How do I hire a contractor to finish or remodel my basement?
To hire the best contractor, you need to spend some time comparing pros in your area. Search online for top-rated basement refinishers and remodelers, and check out the customer reviews and photos on their profiles. Here are some questions to ask yourself as you’re browsing their profiles:
- How responsive and communicative are they?
- Did they finish preview basement remodeling projects by the deadline?
- Do they have enough experience finishing basements?
- Do the contractors offer fair pricing?
- How is their craftsmanship?
License requirements for contractors vary by state, so check to see if your contractor needs to be licensed before you hire. You should always hire a contractor who has the proper credentials.
Before you hire a contractor, however, get written estimates. Contact at least three to five basement refinishers to receive price quotes and ask questions. Hire the contractor you feel has the most experience, great craftsmanship and fair pricing.
How much does finishing a basement cost?
The average cost to finish a basement is $8,448. Factors that affect this cost include whether you need to install a bathroom (and hence plumbing), as well as how much electrical work needs to be done. The square footage of the basement also correlates with price, with more expensive flooring like hardwood or tile costing more. The same goes for all materials.
Talk to top-rated basement refinishers in your neighborhood to find out how much you can expect to pay. And read the cost guide for basement finishing to learn more about the cost factors.
Is it worth finishing a basement?
Finishing a basement could be worth the cost if you plan to use the space. If you’re planning on selling your home in the future, note that several past studies and reports found that there is some return on investment for basement remodels. However, how much you recoup will depend on your particular home and real estate market. It’s important to have realistic expectations for the value that a finished basement will add to your home. To find out if you should finish, remodel or refinish your basement, talk to a real estate expert and basement refinishers near you.
What's the best floor for a basement?
Choosing the best floor for a basement begins with knowing what not to install. Anything that absorbs moisture like hardwood and laminate flooring are typically not the best choices. The most moisture-resistant choice is an epoxy floor, which effectively forms a moisture seal. Other options include ceramic tile, vinyl or rubber flooring.
In what order should I finish my basement?
Finishing your basement starts with planning. It’s important to have carefully designed plans, as well as permits from your local government. You should also find a general contractor or basement refinisher to help you with the planning and construction process.
The first step in building is usually the framing and insulation, followed by routing electrical wire and wiring your receptacles and outlets. This is followed by plumbing. Once plumbing is complete, the next step is usually hanging drywall and mudding, taping and sanding it. After this comes adding doors and trim, and then flooring.
Are there ways to be safe if I hire a general contractor when social distancing?
If you decide to hire a general contractor, avoid any physical contact, don’t shake hands, keep 6 feet of distance between you and the pro and sanitize all involved surfaces. Also, use digital platforms to communicate and make payments.
What’s the best way to set up a consultation or an appointment with a general contractor during the COVID-19 pandemic?
To set up a consultation or appointment with a general contractor during the COVID-19 pandemic, start by performing an online search for local professionals near you.
Message the contractor, and see if they are willing to set up a video consultation call instead of an in-person site visit. With video chat, the contractor may be able to assess the scale of the project, give you better information on what needs to be done and perhaps provide an estimate. Be sure to discuss virtual payments, as well as general strategies for staying safe.
Can I use digital payments to pay for general contractor services?
Currently, many general contractors are using common digital payment services like PayPal, Venmo, Square Cash, Zelle, Google Pay and more. And more will likely adopt these and similar platforms as coronavirus continues to force companies to take on digital capabilities.
Contact general contractors beforehand to discuss whether they accept digital payments, and take all necessary measures to meet social distancing recommendations. You can also compare general contractors side-by-side online to see which ones accept digital payments.
How can I find out if a general contractor is considered an essential COVID-19 service provider?
To find out whether a general contractor is considered essential in your area during the current coronavirus pandemic, visit your city or state’s government website, which will have information on essential services.
Find information on national recommendations by visiting CISA’s Identifying Critical Infrastructure During COVID-19 webpage. However, not all jurisdictions follow CISA’s definitions of critical infrastructure.
What is the best waterproof flooring for a basement?
There are several great options for waterproof basement flooring. For example, epoxy floors are waterproof but are thicker and sturdier than paint. Make sure the concrete substrate has been prepared for application.
Tile is a designer’s dream, giving you a moisture-resistant surface that’s infinitely customizable. Rubber sheets or tiles are also good waterproof options, particularly for playrooms, workout areas or laundry rooms.
Vinyl tiles and planks imitate wood or other materials very convincingly, provide moisture resistance and last a long time. And sheet vinyl is affordable and a great waterproofing solution for those in need of quick fixes.