Tag Archives: Basement remodel

Basement Remodel, part deux

In the second post about our basement remodel, you get to see the actual layout of the basement.  It went from the blank slate that we began with – concrete walls and floors with two crawlspace entrances to an actual room.  Although phase 3 was another part of infrastructure.

PHASE 3: we were still in infrastructure mode. This included the wiring for the electronics his speakers, the projector, the screen, the components, the networking all of the stuff that sounds like the adults in the Charlie Brown cartoons when it is explained to me (whamp-whamp-whamp, whamp-whamp-whamp). We had this done another two or three months after we finally finished the electrical.

PHASE 4: this would be the insulation and drywall. A lot of people could not understand why we decided to insulate the basement. They didn’t see the entire “infrastructure” Stan had installed for his picture and sound. Nor did they hear him talking about it. The rest of the house needed some insulation against all of that. I strongly suggested we get some long sleeve shirts and jeans, gloves and face mask and get to stuffing some insulation. This would save us some money ( I was starting to feel some anxiety about the electronics he had plans for and what that was going to do to the budget). Stan did not share my enthusiasm and wanted no part of possibly getting fine bits of fiberglass from the insulation in his cloths. He drove around several home construction sites and found an insulation guy. They came over on a Sunday and finished the job is less than six hours. We got a higher grade insulation than we would have purchased ourselves and still ended up with a better price had we purchased that grade ourselves. You have got to love tradesmen when they give you a fair price.

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This was the bar area. The black tank is the plumbing for the shop and bar sink.

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This was the theater area. The layout ended up getting switched around later; with the screen being on the right and the projector on the left.

Drywall was a long and messy process. I was very pleased with our drywaller. His crew consisted of him and occasionally his son. It took longer, but the work is exceptional. I would not have traded him for someone with a larger crew that could have finished in a shorter amount of time. There was some dust that came about due to the work, but it could have been SO MUCH worse. He had HUGE dry-vacs that he used to get the dust up each day, he had a sticky pad that they stepped on when they came out of the basement, and the cleaned up each night before leaving. It took us about three weeks. When he was done it was amazing…we had a basement that we could now really see what the final product would look like.

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The ceiling in the theater area is angled. Almost like a cove ceiling.

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After we got the drywall finished, it was time to pick out paint and flooring.  We had walls, now it was time to get started on the making it beautiful.

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Basement Remodel anyone…

As promised I am going to give a rundown of our basement remodel. I want to say ahead of time that I began writing this post a couple of months ago and thought I had begun the process of posting it; but looking back on some former post I realized that I had not.  I went back through my files and found all of the writing and now I begin again.  At the time of the original post the bar area had not been completed yet because 1) we felt it would require custom cabinets and we aren’t quite sure how we want to design this; and 2) my husband was tired of the project. Although it is his baby, he said at one point it took something out of him mentally to think about it anymore.

We are DIY’ers, but for this project we contracted out all of the work. Sure we could have laid the floor or painted the walls or even done the insulation (we discussed these projects thoroughly); but our schedules just didn’t allow for it. Stan’s business is doing well and sometimes I feel like I am a chauffeur for my Babydoll (I can’t figure it out). If we had of done more work on this project, I would not be showing/telling you about this project because we still would have been working on it. So let me begin…

We started a over a year ago, in May of 2013. We had several contractors come out to give us estimates to have it done by one company/person.  After some pretty amazing presentations we decided we were going to contract this out ourselves. Why, you ask? Because 1) Most if not all, of the estimates were coming in at around $25-30k and that did not include the electronics (I knew we were going to spend major bucks on the electronics because anything else was NOT going to fly with my husband, no way, no how would that fly); 2) the finishes weren’t included in that estimate (finishes are the really nice trim work, high end mini fridge, furniture, etc.); and 3) we decided we wanted to pay cash for as much work as possible, if we went with a company they would have finished within 3-6 weeks (yeah!!) but a deposit would have been needed at the beginning – $12.5k/15 – and final payment at the end (booo!). So we broke it up in phases.

PHASE 1: Framing – Stan’s side business puts him in contact with all types of construction trades. One day while doing a job he came across a framer. They had a conversation that lead to him coming buy and giving us an estimate that we didn’t feel cheated over – because he is used doing larger jobs, he was able to get a lot of the material for less – so we set it up. They came over on a weekend and we ended up with a framed basement. This lead up to what Stan termed the infrastructure phase but I called it phase 2.

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PHASE 2: Plumbing and Electrical – the basement was not plumbed for any type of bathroom or sink; hence we had no drain. I knew that I was going to add a very small salon in a section of the basement and we wanted to have sink in the bar area. I DID NOT want to have them bust up my floor to put in a drain because that was going to be an extra expense. We did some research and found that there is a drain system that you can purchase that shoots the water up. I’m not explaining this too well, I’m not a plumber, but it shoots the water up. There is probably a better explanation that Stan could probably give you, but he isn’t writing this, I am and all I can say is the water goes up with the help of some pressure. As far as electrical went, we needed a lot of outlets installed. Stan’s theory was it is better to have too many than not enough. We had tons of lighting, lighting for the bar area, the salon, the theater area, the equipment area, and the small area off to the side of the theater. The plumbing and electrical were done about 3 months after the framing was completed. This phase actually took us several months because the electrician we found (thanks soooo much to a coworker for recommending him, he is the best) was so awesome that we ended up having him install lighting for the patio along with electrical outlets on the patio.

I have no pictures of this phase because it was plumbing and electric.  It took us a minute to get it all done, but pictures of the end work would really make no sense to you.  Trust me when I say it made us very happy. Smile

Because this can be a really exhausting post, I’ve decided to break this up into a multi-part series.  Stay tuned for more post.

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