Home Improvement/Basement Waterproofing/ROI
Wednesday, October 10, 2012 • 11:02am
Most times the Return On Investment (ROI) for home improvements is measured in percentages. A mid-level kitchen or bath remodel usually represents an increase in the homes’ value, but less than the cost of the remodel.
Finishing a basement can be a good investment. According to cost versus value surveys conducted annually by Remodeling magazine, the average return on investment for a basement project nationally is currently around 75 cents on the dollar.
Home Improvements such as finishing the basement can be costly. Before finishing the basement you must make sure it is dry and healthy.
Finishing a Basement
Are most of the basements in your area finished? If you live in an area where it a standard to have a finished basement not having one can be a minus when selling.
When buying a home, the condition of the basement is one of the most important factors that a young family will consider. This is where some expansion of living space can occur without a costly addition. The buyers want to look at the basement like a clean, blank canvas and envision where the playroom or home gym will go. Buyers want everything in the basement like crack repairs and waterproofing already done for them. They don't want a house with basement issues.
Here in New Jersey a below grade basement is not calculated in the square footage of the home for purposes of Appraised Value of the property. However if your basement is in poor condition or has evidence of water intrusion it can detract from the value of the home.
Any signs that there was once water in your basement such as water marks on the walls, musty odors and mildew will cause great concern to a potential buyer of your home. You can put your house up for sale so long as all water defects are disclosed. However, the market will penalize you if you take this course in the form of lower offers for your home.
Before finishing your basement you have to make sure the basement is dry. To correct basement moisture problems, it is necessary to understand where the water and moisture is coming from. Water and moisture enter from the outside of the building to the basement interior four ways:
1. Water through the floor.
2. Water through the walls
3. Water vapor through the walls and floor
4. Humidity through the air
Dryness is vital to a healthy basement. If your basement is damp or floods on occasion your first concern must be in controlling the water that invades it. Cracks can be repaired or a French Drain and sump pump can be installed. The French Drain and sump pump will control numbers 1 & 2, and then you need a pump with an alternative power source. We use a water powered emergency sump pump for when the electricity goes out.
Once the water intrusion is brought under control the next step is to deal with the water vapor and humidity. To remove the water vapor and humidity in the basement a ventilation system is required. A ventilation system will replace the air in the basement with fresher air from the upper floors four to six times per day automatically with no bucket to empty or filter to replace.
A simple dehumidifier will not work because it does not promote air circulation and only operate during the warmer months. A basement ventilation system such as the E-Z Breathe ventilation system will remove humidity and give air exchanges continuously throughout the day.
Now that you have the basement dry you have protected the investment in finishing it. A finished basement can offer many benefits, from increasing your home's storage space to giving you the space for that man cave you've always wanted.
A-1 Basement Solutions gives free basement health inspections to New Jersey homeowners. Contact A-1 Basement Solutions at 908-322-1313, http://A-1Basements.com for a free in-home inspection and detailed quote.
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Doug Lynch is a basement expert from Westfield, NJ where he lives with his wife Kelli and their dogs Sammy and Angie. Doug teaches a class at Westfield Adult School “Keeping Your Basement Dry” and is the Author of Basements 101 Everything You Need to Know About Your Basement. Doug has testified in NJ Superior Court as an Expert Witness in Basement Waterproofing and does seminars for local Real Estate Agents to educate them about basements. Doug is the owner of A-1 Basement Solutions in Scotch Plains and authors the popular BASEMENT SCHOOL Blog.
The opinions expressed herein are the writer's alone, and do not reflect the opinions of TheAlternativePress.com or anyone who works for TheAlternativePress.com. TheAlternativePress.com is not responsible for the accuracy of any of the information supplied by the writer.