One of the most cost effective ways to add living space to your home is by finishing a basement. With the cost of the average addition starting in the mid-six figures, adding several hundred (or more) square feet by expanding downward is a bargain!
We have built home gyms, single rooms or entire finished levels. Let's get started talking about what you have in mind!
Unless your basement is already considered finished by your town assessor's office, adding finished space MUST comply with current code. Finished basements require TWO means of escape. In New England, a bulkhead does not qualify as a means of escape. This is because of our snowfall in Winter: it could make the hatch doors impossible to open.
One means of escape is the home's existing staircase into the basement. The other can be a door leading into a garage, a door leading directly outside in a walk-out type basement, or a window meeting size, height and opening requirements that leads directly outside through a wall above grade. It cannot be anything else, including the small upper windows found in most basements or a window that opens into a window-well. If your basement does not meet code requirements, adding a second means of "egress" will have to be factored into the cost.
If your basement is already considered finished by your town, there is often leeway to consider it a remodel of existing space that won't have to comply with egress and other current code requirements. We would need to consult with the building inspector in your town to determine this.
Adding a Basement Bathroom
Many people want to add an additional bathroom to their plan for a finished basement. It could be a simple powder room or a 3/4 or full bath to have more facilities for guests or a growing family. This is one of the costliest upgrades to a basement project, and you should be prepared. Adding a bathroom will start around $10,000 and go up from there depending on all the variables.
Image Contracting does not use macerator-type set-ups (Saniflo is one brand). We use a more effective (and attractive) buried sewage ejector system. It is more costly, but it's the right way to go and that's the only way we do things. This system can handle more volume, has less problems, and lasts longer.
What to expect...
Our finished basement projects start at just around $30,000 and go up from there. This is for foundation-in finishing: insulation, framing, electric, plumbing (if applicable), drywall, flooring, ceilings, trim and doors, paint, and other items determined by the plan. There are some exceptions to this if it is a small space, a single room or remodeling an existing finished basement, but we don't complete basement projects below $20,000.
Look at it this way, all of the very same components, materials and processes are going into a finished basement as would be in an addition, minus the foundation and exterior shell. The cost of the project should be equivalent to the interior portion of an addition or other build of comparable design.
Here is a small sampling of some of the projects we have completed to give you an idea of things we can do.
Click the "View Project" button to view more detailed photos.
Rustic to Refined
This was a remodel of an existing finished basement. The previous homeowner had finished this himself and just about everything that could be done wrong was. Not to mention the western saloon theme!
We redesigned the space along with our clients. Then we gutted the existing basement, re-wired the entire space, and converted a storage room to finished space. Luxury vinyl plank flooring throughout the space replacing the horrid peel & stick vinyl "parquet" flooring is a cost effective, durable, major improvement. We also came up with a budget solution for the ugly, utilitarian staircase (just finishing a staircase can run $5,000 or more. This was a fraction of that).
This young and growing family loves their new 500 square feet of living space!
Our clients for this project were both fitness-oriented. In fact, one was a professional trainer. We took this room in another badly DIY'd basement and converted it to an upscale home gym complete with 3/4" rubber flooring.
We re-framed 3 of the walls re-configuring the layout and closing it off into its own space. New ceiling, all new lighting and a 20 Amp circuit for the treadmill and that awesome 3/4" professional rubber floor. As we did demo, we discovered that the previous owner had compromised the structure of the home by improperly modifying the framing. We corrected the problems as part of the job.
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