in the tiles, saved us money because of the time. So that would be another option. If you sorta want to meet halfway coffered basement ceiling. These are a higher end look, I’ll be completely honest. Sometimes I think this is wasted in a basement unless you’re using your basement a lot, or you sort of want that classy high-end bar sort of a look. The copper basement ceilings is it’s referring to box designs. It’s like a box formation with wood more often than not usually over dry wall. Um, there’s various ways to finish the inside of the boxes of a coffered ceiling. It’s just, it’s a higher end. Look again. If I’m going to spend the time and the money to install a coffered ceiling, I’d rather do it in a library or somewhere else, but maybe your basement is that’s the look that you’re going for a coffered basement ceiling would be a way to go. If you want that. Look. Wood beam basement ceilings, wood beams can be installed over any existing ceiling. You could have drywall. There could be tiles. There could be, um, those planks, those tongue and groove planks that I was talking about. Adding beams definitely adds visual appeal. I think they especially look nice when it’s a warm wood against a white ceiling. So whether it’s a white drywall ceiling or a white plank, the tongue and groove, um, plank ceiling, again, I would be careful if it is less than eight feet, I would not personally add would be. It will drop the overall height of your ceiling. If you have greater than eight feet, you could consider it again. Maybe keep them shallow. If you have nine feet, certainly it might help warm up the space actually, and add a little bit more texture and dimension to a large area. Let’s talk about the actual design. So one of the primary reasons that people enjoy remodeling a basement. Intent to host either a playroom or a place where if you’re having large groups of people over, maybe it’s for the Superbowl, maybe it’s for a party, whatever. Most people are somewhere in their basement, trying to design an entertainment area where there’s a TV and seating, not always, but this is one of the most common spaces people are incorporating into their. I want to give you several design ideas with this particular area. First of all, if you have a really large basement, our second basement, again, 1000 square feet, the whole thing was very, very open. In this case, it was important to define the seating area with a large rug. You guys know how I feel about rugs. I love rugs. They’re so wonderful. But one of the purposes that you can use for them is to help define. A seating area, especially when you have a very, very open concept design, but for smaller basements, one of the ways that you can create a multipurpose entertainment area is to consider. Putting in sofas or seating arrangements that can be easily moved if you’re going to entertain larger groups of people. So there’s two different trains of thought here. If you have a really massive basement, you actually want to define this space. Very clearly a big sectional, a big coffee table, a big rug, because you want to actually make it feel a little bit cozier because it, otherwise it gets lost in this massive. Open space, but for smaller basements don’t waste any square inch that you have. What I recommend is instead of a big sectional, that could be more difficult to move. Consider relatively easy to move sofas. Maybe it’s a love seat and then a larger sofa and then a one of those big beanbag chairs and then put them on the glass. I don’t know if you guys are familiar with these, but there’s like, um, little glide pieces. They’re almost like plastic, but you can put them under the feet of your furniture to make moving them really easy. Then they also don’t scratch. But the advantage to this is that if you have larger groups of people and you want to open up the space more, then you can move these up against a wall or you can rearrange them to maximize the space that you need. Here’s another. Hack is create this multipurpose entertainment area with a futon so that your entertainment area in your basement can also double as a guest bedroom. So with a futon, you have the sofa and then you can collapse it and create a guest bed. We did do this as well in our second house. We had several people stay down there and it’s nice because then. Um, especially when you’ve added a bathroom, which we will talk about. Um, you are able to also have a guest bedroom. Let’s talk about the walls. We talked about the ceiling. We’ve talked about random areas all over the place in the basement, but let’s talk about finishing the walls. You guys know, I like texture. I am not the white paint everywhere kind of girl. Despite the fact that this room is painted white behind me. I love texture in a house, every room, very nearly every room. I include a statement piece and or texture walls are a great way to think through adding texture. There’s a lot of options other than dry wall to finish basement walls, or if you’re going to use drywall and you’re going to frame it out and install drywall, consider an accent wall to give some dimension to the space in this third fixer upper. Again, we wanted to maximize the space. If we framed out the walls for drywall, we would have a lot. A lot of space from the floor plan standpoint, because we would have it, the whole room