Basement Remodeling

The extra space you crave could be right under your feet. Many Seattle basements are unfinished or partially finished, and ripe with opportunity for doubling your usable living space.

 

The Benefits of Remodeling Your Basement

From saunas to kids playrooms, the possibilities when basement remodeling are endless. If your family is outgrowing your home, a basement remodel could be the ideal solution. Stay in the neighborhood you love by uncovering your home’s potential with a basement remodel.

As an experienced design-build team, we know the key to a successful basement remodel is prioritizing comfort and design. Comfort includes everything from waterproofing to maximizing natural light. We’ll fix the dampness and darkness of your basement to make way for a usable space that is fully customized to your needs. Is your ceiling low? We can fix that, too! Basement dig outs and house lifts have helped transform countless Seattle basements into living areas.

Basement Renovation Options:

Basement View from Stairs

Double the Square Footage of Your Home

Basements often run the same length and width of a home, creating ample opportunity for a multi-room floor plan. If your family is outgrowing your home, or you’re looking for added living space but don’t have room to build an addition, a basement remodel is a versatile option. A good design-build company will help you determine the most efficient and cost-effective layout to utilize existing plumbing, heating/cooling, etc.

Remodeled basement facing the fireplace with tv mounted above

Increase the Ceiling Height by Lifting Your House

Besides looking cool, a house lift is a practical way to add usable space to your home. Just because your current basement is a crawl space with only 6-foot ceilings, doesn’t mean it has to stay that way. A house lift is exactly what is sounds like: a process by which a home is lifted up on stilts in order to add additional support and frame taller walls. You can add a significant amount of ceiling height this way and finally build out the basement of your dreams.

Create a Daylight or Walk-Out Basement

Depending on your home and the slope of your lot, it may be possible to create a daylight basement. This type of basement has one or more full-size windows and/or doors above ground, making it an excellent candidate for a secondary living room,  light-filled rental unit or indoor/outdoor entertainment area. We’ve also built daylight basements for in-home businesses that need a separate entrance. A daylight basement hardly feels like a basement at all.

Work from Home in a Basement Home Office

Home offices are becoming the new norm. Whether it’s a place to sit down and pay the bills or a full setup for work-from-home days, a basement is often a good quiet place to place a home office. If you don’t want to convert a bedroom into an office, a basement is the next best option for a secluded workspace. Basements are especially clever options for homeowners with a home-based business, since it’s often possible to add a separate entrance and even a waiting room.

Transform Your Basement into a Kids Playroom

We can’t think of a better place for kids to let loose than the basement. We love crafting fun, engaging playrooms that will keep kids occupied indoors through the rainy season. We’ve designed everything from climbing walls to stage curtains to slides, so children can let their imaginations roam free. And of course, we always include an abundance of toy storage. Lots and lots of it to keep your home clutter free at the end of the day. If you’re tired of the living room being taken over by toys, a basement remodel is the perfect solution.

Convert Your Basement to an In-Law Apartment

You can also turn your basement into a guest suite, home for an aging relative or a rental unit. Basements typically have a large footprint, spanning the length of a home, making it plausible to extend electrical, plumbing and other utilities downward. Attached accessory dwelling units (ADUs) have compact kitchens, as well as separate bathroom, bedroom and living area. They are becoming increasingly common as Seattle’s population density rises and new forms of affordable housing are needed.

Enjoy a Basement Bar or Entertaining Area

Finished basements are traditionally cozy spaces for relaxing or entertaining. Some choose to set up a pool table or foosball table and create a rec room. Others recognize the basement’s potential to house things like a home theater, home bar or home gym. Whether you want a space for yourself or one to enjoy with friends, we can help craft a personalized basement with tons of character.

Hire an Experienced Basement Remodeling Contractor in Seattle

We’ve been designing and remodeling basements since our company was founded, allowing us to bring that depth of knowledge to every home we work on. From our first walk through of your basement, we’ll keep an eye out for common Seattle-area basement concerns such as: drainage, foundation repair, earthquake retrofitting and more. We make recommendations with your long-term comfort in mind and will design-build a basement that meets all of your goals. As with every project, we believe craftsmanship will create a beautiful space and communication will make your remodeling experience a positive one.

Basement Remodel FAQs

Do I need a permit to remodel a basement?

Yes. Major remodels, including basements, require a construction permit from the city of Seattle or whatever city you reside in. Permits and inspections ensure project feasibility, safety and additional oversight.

Do I need to hire an architect to remodel my basement?

You can absolutely hire an architect, but another option is a design-build remodeling company such as ours. Design-build companies are able to create detailed architectural plans for permitting, and offer some distinct benefits.

Should I build an addition or remodel my basement?

Often, homeowners are deciding between a 2nd story addition or basement remodel to substantially increase square footage. It depends a lot on your needs and your home’s current design. We can help talk you through the pros and cons, and give advice based on experience. Typically, finishing a basement is the more cost effective option.

Should I dig down or lift my house?

The answer entirely depends on your home and goals. Our Client Services team can offer recommendations based on your objectives, budget, timeline and specific lot considerations. Lifting a home often equates to adding a 2nd story addition. If the extra height is advantageous (mountain, city or water views) or digging is not possible, a house lift is recommended.

How much does it cost to remodel a basement?

It depends. To finish an unfinished basement (with living spaces and a bathroom) you can typically expect to invest at least $150,000. Dig outs, house lifts, seismic retrofitting and structural work can all increase costs. We put a lot of time and detail into our estimates so that you have an accurate price for your project and understand potential costs that could arise during a basement remodel.

What is earthquake retrofitting?

The Pacific Northwest, especially the Seattle-area, is located within the Cascadia subduction zone where the possibility of damaging earthquakes is higher than in other parts of the U.S. Earthquakes can be very damaging to our wood framed homes, and thus our personal safety. Earthquake retrofitting older homes may include: anchoring the home to a foundation, bracing the wall between the foundation and first floor, and/or connecting the main walls to first floor framing. Seismically retrofitting a home is often done in tandem with a basement remodel, since retrofitting work is done at the lowest level of a home.

How can I heat my basement?

There’s many options! The most common are: forced air, heat pumps, hydronic heat, fireplaces and wall-mounted heaters. There’s are lesser known options such as ceiling panels, but we can help you determine what makes sense for your space within your budget and existing systems.

Will finishing my basement increase home value?

Finished basements are always a plus! Due to their versatility, having a nice finished space should absolutely increase your home value. Your basement return-on-investment will depend on the market and local competition when it comes time to sell.

Can I remodel my basement stairs without bringing them to code?

No, altering stairs will require that we bring them to code. We can often come up with a solution that will work for your new finished space without interfering with the upstairs floor plan, but sometimes both floors will be affected. Altering stairs does have some positives. Safety is the obvious one. Storage is a little less obvious, but easily achievable! Under-stair storage can be very flexible, from a small home office to wine racks to simple closets.

How long does a simple remodel take for a basement?

A simple remodel may entail finishing a space that is otherwise in good condition (does not need structural work, for example) and could take 2-3 months. Most basement remodels by the MRM team, however, involve some level of intricacies and repairs that typically require a 4-5 month timeframe. Our estimates provide a monetary as well as time estimate so you’ll know how long your project should take.

Let’s Chat About Your Basement Remodel!

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