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There can be little more depressing for a homeowner than a flooded, damp basement. All that wasted real estate that could be turned into extra space for an endless number of uses, not to mention the value it could add to your home. But is it really possible to turn a watery mess into a cozy living space with a simple basement remodel?
Finding the water source
The first course of action is to establish what exactly is causing the problem. Something as simple as leaves and debris blocking gutters and basement window casings can lead to flooding and water problems. A careful inspection of the areas both inside and outside your basement can often provide the answer. It may be that your problem is caused by something as simple as a pile of leaves that needs a good raking.
Assessing the damage
If the water damage is particularly bad, it may be necessary to actually remove the damaged areas of wall and flooring, and after a course of dehumidification has been completed replace them all from scratch. This is a more expensive sounding prospect than it really is, and a good general contractor experienced in basement remodeling and basement renovations should be able to guide you in the right direction from the start.
After testing is performed to ensure that as much of the moisture has been removed as possible and the new structure is in place work can begin on the real basement remodel, which is really where all the fun begins. The possibilities for your basement space are almost endless. Everything from a comfortable family room to a whole new living space for a teenager can be created in the formerly unusable space.
Check the Floors
One of the main things that can retain moisture and spoil a basement remodel is the flooring. Water can remain underneath carpeting or tiling that is installed directly over concrete, resulting in unseen mould and mildew that can even be dangerous to you and your families’ health. Most contractors advise installing a sub floor before adding the final flooring to provide a good barrier between the cold and porous concrete floor and decorative flooring.
Making your basement beautiful
Good lighting and complementary paint choices can also be very helpful when trying to convert a basement space from dank to delicious. A good quality matte paint, preferably one that is washable, can go a long way to instantly transforming the entire ambience of the space and carefully thought out lighting fixtures can improve it even further.
With the help and professional advice you really can commission a basement remodel that will reclaim that damp dark basement and turn it into a room that is both practical and a delight for your entire family to enjoy spending time in, and that will potentially add thousands to the overall value of your home in general.
Angelica Pinto is an artist, interior design lover and Realtor serving the Kitchener, Waterloo, Cambridge and Guelph, Ontario communities.