Although sometimes overlooked, basements add valuable square footage to your home. However, if the basement is dark, you’re less inclined to take advantage of it. Dimension Design-Build-Remodel can help make your basement the place to be. “Making your basement warm and inviting includes getting creative in brightening the space,” said Dimension Inc. president and CEO David Kallie, MCR, CKBR, CAPS.

When remodeling your basement, consider these features to lighten your lower level:

Install, Replace, or Enhance Your Windows

A requirement for a basement as part of the building code is an egress window. “An egress window is a good start to bring light to the space, but it should not be the only source of light to help make the space more inviting,” David said.

If your basement is above ground, you can install windows or make your windows even bigger to let natural light and warmth into the space. In addition, it may help to buy translucent window treatments.

If your basement is under ground and you cannot install or enhance windows, you can create the same effect. A recessed box in the wall filled with small accent lights can add a lighter feel to the room.

Add a Mixture of Lights

Another way to brighten the space is to add man-made light to the room. “We recommend a mix of ambient and task lighting,” David said. “Ambient lighting is the primary light source, while task lighting is secondary, used for performing specific tasks like reading, working, or conversing.”

Ambient lighting can include recessed lights installed into the ceiling or adjustable track lights, while desk or floor lamps can be used for task lighting.

Incorporate Light into the Walls and Floor

The square footage of your basement will seem bigger with lighter walls and floors. Try a warm paint tone like cream or light tan on the walls, with an accent wall in a light yellow or light blue. When it comes to the ceiling, use off-white instead of plain white paint. Because off-white is a touch darker, it will make your ceiling seem taller than it is.

Remember that the higher the gloss level of the paint, the more it will reflect off the walls. “Using more neutral colors instead of more saturated tones is best,” David said. “Saturated tones will make a space seem darker and smaller.”

Glossy floors will also help reflect light. Try vinyl, light colored tile, or polished hardwood for a finished look.

Adapt an Open Floor Plan

Popular now in most homes is an open floor plan. Large amounts of doors make dark, small spaces. Remove the doors to bring large groups of family and friends together in one place.

“An open floor plan creates a bigger space, which looks brighter and more inviting to family and guests,” David said. “You’ll find yourself downstairs more often.”

Are you ready to expel the darkness from your basement? Call us at 262-402-6602 or complete our contact form to learn more about how we can remodel your basement to enhance your home’s functionality.