Refinishing your basement is a good way to obtain additional living space, as well as increasing your home’s re-sale value. But before plunging full-tilt into a remodeling project, it’s important to check carefully for all the possible—and expensive—stumbling blocks that might not come to light until you are already midway through your renovations.

-How many support pillars are present in your basement? How extensive is the remodeling you have in mind, and will the current structure support the changes you would like to make? Here are some things to consider before you get in too deeply:

-Window egress. If your remodel plans include adding a guest or bedroom, ample egress is legally required. There must be easy escape from these rooms, so if the basement doesn’t already have these, add the cost of installing additional windows to your bottom line.

-Are the floors level and the walls straight? How much reconfiguration will be needed to install flooring, paneling, etc., so that it won’t warp or shift with time?

-What potential drainage and ventilation issues might you encounter? Particularly humid climates may require the addition of a dehumidifier to keep the location dry and usable.

-How much of the pre-existing materials can be used in the remodel? How much in the way of new materials will be required?

When you have the answers to these questions, you’ll have a much clearer idea of how much you need to budget for the project, and whether the ultimate cost can support your plans.

And remember that Handyman Matters stands ready to assist you with this and with any other remodeling or repair projects around your home. Contact us at 1(800)FIX-MY-HOME or enter your zip code on our website at to get the phone number of the Handyman Matters location nearest you!