Untouched Basement + Nagging Wife = No Good.......... Help!? - Carpentry - DIY Chatroom Home Improvement Forum

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Old 07-01-2009, 01:44 AM   #1
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untouched basement + nagging wife = no good.......... help!?

I recently moved into my first house. Its about 25 years old and the couple who had it before my wife and I built it for their small retirement dream house. It's an amazing house Except, the basement. it was NEVER touched. my wife wants it 75% finished by the end of summer since I am a teacher and have all summer off.

I don't even know where to start. I have sketches of what she wants but am completely lost on how to start this monstrous project. I have a very basic understanding of this but these are the questions I have

1) level the concrete floors before I start to put up walls? or walls then floors?

2) the corner where my sump pump is going to be the "laundry room", anything I can do to make that look presentable?

3) furnace is smack dab in the middle planning on walling it in. with a door for access to it. any concern there?

4) terribly damp. small windows, little air. 2 de-humidifiers, still damp. what do I do?

5) there is a steel pole going length wise in the middle of the basement. put walls around it? or box it in with sheetrock?

6) god forbid we dont have a full bathroom down there. anything I can do to keep money in my pocket?


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Old 07-01-2009, 07:54 AM   #2
Join Date: Jan 2009
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How long have livedthere?
Might be a good reason they never finished it - water
We have a high water table here & I will never finish the basement
Its stays too damp, even w/2 dehumdifiers running
Each ones is like running an AC all the time - $$$

Windows - single pane - double pane?
Is there already plumbing in the floor for a bathroom?
Septic system or Town sewer?

You can cut down on the dampness, insulating the walls helps
There are many ways to do this & everyone has their own way
Some say one way will grow mold, some say other ways will

What are you going to put down for floors?
I go with indoor/outdoor carpeting due to being damp
So I never worried about the floor being level

A pic of the pipe & area would help for people to make suggestions


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Old 07-01-2009, 08:22 AM   #3
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NSH, Your pole, is it a pipe or a beam? Your project needs to be a win for the wife, then you. Start with her area first and keep the project small scale.

Rule # 1..... Happy wife ... Happy Life

I have decided to start with the laundry room and attached furnace area, encompassing about 1/3 of my basement. That way my wife won't be overwhelemd by the scope of the project and I can tinker evenings and weekends and still get out for a break. My workshop makeover will be last, my reward
As Scuba says, if you have 2 dehumidifiers going you want to be cautious about future moisture issues.
Why not plan out a laundry room, paint the floor for now, hang some cabinets and put in a counter top with folding area. Box over the sump but leave access around it.
Pace yourself, you don't want to wear down this early and be tired going back to school
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