Making Your Basement More Livable
Let’s face it - sometimes finishing the basement just isn’t in the budget. Instead of leaving the basement empty or utilizing the whole basement as a large storage area, consider expanding your living space with these simple fixes.
Area Rugs – Area rugs are a much cheaper option than carpeting the entire floor. Area rugs define a space and give it a cozier feel. Have a TV that doesn’t fit well in the living room? Bug a large area rug and create a family area in the basement.
Less Clutter – Keeping all your extra boxes and equipment in one place will make the rest of the basement feel more open and will keep clutter from getting out of hand. Invest in a few large plastic tubs or cardboard boxes and neatly stack them in any out-of-the-way corner. Even better, cheaply create a small storage room by hanging a clothes line and a thick curtain.
Dehumidifier – People feel most comfortable in their home when humidity levels are between 30 - 50%. Dehumidifiers remove extra moisture, musty odors, and the clammy feeling that comes with too much humidity. Dehumidifiers also keep mold and mildew at bay, which decreases symptoms of asthma and allergies. Some dehumidifiers, such as the EZ Breathe System, not only removes moisture and musty odors, but also cleans and circulates the air in your basement.
Plants – Many plants naturally clean the air in your home, filtering out harmful VOCs (Volatile Organic Compounds) found in cleaners, carpet, furniture, and dyes. Plants are also known to relax and reenergize – and you don’t necessarily need bright sunlight for a plant to thrive. The Snake Plant, which is known for filtering formaldehyde out of the air, and Golden Pothos, also known for filtering formaldehyde, both grow well in low-light environments. Mother Nature Network has a good article on plants that improve air quality.
Wall Art – Adding a painting, photograph, or colorful piece of wall art to your basement spruces up an otherwise gray and drab concrete wall.
Utilize Lamps – Instead of relying on the pull-cord lights that never seem to give off enough light, supplement with a variety of lamps. Don’t have a large decorating budget? Used lamps are more affordable, and older, out-of-style lamps can be easily updated with a new lampshade.