Redecorating a Basement: Basement Design Tips

basement redesignRedecorating a basement can be tough for the average homeowner. Basements are generally dark and musty compared to the rest of the house, and regardless of your climate, your basement is probably susceptible to at least some level of dampness. There are ways to get around these roadblocks, though, and with the help of the advice below, you can turn your basement into a beautiful and comfortable family room, game room, bedroom, or home office.


Because basements are below ground, they don’t receive as much light as the rest of the house. Light is one of the best ways to make a room appear cheerier and more inviting, though, so it’s important for you to find ways around this lack of light.

Pot lights are one great option, as they are recessed into the ceiling, ensuring that your basement’s already-low ceilings aren’t made to appear even lower. Track lighting is another effective way to brighten up your basement, especially if its light fixtures do not hang low. Lamps, both desk and floor, can also be spread throughout the room, helping to open up the room and keep corners well-lit.

For some basements, additional windows may also be an option. Although this is a much more labor-intensive undertaking than simply purchasing some lamps, a skilled contractor can make short work of this job. Windows, even those high up along the walls, will let in plenty of natural light and will help your basement appear more spacious and inviting.


When choosing flooring for your basement, it’s crucial that you keep in mind your basement’s level of dampness. Even if you have a sump pump, you will probably still want to avoid certain types of flooring. Carpet is usually not a good choice for most families because it will grow moldy and will need to be completely replaced after a flood or after a few months/ years of constant dampness.

Hardwood flooring should also be avoided, as wood is very susceptible to water damage. The average basement’s moisture levels can quickly cause warping and buckling of lumber boards.

This doesn’t mean that you have to settle for unattractive flooring, though. Laminate is an inexpensive flooring choice that works well in basements, but you can also choose from tile, engineered hardwood, and much more. As long as the flooring material is not highly susceptible to water damage, it should be a good fit for the basement.

basement barBuilt-in Furniture

Built-in furniture is a great option for basement rooms. Not only does it increase the functionality of the room (neatly storing toys, movies, games, or the other items that would normally clutter a basement room), it also helps to create a sense of continuity within the room. By building shelves, cabinets, benches, etc. directly into the basement, you help to keep the room spacious and usable. The basement is usually the largest and most open room in your house, so consider built-in furniture to help keep it from becoming too busy. Again, if this seems too daunting a project, a contractor should be able to handle this quite easily.

If your basement is currently a dark room with a concrete floor that is used for little more than storage, consider a renovation. Finishing your basement is a great way to add a great deal of usable space to your house, and with the tips above, your basement room can be just as attractive and well-designed as the rest of your home.

Photo credits: Top & Bottom by Larry Malvin Photography / Fotolia

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