would have kind of closed in a little bit, cause we would have needed approximately three and a half inches. Plus the drywall. We would have lost four inches, pretty much the whole perimeter of the basement. So we painted the concrete block and went for a more industrial feel. We had exposed conduit running down the wall metal conduit into a metal electric box and. We had the open concept ceiling. So we really tried to embrace this more kind of open concept feel with the concrete blocks and exposed ceiling and the conduit. And it’s also really, it was a pretty budget option to drywall would have been a lot more expensive. So consider just painting the concrete block, especially if it’s already waterproofed. There’s really no need to add dry wall, especially if your concrete block is waterproofed. You can dry wall and then consider somewhere adding fo brick or stone paneling. This is what we did in our second fixer upper. The whole thing was dry walled. Again, it was a really big space, so I wasn’t concerned about losing space with drywall, but under those basement stairs where we put a bar sink, I added fo stone paneling. It looked like dry stack stone. It was from home Depot. The link is included in the show. And I ran that the length, it was kind of like the backsplash, if you will. One of my favorite renovations. I loved our second basement. I love the third one too, but the second basement, especially I had a lot of room to work with, but it instantly added texture to a very large open space. I would not recommend tons and tons of fo stone paneling, especially stone, because it is not real stone. So the nice thing is using it as a backsplash. It’s not right in your face. You’re not brushing up against it. It’s hard to even tell that it’s. Brick paneling is the same way. Foe brick paneling. You can consider putting it on an accent wall on a small accent wall or consider wrapping it around a bar. So if you have an island anywhere in the basement, consider the brick paneling around the bar. You could also consider a fo stone or brick along the basement stairs wall. You don’t want to much. Less is more, you want an accent? You want to add texture. So again, this will be a mixture of both dry walling and adding texture through Folkestone or fro fo brick paneling. A another option. This is what we did in our first fixer upper, the old Victorian, if there is original stone or. In your basement, expose it, expose it. So what I did it nearly killed me. I very nearly died. People ask me, what’s your least favorite project ever. This is up there in our very first Victorian in our fixer upper. I was determined to expose this beautiful stone and brick in the base. Where I was doing this craft area. So I took a power washer and I put it on stripping mode. It’s almost like it spins it’s high powered. Like you don’t wanna touch it. It would hurt your skin, but. It strips the plaster that was over the stone and the brick, it stripped it off, but it was freezing cold. I was soaking wet. It was probably 35 degrees, 40 degrees when I was doing this. So it’s really my own fault, but I was impatient and I couldn’t wait to do it. And it looked really cool. Um, pictures again, included, but the point is this, if you have original stone or brick, expose it, strip it. You know, however you want to do it, or by hand, if you’re brave enough, I think the power washer works quite well. And then you seal it. You seal it. This is the key. You want to get a really big thick bristled brush because you know, full well there’s dust that comes off of it because it’s stone, it’s brick, it’s old. So you want to wipe it down after you’ve stripped the plastic. And then take a shop vac or even just a hand dust brush. And you want to suck up as much of the loosened debris as possible as much of it as possible. And then you can either spray or brush on a dry lock sealer. Dry lock is literally the name of the sealer that I used in that baby. I did this in multiple areas. It worked very, very well. And you put it on really, really thick. It also brightens up the stone or the brick really allows the colors to come through, but it seals it so that there’s not just this constant fine layer of dust. If there’s massive holes, you can use. Um, you know, just like, uh, uh, concrete mix and patch it a little bit if you want to. But if you have original stone and brick friend exposed, that that is a gem, let it shine again. Budget option here, use what you’ve got and then drywall the rest or whatever, you know, paint the rest. However you want to do it, but consider exposing and sealing that original brick or stone. All right. We’ve talked to ceilings. We’ve talked walls. Oh, I want to share this super, super budget friendly way to add texture on an accent wall. I almost forgot to share this in this basement. I was determined to add my texture, even though it was a super budget remodel. We were really, really careful how much we were spending. And I still was determined. I need an accent wall somewhere. You guys, I found this wallpaper, it’s an amazing stone photo stone wallpaper. And you would not believe how real it looks somehow like the printing press or whoever printed this. It looks multi-dimensional it really does people always touch it when they come down because they can’t believe it’s wallpaper. So the link will