Spring is the time for renovating. Finished basements add square footage of living space and increase the value of your home. Completing this project now will give you a comfortable living space next winter. So where do you begin?
If you have experienced any moisture issues, you’ll need to address these first. You don’t want to invest time and money into a space that has mold or mildew problems. Not only does it make the space unpleasant to be in but it can adversely affect your health. The Colorado State University Extension office has helpful, printable information on properly insulating your homes. To read and print this article, click here.
Once your space is dry and well ventilated, the fun begins. There are many great options for flooring in below grade areas of your home. Since this area tends to be cooler, carpet is often the first choice. Not only does it help insulate the room but it’s also comfortable to walk on, lay on and play on. If your finished basement has separate rooms, you may want to consider more than one type of flooring. Let’s review a few options.
As mentioned, carpet is a great insulator and gives the room warmth and texture. This is especially welcomed if you have guest bedrooms on the lower level. It’s important to select the proper padding for your carpet; especially when below grade. Look for one that’s resistant to odors and moisture damage.
Cork provides natural sound and heat insulation, plus its soft, cushioned surface is nice to walk and stand on. It is hypoallergenic, anti-microbial, environmentally friendly and easy to maintain. While cork has many wonderful properties, there are some considerations. If you have pets, natural cork colors are easier to maintain as it won’t show scratches as easily. Use furniture pads for heavy items and make sure the humidity level doesn’t get too high.
There are so many design options with tile, the sky’s the limit. If you want the look of hardwood or stone, marble and even fabric, there is a tile for that! Tile is easy to care for, however it may be a little cold or hard for a full basement area. Add area carpets for added warmth and comfort.
LVP, LVT or SHEET VINYL
Luxury Vinyl Planks, Luxury Vinyl Tiles and the new thicker sheet vinyls are an excellent choice for finished basements. It’s possible to create the look of stone, tile or hardwood with any of these products. While they install easily over a concrete slab, you’ll want to make sure the surface is level and smooth, as imperfections will be visible and possibly damage the flooring. Cleanup is a snap! Just damp mop with a mild cleanser.
If you’re set on hardwood for your finished basement, then engineered wood flooring is the way to go. Site finished hardwood can’t be installed below grade due to damage caused by fluctuations in temperature and humidity. Engineered wood floors provide a more stable substrate for the planks while delivering the look and feel of a solid wood floor. A thin veneer layer of solid wood is laminated to plywood backing. Plywood is more dimensionally stable than solid wood, allowing the planks to withstand temperature and moisture fluctuations without warping. Engineered hardwood planks can either be glued to the basement floor or “floated” over a layer of thin foam sheeting; the planks are held in place by a system of interlocking ends and edges. As always, monitoring humidity levels is very important to prevent damage.
Although the price tag of finishing a basement can be steep, your return on investment could be 70%! Here is a great article from HGTV with more information and awesome design ideas. Click here to read.
Let Schmidt Custom Floors help you with your next project. Come visit us at 1264 S. Grant Avenue in Loveland or call us at 970-663-7402.