Topic Author
Posts: 4282
Joined: Sun Nov 05, 2000 3:10 am

Cost Of Finishing A Basement?

Thu Nov 08, 2007 6:37 pm

Hey all,

Here's the deal: My sister and I own both units of a duplex. Thanks to Calgary's incredible economy each side has made well over $100,000 in equity already (one gained over $100k in less than a year). Both have only partially finished basements. We'd like to totally finish both sides to make the houses that much more attractive when we sell, therefore giving us more profit. Nothing fancy, say 2 bedrooms, a bathroom and a modest living space/rec area type thing.

Ideally I'd like to turn them into basement suits as both have separate doors from the outside leading into the basements, but my area isn't zoned properly for basement suites to be legal. Pisses me off.

Anyway, just want to know what costs were involved from people on here who have been through it. I'd like to hear from both people who did it mostly on their own, and from those who hired most of the work out to professionals.

Oh yeah, and there's no "stubbed in" connections for a bathroom. It would have to be totally done from scratch.


Posts: 10836
Joined: Fri May 21, 2004 12:04 pm

RE: Cost Of Finishing A Basement?

Fri Nov 09, 2007 1:47 am

I was quoted from $20k to $30k to have my 750 sq.ft. basement finished. I had it done by the builder for a discount as incentive to contract on the house, and what I have to say as caveat is to make sure that they know exactly what you want, and make sure you know exactly what they're promising.

Involve yourself in every part of the design and stay on top of the contractors while working without making yourself into a pest. If you want to know what you're getting prior to the work being finished it requires supervision and accountability.

Basements are great, but you have to make sure that you have an adequate heating and airconditioning plan (make sure to look at the tonnage required for HVAC) and make sure that you have a proper dehumidification plan (mold and mildew ruin homes) and make sure that if you don't already have a sump and pump that you get one installed, and that you install an independently powered backup for the main pump. One more thing.....if you get a bathroom and you're not stubbed you'll need a separate pump and sump for that room. It's never going to be the same as a gravity powered toilet, so don't expect it to, and take into account the extra expense of running the additional lines.

Go buy a book on the subject, and read up.
Is my Pan Am ticket to the moon still good?
Posts: 21391
Joined: Mon Nov 15, 2004 3:51 pm

RE: Cost Of Finishing A Basement?

Fri Nov 09, 2007 1:50 am

Quoting DL021 (Reply 1):
was quoted from $20k to $30k to have my 750 sq.ft. basement finished.

Do it yourself, for half that . . .

I did.

If you know how that is.

It's more fun that way too. Sense of satisfaction and accomplishment.
Posts: 10836
Joined: Fri May 21, 2004 12:04 pm

RE: Cost Of Finishing A Basement?

Fri Nov 09, 2007 1:59 am

Quoting ANCFlyer (Reply 2):
Do it yourself, for half that . . .

I did.

I got them to do it for $15k, and my neighbor and I did his ourselves and we're at the $12k mark without the bathroom finished (although we've purchased everything but the toilet and sink). Drywall ceilings, wiring, plumbing (except for hot water which was done by a pro) and the framing was all done by us (didja hear the one about the doctor, the salesguy and the lawyer who built a fence?).....

We're about $4k away from being done, but that's including a kick-ass bar and pool table, so it's doable.
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