Unfinished Basement Ideas To Add Value To Your Home

by | Jul 10, 2022

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10 Unfinished Basement Ideas to Breathe Life Into Your Home

Do you have an unfinished basement? If so, don’t worry – you’re not alone.

A lot of people have unfinished basements, but they often go unused and unloved. This is a shame because unfinished basements can be a great asset to your home.

They can provide extra living space, storage space, or even a place to work on DIY projects.

In this blog post, we will give you 10 unfinished basement ideas to breathe life into your home!

But before we begin, there are a few points to consider.

Do I need an egress window in my unfinished basement?

If you’re refurbishing your unfinished basement, one important thing to consider is whether or not you need an egress window.

An egress window is a window that is large enough and low enough to the ground to allow someone to escape in the event of an emergency.

According to the International Residential Code (IRC), every bedroom must have at least one egress window. So, if you’re planning on adding a bedroom to your unfinished basement, you will need to install an egress window.

There are many benefits to having an egress window in your basement. First of all, it provides a way for people to escape in the event of a fire or other emergency.

Secondly, it lets in natural light and fresh air, which can help to improve the quality of your indoor air.

Finally, an egress window can be a great way to add some extra ventilation to your basement.

How much does it cost to make a room in a basement?

The cost will depend on what type of room you would like and the type and specification of the finishes.

For example, converting an unfinished basement into a self-contained apartment with a bedroom, kitchen, and bathroom will come with a hefty price tag.

Plumbing, appliances, partitions, and electrics all have to be considered and obviously, this is best undertaken by professionals.

Smaller basements may only have space for a family room, games room, or an extra bedroom.

The best advice is to work out your funds and move forward from there with your unfinished basement ideas.

If budget allows and you are looking for a complete transformation hire a contractor after obtaining several quotations.

How to paint exposed brick and drywall basement walls

If you’re planning on painting your basement walls, there are a few things you need to know.

First of all, if you have exposed brick walls, you’ll need to use a special type of paint – such as acrylic-latex masonry paint. This type of paint is designed to adhere to bricks and provide a waterproof barrier.

If you’re not sure what type of paint to use, you can always ask a salesperson at your local hardware store. Shop the Look.

In addition to using the right type of paint, you’ll also need to make sure that your basement walls are properly prepared before you start painting.

For exposed brick walls, this means cleaning the bricks with a wire brush or power washer. For drywall, this means filling in any cracks or holes with spackling compounds and sanding the surface until it’s smooth.

Once your walls are prepared, you’re ready to start painting!

Begin by painting the edges of your walls with a brush, then use a roller to paint the rest of the wall. If you’re painting over exposed brick, you may need to apply two coats of paint.

Once your paint is dry, you can enjoy your newly painted basement!

How to cover a basement ceiling

If you’re not a fan of exposed brick or drywall, you may be wondering how to cover your unfinished basement ceiling. There are a few different options that you can choose from, depending on your budget and preferences.

One option is to use acoustic tiles. Acoustic tiles are made from fiberglass or other sound-absorbing materials. They are designed to absorb noise, making them ideal for use in basements.

Acoustic tiles are available in a variety of colors and styles, so you can find a style that fits your basement.

Acoustic tiles

Another option is to use drop ceilings. Drop ceilings are suspended from the ceiling joists using metal tracks. They are easy to install and can be a great way to add some extra insulation to your basement.

Drop ceilings are also available in a variety of colors and styles, so you can find a style that fits your basement.

Finally, you could simply paint your basement ceiling. This is the cheapest option, but it will not do much to improve the quality of your indoor air.

If you decide to paint your basement ceiling, we recommend that you use pale-colored paint. This will help to reflect some of the light from your overhead lighting, making your basement feel brighter and more spacious.

How to cover an unfinished basement concrete floor

If you have an unfinished basement with a concrete floor, you may be wondering how to cover it. There are a few different options that you can choose from, depending on your funds and preferences.

One option is to use carpet tiles. Carpet tiles are easy to install and can be a great way to add some color and style to your basement. Carpet tiles are also available in a variety of colors and styles, so you can find a style that fits your basement.

Another option is to use laminate flooring over concrete floors. Laminate flooring is a durable, easy-to-clean option that can give your basement a more finished look.

Laminate flooring is available in a variety of colors and styles, so you can find a style that fits your basement.

Other unfinished basement ideas for a concrete floor are wood effect self-adhesive planks. There are many options to choose from, and they stick on many different surfaces.

self-adhesive planks

What is the best lighting for an unfinished basement?

If you’re wondering what the best lighting is for an unfinished basement, there are a few things you need to consider.

First of all, you’ll need to decide what type of lighting you want to use. There are two main types of lighting: natural and artificial.

Natural light is the best type for an unfinished basement. If you have windows in your basement, you should open them up to let in as much natural light as possible.

If you can’t get enough natural light, you’ll need to use artificial lighting. The best type of artificial lighting for an unfinished basement is fluorescent lighting.

Fluorescent lighting is bright and does not produce a lot of heat, making them ideal for use in basements. These are particularly good if you are converting your room to a hobby room, playroom, gym, or office.

