So you’ve got a basement. And it’s ummm…unused or in need of a makeover? Maybe you’re thinking of a tricked out game room for the kids? Swanky man cave? Or perhaps just a space to relax and get away from it all? Whatever the goal, there are lots of eco-friendly ways to turn your basement into the cozy bonus room of your dreams. Take a look at our list of ideas to breathe new life into your basement without blowing up your carbon footprint.
- Add Insulation: Basements are often freezing cold. The temperature factor is what often keeps the space empty (except for storage). Add some eco-friendly insulation (wool, cork, recycled plastic and even old jeans!) to keep it warm without expanding your heating bill.
- Update Flooring: Update your floors using natural materials that are perfect for below ground use. Concrete, recycled rubber flooring, ceramic tile and natural stone are all green flooring options to consider for your makeover. Add a few throw rugs to retain the heat.
- Paint: There’s nothing that makes a space feel different and fresh like a brand new coat of paint. Choose a VOC-free paint (VOC=volatile organic compounds= carbon and other toxic chemicals and materials) in cozy color schemes.
- Move Things Around: You don’t have to purchase new furnishings to update your basement. Take a look around your house and pull together a chair from one room, an end table from another, a never-used lamp, an area rug and a few throw blankets, and you’ve got yourself a fully furnished basement for $0. Ask around, too. Your friends and family may be looking to hand off pieces of furniture (even pool tables, office furniture, foosball tables etc.) – perfect for your updated space.
- Bring in Plants: Nothing adds life to a cold, stark space quite like green, thriving plants. Some purifying houseplants will also filter the air of impurities. There are many varieties that need little attention and minimum to no sunlight for growth, and they’ll add warmth to your environment.
So the next time you head down the stairs to your basement, approach it from a different perspective. With a few tweaks and a small investment, your basement might soon become the most used space in your house! And as an added bonus: a livable basement adds value to your property!
Looking for more ways to update your home and your life to make them more sustainable and energy efficient? You’ve come to the right place! Visit us often at our Eco-Centric Blog, where we’re sharing eco-friendly ideas and tips, and follow our Facebook page and Twitter feed so you never miss out on the latest and greatest in the world of the green lifestyle. And keep coming back!