be in the show notes. I’ll make sure it’s their pictures too. But if you want a really budget friendly where you’re not buying Folkestone paneling, or you don’t want to mess with stone or brick, whatever this wallpaper is incredible. Less is more though. I would not do your entire basement, just accent or a backsplash. Well look incredible with this wallpaper. I’ll make sure that is included. Let’s talk about another space. We talked about the entertainment space, play areas for kids, probably number one, number two, I don’t know one of the primary purposes for a basement. Right? Send the kids to the basement, let the mess be somewhere else. And there’s a couple of things that I want to share with you to consider. When designing a play area for kids in a basement, there’s lots of different ways to help designate the space. But I want to share a hack, especially if you have younger children. I would say children ages 10 and lower is to create a large custom sized play table to help define the kids’ play area. I don’t know about you, but last time. Play tables for kids are so expensive. They get so creative. Like they put these little designs on them or train village, you know, is imprinted on the top of it or there’s little they’re so expensive is the bottom line. Why, why are they so expensive? So I faced this in our second. Fixer-upper all three of our kids were very young at the ages where they wanted a play table that they could stand at, but I was not willing to spend. A ridiculous amount of money for these kids play tables. So here’s what I did. And it worked amazingly well. I bought a super cheap table, like the one from Walmart that I have linked in the show notes and I cut the legs down to play table height. That’s it. I bought a super cheap dinner table sized table, and I just cut the legs down to the appropriate play table height here is. Tip for determining how high the table should be. Ages two to four, the standard table height, like a play table is approximately 20 to 22 inches ages. Five to seven table height is best suited around 22 to 25 inches. Eight to 10 years old, approximately 24 to 29 inches. So again, you cut the forelegs down to the appropriate height. Obviously, if you have kids that spend that whole age range, I would probably go somewhere in the middle. Um, and then an extra hack is to maximize the storage space underneath that table and use leftover fabric or. Window valances, for example, and staple them on the inside of the table so that it goes from the inside, like the top of the table to the floor and then slide big plastic storage bins underneath the table for toy store. And then you don’t see the toy storage because of the cute fabric that is running all around the table. There you go. Budget-friendly big play table for kids storage underneath use this hack. My kids got many, many hours of play with that big. For smaller spaces, don’t forget your vertical storage for kids. Here is a design idea. If you want to create a little craft area, but you don’t have a big space for a table, consider buying upper kitchen cabinets, upper kitchen cabinets. The standard depth is 12 inches. Put them along a wall. And you want the height to be approximately 30 inches. So you’re going to buy upper kitchen cabinets, 12 inches, deep 36 inches high. And you’re going to create a countertop that is mounted up against a wall. Try to picture this with me. You’re going to set the kitchen cabinets on the floor, the upper kitchen cabinets on the. And as a side note, then remember your knobs are going to be at the top. Like you’re not gonna put them on the bottom. Like you would a standard upper kitchen cabinet, right. Move the knobs up to the top. And then you put stools in between an accountant. Over the kitchen cabinets. So these upper kitchen cabinets are actually acting like a base for this countertop. You could use wood, you could create your own countertop. You could find a leftover countertop or repurpose an old one, and cut it down to approximately 12 to 18 inches. Deep 12 inches deep is kind of a standard. Like kitchen island, um, bar overhang. So 12 inches would be just fine. So then you’re going to put barstools underneath. Then you can Mount floating, float, floating shelves above the bar top against the wall. You can put floating baskets, you know, the baskets that you would drill into the wall that you can put pencils. Crayons markers. Get the baskets that are for paper size. You can put papers there. Don’t forget vertical space. This is an excellent idea for a craft space for your kids. It would take up next to no room on the floor. The footprint of this space is so small. Get creative. Don’t forget about your vertical storage. Use those upper kitchen cabinets to create this beautiful craft space for your kids. And remodel that basement. You get it, girl. All right. What’s next repurpose, an old kitchen sink and countertop for a laundry craft room. This is kind of related to what we were just talking about, but I have done this in, let me take a drink while I think about this. Yeah, I’ve done this in all three of our fixer-uppers. I was trying to run through my head many finished, basically. Even unfinished basements already have a hot and cold water hookup, which means this edition is super, super easy. A laundry craft room space. If you have hot