Finishing a Basement

Weichert Realtors
January 26, 2014

Sometimes a critical selling point for a property is in its basement. The benefits of having a finished basement are substantial. Homeowners can relish in the extra space for themselves and their families. By using the area as an extra bedroom, living or recreational space, a finished basement is such an attractive asset in adding significant value to a home.

It is always advantageous for homeowners to be able to increase their property’s worth but not all basements are created equal. If you are thinking of investing your time and money into a basement remodel, there are a number of important factors to consider.


The International Residential Code (IRC) has set out requirements that must be considered before taking any action. Floor-to-ceiling height has to be at least 7 feet (6 feet for the bathrooms), handrails must be included on the staircases and along with the windows and doors, everything has to meet proper measurements and dimensions.  The IRC has laid out these important prerequisites as to plan ahead for when people need to get in or out in case of an emergency situation. A contractor can also be hired to assist in heating, cooling and controlling moisture as to comply with the code. Waterproofing walls, adding vents or drains, and installing a sump pump can all be done to keep the foundation strong.

A homeowner has to consider the cost of a finished basement but also the cost to conform to the standards set by the International Residential Code. Meeting the building codes are crucial and if the requirements are not met, added expenses can be tacked on if you need to raise the ceiling, lower the floor, rebuild staircases, etc. A homeowner must take the cost of investment into account before taking any action. But with all things considered, a basement is an essential part to any property and finishing it stands as a worthwhile investment.

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