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A finished basement is an appealing feature for any home buyer. It can be as large as your home’s foundation, giving you the opportunity to use that space for a variety of different purposes. Some people transform their basement into a guest bedroom, while others turn it into a game room with a pool table and a home theatre system. Still others use their finished basements as a home office, family room, or even an apartment that brings in monthly income. 

If you’re building a new house in West Virginia, you will most likely have to set that house on a full basement.  This is due to the lack of flat land in the mountainous Appalachian region. In fact, flat land is so scarce in our area that gently sloping property is often referred to as “West Virginia Flat.” 

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Since you will likely have a lot of extra space available under your home, you may want to consider finishing your basement and using it to enhance your living space.

Now, whether you finish your basement with the intention of turning it into a wine cellar or a home office, it is always a good idea to get a professional’s opinion. There are a lot of potential issues that can arise by trying to finish an older basement under an existing house. And if you’re thinking about building a new home in Morgantown, WV, a custom home builder can advise you on how you should go about building your basement according to how you want the space to be used. 

In the following paragraphs we will outline a few considerations that might convince you to finish your basement, as well as some reasons you should think long and hard about before you start construction.

Pros of a Finished Basement

  • Finishing your basement is an excellent way to increase your home’s resale value. It will create more living space in your home, and as your square footage increases so does your resale value.
  • A finished basement can give you an extra living room, spare bedroom, or entertainment room. Your basement usually runs the entire length of your house, which means it will act as a whole extra floor that you can divide into separate rooms or leave as one big room that serves multiple purposes. You could even create a self-contained apartment for a relative or to help generate monthly rental income!
  • Basement space offers a great deal of privacy from the rest of the house. It can become a comfortable room away from noise and distractions, or a room where you can make as much noise as you want without disturbing others. It’s a great spot to put that drum set or electric guitar your kids have been asking for without disturbing the neighbors, or set up that pottery studio you’ve always dreamt about. 

Cons of a Finished Basement

  • Basements that are fully below grade can be dark, making them feel cave-like without proper lighting. You can avoid this by choosing your interior decoration wisely with the goal to brighten and open up the space with plenty of artificial light, light-colored walls and ceilings, and lighter carpet or wood flooring.
  • Older basements often require more maintenance than the rest of the house in order to keep it clean and dry. However, if you’re building a new home with a custom home builder, your basement should fall under the same warranty as the rest of your new home. 

Putting It All Together

If you’re looking at building or buying a home in Morgantown, Fairmont, or the surrounding areas of north central West Virginia, you know that it’s tough to find a home that “checks all the boxes.” While finishing an old basement in an existing home could potentially cause a lot of headaches, adding a finished basement to a new custom home can help you create more living space, increase your home’s value, and offer a unique opportunity for special-use rooms that just wouldn’t work on the main levels of your home. 

Vision Homes is a Custom Home Builder in Morgantown, WV with over 25 years of experience in building homes in West Virginia and Pennsylvania. We’ve helped over 500 families turn their visions into reality by building homes they truly love.

If you’re interesting in learning more about the home building process, click here to download our free guide to building your new home. When you’re ready to talk, schedule a meeting with us where we can discuss your needs, wants, style, budget, and any concerns you may have.