and cold water hookup already in your basement, if your laundry rooms already in your basement, if you have water of any sort in your basement, like you have a half bath, certainly if you have a full bath adding this extra space. Is super easy. It’s going to be much cheaper if water lines and, you know, a grinder, pumper, whatever already exist in the basement, but even if not, we’ve done it from scratch and relatively speaking, when you can offset costs. In other ways, it is 100% worth it on resale. So repurpose an old kitchen sink and countertop by installing it over. But. Base cabinets, budget base, kitchen cabinets. So in our Victorian, they, the original owners bless their heart, had the laundry in the super creepy basement, the dungeon basement. That was the fixer upper. And I moved the laundry to the first floor bathroom. And then I converted that space in the basement into a craft. So I took the sink and the countertop that was in the kitchen, as well as the cabinets that we removed. And I designed it into this craft room space. I cut down the countertop to fit over top of the base cabinets and I just, I fit it into the space. I cut things down, fit them into the space and created a craft room in our second fixer upper. I took the same. The sink countertop and the island countertop from the kitchen. And I created a separate craft room in our second fixer upper basement. I bought budget. Cabinets from my very favorite wholesale cabinet company, Lillian cabinets, massive fan of Lillian cabinets. You will see them all over my blog. I’ve used them many, many times, including my kitchen renovations and their cheapest line and white is called summit shaker white. So I bought cabinets in summit, shaker white from Lilliane cabinets, link included in shownotes. And then I. Use them with the countertop and the sink that I reclaimed, or I should say repurposed from the kitchen and created this whole nother room, almost like another kitchen, if you will, in the basement. And I created a really cool craft space on the island, and certainly there was tons and tons of storage. Then it’s also nice. It’s sort of nice too, because you have that sink that can also function as the. Wash all your paintbrushes. It’s just nice to have that utility sink somewhere else so that you’re not just using your kitchen sink in this fixer upper, the third fixer upper. I repurposed the, the sink, but then I built my own countertops with repurposed Oak planks that we pulled up from this. There is a tutorial on the blog link included in the show notes, lots of amazing resources guys. In this podcast episode, lots of resources built my own countertops and then used again, Liliane cabinets in summit shaker, white to fit, um, underneath this. And this was again, a smaller space than the second fixer upper. If you repurposing an old countertop and you would like to spruce it up a little bit in my second fixer upper, I used Rustoleum’s countertop transformation kit and finished it in black. I think it’s called Onyx highly recommend Rustoleum’s countertop transformation kit. This is a little bit of an undertaking, but I loved the finished result and the. People that bought our homes. Absolutely loved the basement. We haven’t closed on this third one yet. So I don’t know what it is about this house that they will especially love. But in our first two homes, both, both buyers specifically commented on how much they loved what we did with the basement. So take that for what you. And get real creative with your leftover materials in the basement. Let’s talk more about spaces requiring kind of going back and forth here between the remodel piece and the design. All kinds of ideas, but let’s talk about a game space. Let’s talk about a game space. This is kind of taking it sorta to the next level. If you’re not a game player, maybe you don’t want the space, but as you’re looking at your basement and you’re thinking about these different spaces, these different design ideas consider the idea of a game space. What this means is you take a table. It may not be a massive one, but you think about the lighting that would be required as well as the space that would be required to have a table that maybe you can host guys poker night or putting maybe you would like to de-stress by putting a puzzle together, you could have like a permanent puzzle table. Maybe you love playing games as a family. Maybe you love hosting people and you. A table that people can sit around while watching TV and playing a game or a card game together. So design a space. If you can really think ahead, try to make sure it’s a space that you can include direct down lighting so that you would install a light directly over the table. It can be, this table could be placed behind your seating, like behind a sofa. So, so guests could still see your TV. It could even be pushed up against a. If you don’t want to take up too much of the footprint in your, uh, kind of the middle of your basement, it could also potentially, um, go in like a corner. So if you do a round table that you could still fit people around, you could put this table in a corner with that light, specifically, the download. Over the table, but this is a really fun thing. If you have a bigger space to consider, because you’d be amazed how often it will get used. We did this in our