Our Fall 2014 Project

Things have been quiet indoors this year. Most of the activity around the ranch has centered around the bees, and maintenance type chores. Inside we’ve been going about our business of living in the house. But, as I mentioned in previous posts, we’ve got an indoor project going on this fall.

With kids, cats and us all bouncing into each other, the house is nothing short of a disaster on a daily basis. Tripping over toys and debris is a daily sore point for me. As is trying to get a semblance of privacy to work my home based business without interruption. Finally enough was enough. With all the studios, bedrooms, and whatever rooms basically decorated, or at least decorated as much as they will be anytime soon, there is one last major frontier to tackle inside: the basement.

I drew up a floor plan on the computer in October and secured a permit from our local building department. Once completed to plan, the finished space will add 950 square feet of living space to the house. The added usable space will feature an office area for me. Working in my studio just is proving to be a bit too disruptive during the course of the day. I’m not 100% sure I’ll move downstairs but it does provide that option. The other major space will be an open entertainment area which is our primary reason for doing the project now. We need a place where we can dump the children and their toys. A cluttered family room upstairs grates on my nerves. I’m tired of stepping over stuff.

Connecting the two spaces is a hallway and bathroom. The bathroom is already roughed in and the shower is already there. A large portion of the basement will be partitioned off to be a storage room as well.

We did not want to wait to finish the basement. If we waited, I know what would happen: there would never be a good time. We’d never have the money. The kids would be in college and then why bother. So keeping costs down is paramount. This will be our first finished basement since we’ve been a family.

Our budget for the project is $10,000. We don’t really have a due date but hope to be mostly done by Christmas this year.

Basement plan

Basement plan

I am (will be) doing most of the work myself, single-handedly. The intent is to save as much money as possible, so I’ll do everything I can do myself. Hopefully limiting costs to materials or those tasks I just cannot, or choose not to do such as electrical work (which I can’t do).

The plan is to get the basement done to the point where kids can go down there and play. We’ll have a finished bathroom and painted drywall on the walls. The ceiling will be a suspended ceiling and that should be in place. Floor-wise we’ll stick with the cement, but I’ll rent a cleaner and give it a good washing before the project is done.

Stay tuned for future posts as I walk you through the project, sharing what I learned, what works and what doesn’t work.

What projects are you working on this fall and winter?

Have you finished your basement?

Anything you’d do differently?

Share in the comments below.


7 thoughts on “Our Fall 2014 Project

  1. Plan looks suitable for the needs of a young family. If I had the option, I would install a small kitchen to use for entertaining or extra space for holidays. Unfortunately we’ve never finished our basement. There’s not much you can do with 127 year old sandstone and low ceilings. 😦
    Enjoy 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

    • We looked at old houses with sandstone basements. Yes not much you can do, unless maybe you’re super adventurous and have lots of cash.

      Ultimately my goal is to turn the entertainment area into a home theater with a reasonable amount of bells and whistles including a video game system, sound and tv.

      Stay tuned as I walk through the project and some of my thinking on what we did and didn’t do. (I’m actually a few steps into the project already).


  2. This winter we will be replacing the flooring in our kitchen/dining, bathroom and entrance for sure and maybe our craft/sewing room.

    And no our basement is not finished totally. We have walls and flooring but no ceiling. The ceiling is not a priority for everyone ie. the person who would be hanging it. Also our basement is not one of those designer ones you see on T.V., it is basically “decorated” (and by that I mean in the loosest sense of the word,) with all of the older furniture that was left over after the main floor was furnished. It is functional but going to win any design awards.

    We also have a big storage room in our basement. I think the only thing I can say is no matter how big you make your storage room, in a couple years you will probably wish it was bigger.

    We do have a cold room that takes up part of our storage room. I would suggest this for anyone finishing/planning a basement. It is so handy to store potatoes, onions and act as a pantry for your canned/ packaged food overflow that doesn’t fit in the main pantry. When you live on the farm it is always good to have extra food in case of emergency, and with a cold room it will stay the proper temp meaning your produce will stay edible longer. Ours is insulated and has shelves lining it, on one end is a potato bin. There are also two holes drilled through the wall near the top at one end going outside. These are opened in the winter to allow cold air in to keep the food fresh and closed in the summer to keep the coolness in. It is a basic design but works great.

    I wish you good luck with everything.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Oh man! I’m totally interested to see how you clean (or polish?) the concrete! something we’ve been wanting to do to our basement. ALSO, i’m crazy interesting in seeing the installation of your suspended ceiling (we currently have a legit drywall ceiling, but it needs to come down so we have access to electrical/plumbing if needed) and to hear any recommendations on brands/companies that have a good product.

    Once it’s done, it’s going to be amazing to have all of that extra play space for the kiddos!
    god speed.

    Liked by 1 person

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