Life Underground: 10 Beautiful Basement Makeovers

Is it time to give your basement a new look? Because many underground living spaces suffer from the same problems, such as low ceilings and small windows, you'll find that lots of homeowners and designers have already hit on some great solutions for making the most of these downstairs spaces. A well-executed basement makeover can provide your family with extra living space, and may even save you the time, money, and hassle of moving to a larger home. Before embarking on an extreme basement makeover, however, think carefully about how the project could best benefit your family. Do you need space for a special hobby? Do you want to showcase a favorite collection? Do you need a home office, or would a place for teenagers make more sense? Think about resources you already have in the house. For example, do you have mismatched furniture you could repurpose to save money in the basement? The right furniture is important; smart furniture placement can help create multiple work/living spaces in one large area. To find ideas and inspiration for your own basement renovation, check out these 10 basement makeovers and take note of what makes each one work.

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  1. Beautifully Divided


    Popular HGTV designer Candice Olson proves once again that she can transform any space into a comfortable and functional family area. The island behind the sectional divides this basement into two separate spaces, one for living and one for craft projects. In a smart touch, the TV can be viewed from both areas.

  2. Special Needs Reno


    The owners of this home renovated the basement to make it more family-friendly and to create a space for the therapies their son receives almost daily. This makeover works because of the uncluttered and calm yet cheerful atmosphere. Vinyl flooring and Ikea cabinetry add to the simple beauty.

  3. Family Hangout


    This walk-out basement belongs to a family that has four kids who love to hang out. The long, narrow space is divided into three distinct areas: one for Ping-Pong, one for TV viewing and lounging, and—at the far end of the room—a laptop bar for homework and computer games. Any wonder that the kids like to hang out here?

  4. Pool, Anyone?


    This charming basement makeover from Dixie Delights was featured on Remodelaholic for good reason. Not only is it the perfect-size game room, but its space-saving built-in banquette also provides cozy, comfortable seating. Floor-length drapes give the room added height, while a chandelier fills the space with both direct and ambient light.

  5. Fine Living


    There's no reason why underground living can't be as sophisticated as living at—or above—ground level. This basement makeover pulls out all the stops with its comfortable seating arrangement, towering floor lamps, and colorful art and accents. The neutral-hued rug does its part to define the space.

  6. Laundry Room Plus


    If your laundry room is relegated to the basement, take a design cue from this space. Housed in a built-in cabinet and concealed behind bifold doors, the washer and dryer can be easily hidden from view whenever the need arises. The TV and comfy chair might be just enough to make doing the laundry a pleasure.

  7. Basement Playroom


    Wide-open space and plenty of built-in shelves make this a fantastic basement playroom. Of course, great light, golden-toned hardwood floors, and a bold color mix mean that it's a space the whole family can enjoy.

  8. Home Office


    These designers made good use of the often neglected space beneath the stairs by introducing a built-in desk and shelves. Fitting a home office into such a compact space leaves the majority of the room free for other uses. The adjacent room houses the laundry area. /

  9. Kid-Friendly Playroom


    Bright colors, toys, and space to play make this basement totally kid-friendly. So does the practical mix of vinyl flooring and carpeting, including a hopscotch game made with carpet squares. A metal dividing screen can be used to partition off a section of the room for some adult enjoyment.

  10. Basement Gym


    As this basement makeover demonstrates, it doesn't take much to create your own personal gym. Positioned on either side of the support pole, a stationary bike and treadmill are close companions in a modest amount of space.

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