Here we address common concerns regarding basement refinishing and remodeling.

Wood studs or steel studs?

Our preferred method of framing for basements is alway steel stud. We believe minimizing the presence of wood can be beneficial in the event there are ever any water issues, as well as to limit the attraction of insects.

Is drywall in a basement OK? Do I need a drop ceiling?

Drywall is installed in basements all the time. Ensuring the basement is dry and taking precautions to make sure it stays that way is key. The ceilings can also be drywalled as long as there are no mechanical access issues. It is no different than having wiring, plumbing, and HVAC on the first or second floors. The only components to take into consideration are clean-outs, shut-offs, or other important access points since they are typically located in the basement.

How might I use my finished basement?

In most cases, basements are used for additional living space or recreational areas. Sometimes this may include a dry bar/wet bar, which can be custom-designed to fit your needs. Finished basements are often more attractive than additions due to the benefit of not expanding the home’s footprint and are usually less expensive per square foot.

Is my basement ready for a remodel?

That depends on a few factors. First, you must ensure your basement does not have issues with water. Secondly, the foundation walls should be checked to ensure that there are not any structural issues.  All mechanicals including HVAC, electrical, and plumbing need to be inspected to ensure that provisions can be made for access to key areas where necessary. Newly adopted New Jersey code requires an additional point of egress in addition to the stairway leading to the basement, and any bedroom in a basement requires it own separate exit way. This is typically accomplished by installing an egress window with a window well.