second. Um, and our second basement again, it was a bigger one, but it got used all of the time. People oftentimes sat at that table before they even did sofas. I don’t know why people like to sit around tables. They gravitate to them. So anyway, consider a game space, put shelving, if you really want to define the space, but build in show. Especially if it’s in a corner is kind of the ideal place for it, but shelving floor to ceiling shelving and have all your games, make it really easy to spend quality time together as a family, making memory, playing games, put all your puzzles there, whatever you want, their books, if you want and create that game space. All right flooring. Flooring. This is a really, really common question. I get, what should I put on the floor of the basement, please, please, please take my advice. Don’t put carpet in your basement. Don’t put carpet on your basement floor. I have yet to meet somebody who has put carpet in their basement floor, who has not, at some point had the panic sensation because there’s water in their basement and they have to pull it back and dry it. Or they got to get the humidifier there as well as every fan in the neighborhood to quick, dry it out. I do not recommend carpet and basements. I know it’s kind of the easy button, but I do not recommend carpet in. My number one, recommendation is LVP flooring, luxury vinyl, plank flooring. Again, we’ve done this in two basements. Now there is a multiple options for luxury vinyl plank flooring. The, I have I’ve installed a lot of flooring in the last nine years and the flooring that I installed in this basement, this third fixer. Has hands down been my favorite of all of the LVP that I have installed so far, it was not expensive. It looks incredible. And the design concept behind it is genius. So for those of you not familiar with luxury vinyl, plank flooring, there’s multiple options. You can do click and lock. That’s called a floating floor, meaning it doesn’t actually stick to. The floor beneath it or the concrete or the sub floor whatever’s beneath it. It stays in place because it clicks and locks together. And then, um, you know, it’s pushed up against the sides of the wall of the room and that’s how it stays in place. However, the downside with this is that it pulls apart over time. It eventually that click and lock slowly starts to pull apart or it can warp, or it can kind of curl up. So there’s click and lock. There is peel and stick. I did this in our, I’ve done a lot of click and lock by the way, a lot of click and lock peel and stick. The only peel and stick that I did was in our second basement. I also put it in one of these bathrooms, the peel and stick in the basement did work very well. It was budget friendly. It did still look really good. It is a. Bugger to install. I mean, it is miserable to install. It sticks on you everywhere to so hard to just keep it off of you because you’re literally peeling the sheet. And then it is like the stickiest material ever on the back of these entire planks. It did work well, as long as you prep your floor, right? Um, the longevity, at least in our second home, again, we weren’t there for super long, but I, I did like the PLMs. It was such a pain to install. There’s also glue down. I have never done a glue down flooring, so I cannot speak to it. I would guess it is also a pain. That’s me being, you know, that’s just me thinking if beyond stick was annoying, I would think gluing it down will be annoying to. Okay, let me tell you I’m too excited enough of that. That’s how LVP works. But home Depot, I feel like this thing should be sponsored by home Depot because I’m about to rave on them for a second. Here are the first that I have found this flooring where it’s oh my gosh. I’m blanking on what it’s called. But the bottom line is it’s a grip. The only sticky part is the tongue and grooved edge. So it’s tongue and groove, but the only sticky part is that. So it doesn’t stick to the floor. So it’s kind of like the floating click and lock idea, but it is like the peel and stick in that you peel off the cover and it reveals a super sticky tongue and groove edge, and you press that down onto it. So. I read the reviews on home Depot before I bought this super budget friendly, by the way, I’m blanking on what it was, what it costs. I want to say 1 69, a square foot looks amazing. We used khaki Oak. The link is in the show notes, pictures included. I would absolutely do this again when we build not necessarily, not necessarily for like the main space, um, in, in the house that we’re going to build per se. Uh, basement. This was a phenomenal option, phenomenal option. So I highly recommend the grip edge design LVP it’s waterproof or water resistant. It is so easy to clean. Yes. It creates a hard floor. That’s the number one complaint that I hear is yeah, but your floor so hard and cold. You guys, this is where rugs come in by really, really big area area rugs. But then when you have that heavy rain, you’re not panicking and pulling up carpet and borrowing the whole neighborhoods, you know, fan collection, LVP flooring, khaki Oak, the grip edge design home Depot. I included the link. This is not sponsored by home Depot, by the way. All opinions expressed are my own and are not compensated by them. Okay. Last but not least, this is the number one