To Finish Or Not To Finish the Basement…

Our house is just about the perfect size for us – except that right now, our guest room furniture is in what WILL be a nursery (in about 6 weeks), and there are toys, craft supplies, puzzles, and stuffed animals in pretty much every room of our house. So when we bought the house last November, I had this grand idea that we would finish the basement to create a legitimate guest bedroom (or future kid bedroom) and a designated playroom. But when we started to get estimates from contractors on finishing the basement, they were way over what we wanted to spend. Sticker shock set in. We tossed around the idea of finishing it ourselves, but we had never tackled such a big project. 

We’re talking: 

  • Egress window
  • Insulation
  • Framing
  • Wiring/lighting
  • More insulation
  • Drywall
  • Mudding & taping
  • Primer & paint
  • Flooring
  • Doors
  • Trim & finish work


And then our friend Bryan, who knew about our basement-finishing dreams, called and said that he wanted to come down and spend several days helping Todd do the framing. That’s what you might call a good (crazy?) friend! It was all we needed to kickstart the project.

We got to work pretty much immediately. We hired a contractor to cut out the egress window, Todd put down moisture-blocking paint and the first layer of insulation, and then in 3 days (3!!) – Bryan and Todd pretty much completely framed the basement. 



We hired an electrician friend to do the wiring as soon as the framing was done. And shortly after that, my family came for a visit – so between Todd, my dad, my brother, and my father-in-law, the ceiling got drywalled. 

Todd is chipping away at the rest of the drywall during pretty much every free evening and weekend he has. Of course there is still a lot of work to be done, but we can see the rooms starting to take shape now. All of this has happened in less than three weeks – in-between work, kids, church, soccer, etc. 

We are saving somewhere around $8-10k by doing the job “ourselves” (with many, many thanks to our families and to Bryan and his family)!

Whether or not the project is completed before Baby arrives, I am totally enjoying watching this idea getting fleshed out and coming to life! 

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