Finishing the Basement: Now It’s Getting Real

My mother in law was up a couple weekends ago from Pennsylvania for Eloise’s birthday party. (Sidenote: She’s ONE? How?!). I was talking to her about the home, the basement, and organizing the house in general. Basically I was apologizing for the condition my home was in. She gave me a good reality check because in the scheme of things, we had only been living in this home for seven weeks. That isn’t even two months! In that time we have done more unpacking and renovating than anyone should. So totally a tangent, but that’s my excuse to not give an excuse for being more consistent with blogging. I have been a little busy. One of these days I will get my act together and be more organized!

Carrying on, if you’ve followed along with the basement series, we started with the before, and last was the framing. Now we are onto the more glamorous and big impact items- sheetrock and drywall! Cue the confetti! This is where it gets exciting.


From this angle is where you would be walking in from the garage. This is the workout area, and the doorway to the left is the guest room. Crazy awesome, right?! That little nook under the stairs is going to be a fun little area for the kids if they want to join me while I work out.


Guest room!


Isn’t it a thing of beauty?


It is a little harder to tell (and photograph), but this is the inside of the guestroom. Yes, it’s small. But it’s just a guest room. Guests aren’t meant to stay forever 😉


And here’s the office! Where the door is propped up is where a window will be cut in. Just use your imagination to picture the beautiful natural light. Looks good, right?!


Backing up a bit, looking at the office down the hallway.

We are getting close! I’ve had some people ask why we are rushing a renovation when we just moved in. I wouldn’t call this renovation rushed, rather pressured. I’ve mentioned before that Marcus works from home, and since we have three little people under foot, the first floor office wasn’t a viable option for him. So we turned the upstairs office into a playroom for the kids, and that’s why we are building him an office in the basement. Less noise. Less disruption. And we also have guests staying at our home all the time, so we figured to do it all at once and finish off the guestroom as well.

We are almost done!
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Finishing the Basement: We Have Walls!

Sorry for the delay. Between my computer charger going missing (it was in my living room…) and misplacing my camera cord (it was in the bag…), I was losing my mind. I have found out I am not one of those bloggers who are super organized and can do projects and document them at the same time.

So, here we are! Basement progress! I left off here with the before pictures of the basement and included what our plans were. I can’t even tell you how awesome it is coming along! Even better than the plans.

The lumber has arrived! Please don’t mind the trash… we just moved in!


My awesome dad helping us frame in the first wall!


That’s my brother. This picture pretty much sums him up. He’s off the market ladies, sorry 😉


Framing up the second wall! This is going to be the wall that separates the office and the mechanical/storage area.


Different angle, but looking at from inside the office.


Check it out! Looks like a room! This is the workout area, and that doorway will open into the guest room.


The little hallway into the guest room.


This is the guest room closet. We had to hide the air conditioning unit, so we bumped it out to make a huge closet. It works out nice and makes up for the smaller room, so that guests can store suitcases and other items in here.


Back over to the office, this will be the closet. Conveniently hiding a giant plumbing pipe.


My handy hubby putting up a wall! He did a ton of the work himself, did I mention that? I am so proud of him. On top of working a full time job and balancing a family, somehow he learned how to finish off a basement as well. So thankful for that man!


Here’s that wall put up. Have you seen anything more beautiful? 😉


Instead of installing baseboard heat, we opted for an in-wall heater in each room. Much more cost effective option, and perfect for the amount the rooms will be used.


These aren’t as exciting, but you can see some of the electrical work that was done. Electrical work is definitely beyond our skill level, so we had my uncle who is well qualified to do this for us. He installed all the outlets, overhead lighting, heaters, and anything else that involved possible electrocution.

Sorry the pictures aren’t the greatest. Most of the work we did was at night after the kids went to bed, so naturally all these are with flash.

So that’s it for the framing and electrical. I know, not super exciting. Next up we will check out the sheetrock and the things that REALLY make a difference! Stay tuned!

 

Here are some of the tools that made our life so much easier:

Impact gun

Table saw

Fastener tool

Work bench ladder

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Finishing the Basement: Before Pictures and Plans

Two weeks into owning our new home, my husband looks at me during dinner. “Want to finish the basement off tonight?” Um, yes.

It was something that we were planning on having done, just the timing was never set in stone. Now is as good as time as ever! We actually really needed it done because Marcus works from home and with three kids under four, he needed an office way away from the noise. The house has a first floor office but we are using that as a playroom while the kids are young and noisy… We learned the hard way in our last home that kids on the same level as work does not go well!

So that night after the kids went to bed, we demo’d a small room that had been framed out and moved all our things into the unfinished portion of the basement and into the garage. What can I say, when we decide on something we get it done.

So this is what it looked like when everything was cleared out. Boring, I know. But at least you can see the general layout.

Stairs to the right of the frame, garage door to the left.

Same area, looking straight on.

View from the garage door looking in. Where you see the junk is where a wall will be for the mechanicals and storage.

Here’s a mockup of the basement. The little room on the top wall was the one we removed. If you’ve watched the progress over on Instagram I’ve shown a general layout of what we are going to do. 

 

You can see by our very official green lines of our anticipated layout. It has changed slightly since we physically laid it out, but not by much. Basically we are dividing the basement into four areas: office, guest room, workout/mudroom area, and mechanicals/storage.


We are undecided which room is going to be which at this point. I am team guest room on the right. My reasons are:

  1. More room for a bed
  2. More room for guests (which we have a lot) and the accompanying baggage that comes with them. So room for suitcases, crib for baby, etc.
  3. Because it will look better aesthetically…

Marcus wants the bigger room to be the office. His reasons are:

  1. He pays the mortgage so he should get the bigger room.

I mean I can totally see his point of view. So we will see where we end up 🙂 But I digress…

Now onto the cool stuff! Here is the space in 3D so you can really visualize the layout. Awesome, right? It isn’t perfect (there won’t be a wall in the stairs obs) but it’s close.

   

So that is part one. There is a lot more coming! Stay tuned 😉