35 Diverse Finished Basement Ideas (2018)

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Nicely finished basement with TV, sofa and soft blue walls.

I love basements.  For me, it’s all bonus space.  Plus, it’s usually the coolest space in the house temperature-wise.  It’s also casual and for me comfortable.  While I prefer a walk-out basement with windows, I’m fine if the entire thing is submerged underground.

Below is our extensive collection of basement design ideas (photos).

Large basement family room with TV and fireplace
Small basement media room with projector TV
Beautiful basement family room totally refinished with recessed lighting, carpeting and large sofa.
Finished basement with family room with new sofa and chair.
Spacious basement bathroom with vanity and tub.
Basement bedroom with en suite done in gray and white.
Cozy basement family room with fireplace, recessed lighting and low cost, but stylish furniture.
Large open basement with bar and tile flooring
Basement mother-in-law suite with kitchen and dining area.
Nicely finished basement with TV, sofa and soft blue walls.
Spacious basement man cave rec room.
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Source: Zillow DigsTM


Rooms to put into a basement

As you can see from our basement ideas gallery above, many different types of rooms can be included in a basement.  In our neck of the woods, many people include a suite that they can rent for extra income.  It’s not a bad idea, because if you choose not to rent, you get a kitchen, living room and bathroom.  At the very least it’s a great guest room.

Here’s a list of rooms and ideas for your basement:

  • Rentable suite:  A great idea to generate income.  However, there’s something a bit disconcerting about having a stranger living in your home.
  • Family room:  This is a no-brainer.  The basement is an ideal space for a large, casual family room for watching TV, playing video games or just hanging out.
  • Bar:  Many home bars are situated in the basement.
  • Man cave:  Many man caves, with the home bar, are situated in the basement.
  • Game room:  I love game rooms because I enjoy foosball and table tennis.  I also don’t mind playing pool, but I’m not very good.  Growing up we had an air hockey table and table tennis table.  When our kids are a bit older, I want to get these fun table games… although I’m not sure how much kids play these things these days given all the device options available.
  • Bathroom:  If you’re doing a full scale basement reno, it’s a great idea to include a bathroom, even if it’s just a half bath.
  • Bedroom:  If you don’t want to go full mother-in-law suite, consider a basic bedroom.  Teenagers tend to like residing in basements.  I did growing up and loved it.
  • Exercise space:  With the concrete floor, you have the solid surface for weight lifting.  Just put a viable gym floor surface down and voila, you have a great home gym.
  • Craft/work space:  You can also turn a portion or all the space in a basement into a hobby area, be it for crafting, a shop or model trains… whatever your hobbies are.
  • Home office:  My home office is currently in our walk-out basement.  It’s quite nice and works well for me.

How much do basement renovations cost?

This is one of those impossible reno cost questions.  A full, high-end basement reno can easily cost more than $100,000, especially if you put in a kitchen and bathroom.  On the low end, if can cost a few thousand if you do it yourself and keep it to lower cost rooms such as a basic family room and perhaps a bedroom with no frills.

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