If you have a finished basement that’s simply sitting around, chances are you’ve mulled over what to do with it time and time again. Turning your basement into a comfortable, livable space can help you use some of the square footage you’ve got down there. Your basement should include elements that work for your home and your family so you can make the most out of it.

Whether you prioritize recreation and entertainment or want to build a multipurpose space, having a clear vision of what you want can help you create a room you’re proud of. To point you toward your dream space, here are a few ideas you might want to consider:

  • 1. Prioritize Entertainment

Relaxation and entertainment are often priorities when putting a finished basement together, and for good reason. Whether your basement is your primary entertainment room or a second space for the kids, it’s worthwhile to have an area of this floor designated to comfort. You can consider building a home theater or putting in a cozy couch and television to meet your needs.

You can even plan a blank wall for a projector screen if you’re looking to get that movie theater feel for a fraction of the cost. It’s all about what your family would most enjoy.

  • 2. Consider Your Guests

Sometimes, the basement is best used for an entirely different kind of entertainment — hosting guests! Basements can make for amazing party spaces, whether you’re lending it to your kids for their slumber parties or planning your next Super Bowl bash. How you design your room is up to your needs. Consider what you’re missing when you entertain in your home and go from there.

Installing a killer sound system can be ideal if you like to bump the music, and basic features like a kitchenette or bathroom can make your basement feel more complete. Even a simple kitchen setup with a fridge to keep your drinks cool and a catch-all sink can make a huge difference in your basement.

  • 3. Go for Versatility

If your space might do well for multiple purposes — or if you might convert your basement over time — it might be in your best interest to plan for a versatile build. If you’re an older adult, you might have family over and want an area for the grandkids to play while still prioritizing home office space.

The most important things to prioritize are accessibility and insulation to create a warm and dry space. Think about whether you want doors for a walkout basement or larger windows to let natural light in. Do your research and plan accordingly. 

  • 4. Try Multitasking

If you simply can’t decide the best purpose for your basement, you don’t always have to pick just one. If you want a home office, entertaining space and recreation room, you can have it all. You can build your basement with specific rooms or with one particular area closed off for quiet activities.

Even if your basement doesn’t have multiple rooms, you can always create private spaces with tools like curtains or dividers to separate tasks.

  • 5. Add Storage Solutions

Unfortunately, basements — even finished ones — can succumb to a life of becoming a dumping ground for the family’s gadgets and junk piles. Don’t let this happen in your house — you’ve worked too hard for that.

Even if it’s not the primary purpose of your basement, lending some room to storage solutions can keep your space clean, neat and free of clutter.

Finding some creative shelving or building a closet to put all of your extra bits can keep everything tidy. Organizing baskets and cabinets can also ensure you’re keeping everything in line, so your organization system is both aesthetically pleasing and sustainable. With room to move around, you can comfortably host guests or simply relax in your basement without the stress of clutter looming over you.

  • Try These Finished Basement Ideas

When designing your finished basement, the most important part is getting to know your needs and planning for whatever would serve your family best. Whether you want a place to host, get work done or kick back and relax, you can dive into your project and stack another layer onto your dream home.


Holly Welles is the editor of The Estate Update and writes home improvement pieces to help readers figure out what to do with their living spaces. You can find more of her advice by following her on Twitter @HollyAWelles.