mistake that people make. When remodeling a basement, the number one mistake people make when remodeling a basement, are you ready for it? They don’t think they have the space or the budget for a full bathroom. And so they opt out of a bathroom. They opt out of a full bathroom. I have fully designed and renovated two basements. Now the Victorian, we were like piecemealing the rooms again. It wasn’t going, none of it counted as finished square feet in Victoria. Um, useful space, but in the second two houses, the last two houses, I incorporated a full bathroom into the design of both at our second house or the second fixer-upper we had neighbors coming in and being like, oh my gosh, I never even thought to install a full bathroom. They’re like, they couldn’t, they couldn’t believe I completely changed the footprint of the basement. And they were like, oh my. That’s brilliant. I can’t even, I didn’t even think about putting a full bathroom down there in this basement. I got super creative. This is only a 600 square foot basement. Again, low ceiling. You should see the before pictures, I actually had some people be like, are you even going to bother finishing this basement? Absolutely. Absolutely. Here is the secret to adding a full bathroom. To your basement that people don’t realize, and you guys, everything was approved by code. Let me also throw that out there. We didn’t just like throw in the school bathroom and then say, good luck. We, this is code approved. Here’s the secret. If you have stairs descending into your basement, then you have space for a full bath. If you have stairs descending into your basement, then you have the space for a full bathroom. I am giving you guys for anyone who wants it, the exact dimensions, the exact floor plan of the smallest possible bathroom that most codes will apply. So that you can design accordingly. If you have stairs, you can have a full bathroom. There’s a link to click in the show notes. You just enter your email. It’s free. You’re not going to get charged for anything don’t panic. You can enter your email. And then to your email, you will receive a PDF of the exact dimensions, not only the dimensions, meaning like the interior space, the size of the shower, tub combo, the exact toilet size, the exact sink size. I am also going to include product link. They are all from home Depot. Again, this is not sponsored by home Depot, but it sounds like it should be. And I’m going to share with you exactly what we did in this basement, because I had so many people say, how on earth are you going to fit a full bathroom down here? And you guys, it’s a great space. The basement actually feels quite open and the bathroom. Um, somebody that walked into it, one of our friends came over and walked into it and she said, oh my word, I can’t believe how big this bathroom feels. All right. I am sharing with you the exact floor plan, the dimensions, the specs. You can give it to your contractor. You guys can use it yourselves. When you are remodeling a basement, get your money’s worth. You will not regret. You will not regret putting a full bathroom in your base. Click on the link in the show notes, enter your email, and it will send you the PDF, including the product links, because this will be the icing on the cake of your basement re. Again, if you’ve got basement stairs, then you have the space for a bathroom. I hope you got something out of all of these design ideas sharing from our last three basement remodels. Again, apparently basements are my specialty. So I’m being told. I’ll take it. I’ll take it. I have nothing else to write home about. So at least at least I have basement, remodels and good. Remodeling your basement. It’s going to look amazing. Let me know in the comments what you think or if you have any questions, have a great day. I did it again. I totally forgot to do the lead at the beginning. My apologies. I’m going to redo the intro again, so sorry. I keep forgetting to do this lead at the. Hey guys. Welcome back to another episode of the imperfectly empowered podcast. I am your host on a Fullmer. We are chatting 21 plus over 21 ideas when remodeling a basement design ideas that you have probably never thought of. Couple of questions. Um, sorry, start over. Cut. Hello and welcome back to the imperfectly empowered podcast. I’m your host on a Fullmer. Are you planning a basement remodel in the future? Would you love to redesign your current basement? Make it more efficient? Enjoy for hosting family, friends. We’re talking 21 plus design ideas. When remodeling a basement, we have remodeled three basements. Now two of them were specifically noted as selling points for the buyers. We have not closed yet on our current house, but this basements one of my favorite projects that I’ve done so far, we’re going to answer questions like what is the best way to use the space under the basement stairs? How should I finish the. Can I just do drywall or are there other options doesn’t expose Joyce ceiling really work. How do you do that? How do I know if I have room for a bathroom? What should I do about the floor? And listen, don’t miss the number one mistake people make when remodeling a basement at the very end, the number one mistake you need to avoid when remodeling your basement at the end. Don’t miss. Let’s get started. Okay. There we go.