When choosing fluorescent lighting for your basement, you’ll need to choose the right size. The size of the fixtures you need will depend on the square footage of your basement.

You’ll also need to decide how many light fixtures you need. A good rule of thumb is to use one fixture for every 50 square feet of space.

Finally, you’ll need to decide where to place your fixtures. The best place to put them is in the corners of the room. This will help to evenly distribute the light throughout the space.

For a darker room, for instance, if you decide to have a movie basement room try to stretch your funds and install flush-mounted lights.

Flush light

What type of room do I want in my unfinished basement?

So you have an unfinished basement and not enough money to hire a contractor to convert it.

Let’s take a look at the top 10 unfinished basement ideas, along with a few tips and tricks that are affordable.

For this blog, I am assuming you have an egress window, and I would advise having one installed.

For more information on styles, visit our page, Home Décor Styles Explained

10 Unfinished basement ideas

1. The Gym – a budget basement idea

Basement gym

Photo by Max Vakhtbovych

Calling all fitness fanatics! Why pay for a gym membership when you can totally utilize an unfinished basement?

To make your basement ideas come to life and adapt the space so it resembles a gym, we just need a little investment and imagination.

Cover the basics for the walls, windows, ceiling, and concrete floor and lay over heavy-duty tiles which are made for a home gym.

You can also add a few mirrors to your concrete walls. The overall look is very industrial but thinks of the money you could save working out in your own private studio space.

2. Kids Playroom

Kids playroom

Photo by Cottonbro

Moving on to the perfect unfinished basement ideas for the younger generation – a playroom.

Obviously, you will need to make sure your basement ideas include heat and all of the appropriate safety measures.

There are a variety of cool floor tiles that you can use, which will make concrete floors warmer and more appealing, and safer.

Playroom flooring 2

There are so many great items you can add to your playroom unfinished basement ideas. For example, hang chalkboards or whiteboards on the walls.

Add plenty of storage for the toys around the room. Easy access for little hands.

If your walls are flat, bring them to life with a mural. Many murals are removable, should you change your mind as time moves on.

Kids mural

Throw in a few floor cushions, bean bags, a desk, and a chair, and all the mess in the house is now confined to your basement.

3. A Grown-Up Reading Room

What avid book reader doesn’t want their very own reading room? How very grown-up. Cover the basics in your basement and just add a nice selection of bookshelves and create the perfect reading room.


Area rugs and a nice comfy chair and lighting will complete the look. If you have the space, why not add a small table with a coffee machine or a small wine cellar.

4. Hobby Room / Art Studio


Photo by Katya Ross on Unsplash

Unfinished basement ideas can include your very own art studio or hobby studio for the creative members of your family.

Ample storage for your paints and art materials stacked against the walls, and it really doesn’t matter about the concrete floor, go for the industrial look. It is your art studio – make a mess and have fun.

Related Post: Home Theater Ideas For Your Basement

5. Games Room and Bar

Games Room

Photo by Pavel Danilyuk

Turn your unfinished basement ideas into an entertaining games room and bar and have hours of fun.
Soft flooring, careful lighting, and imagination can transform your basement into a poker room, an X-box area (think of the peace and quiet in the house), or even a darts area with a small freestanding bar.
Poker table

6. The Man Cave

Man Cave

Photo by Nick Rickert on Unsplash

Turn your unfinished basement ideas into the ultimate man cave. Well, ladies are welcome too.

The floor doesn’t matter. The walls can be rough for the industrial look. Leave the exposed joists – maybe paint them. Add a pool table if you have the room.

What is a man cave without a bar? Create your own. Add plenty of manly signs on the walls.

Bar sign

Add a nice expandable bar to your basement space and create your own bar space.

Home bar

Subtle lights if you are just using this as a drinking area, so use string lights on the ceiling to create a welcoming atmosphere.

7. The Home Office

Since Covid, many of us are working from home office. Add one to your unfinished basement ideas.

Again, add some area rugs or flooring of your choice but make sure you have good lighting where you create your workspace.

Add a good size desk to your home office ideas, shelves, and space for a printer if you need it.

Home office desk


8. Movie Room

Movie Room

Photo by Cottonbro

An industrial look is a great style for unfinished basement ideas. If you have exposed joists and bricks, hang the TV on the wall.

If you have bare wood struts, put up a couple of pieces of drywall and paint it black and hang the TV up.

Add some comfy floor cushions or seating if you have any spare and scatter rugs.

9. Laundry room

Laundry room

Photo by Cottonbro

Make some space in the kitchen and incorporate your laundry room in your unfinished basement ideas.

This room does not have to be fancy – you’re only doing the washing. Adapt it to suit your needs. Laundry baskets, shelving to stack spare toilet tissue, detergent, clothes drier, whatever you need.

Industrial shelving

Stick with the industrial feel when developing your unfinished basement ideas, and add to the style with industrial shelving and racks.

10. The Wine Cellar

Where better to store a collection of wine. Create a cellar where you can make your wine, store it and even taste it.

Add a small table and chairs to make your own space into a tasting room.

Your unfinished basement ideas will have the neighbors flocking to try your latest tipple in your wine cellar.

Related Post: 15 Modern Bar Ideas For Basements


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