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Basement apartment guide

Written by
Published on
September 20, 2017

Is your basement working for you?

If you have too much living space and too many passive income streams, this isn't the post for you. For everyone else, the pros have put together a list of things to look for in your future basement apartment. Read on to learn more!

We've discussed that finishing a basement is always a great idea in terms of boosting market value because it takes a previously unused area of the home and creates liveable space. There is some definite personal enjoyment you can get from a man cave or a craft area or a downstairs great room or a basement tavern or... If you really want to increase the overall marketability of your home – and make some income on the project in the meantime – basement apartment renovations for students / seniors in Ottawa are something to consider.

Benefits of Turning Your Basement Into an Apartment

Technically an underground room for a senior and young adult right?

Many homeowners / investors purchase multi-family homes as a way to have their mortgage paid for them while living in their own property anyway. It's a great idea, but one that is very permanent. Multi-family homes are essentially houses that are split into two. That's not saying that both units can't be nice, but there's just not a lot of options (outside of a full remodel) to turn the property back into a single home if you decided to one day.

Basement apartments create an income without really compromising the rest of the house. If you ever decide you don't want others living with you, now there's an ultimate man cave with a full bathroom and kitchen lurking below your home. Some of the incentives of basement apartment renovations for students and seniors in Ottawa include:

  • Create an income with space that was 'just there' anyway.
  • Best landlord investment because you're literally right upstairs to fix any issues.
  • On-site tenant that could also be responsible for lawn care / snow shoveling / babysitting.
  • A place for children in college to get an idea of living on their own while still being at home.
  • A safe area for seniors to move and maintain their pride and independence in safety and luxury.
  • A good way to combat 'empty nest' syndrome.

It's definitely a big choice to have another person or family move into your home which is why many of our customers in Ottawa do a basement apartment renovation with students, in-laws, or seniors in mind.

What Goes Into a Basement Apartment Renovation?


Nice bright underground living room

Having somebody simply move into the basement is a roommate – in order to create a full-fledged downstairs apartment there are numerous building codes and legal issues to abide by in addition to the actual renovating.

One of the main issues about having a student or senior live in the basement is safety. Walkout basements work best for apartments because they have a separate entrance but also a safe exit point. If there is no exterior door then you have to put an egress window in for safe exit.

You'll also want to address the moisture problems that are often present in a basement. Make sure there is proper ventilation. A basement apartment renovation for students and seniors in Ottawa needs its own plumbing, electrical, and heating/cooling. There should also be some sort of kitchenette area which includes a refrigerator and stove. You can get away without bedroom framing with a studio apartment design. If so, a separate closed-off bathroom (with shower) should be remodeled into the basement.

We can assist you with every aspect of turning your basement into a fully functional apartment that is ready to make money – or at least conveniently house students or seniors in your family. Give us a call today to talk to one of our design specialists. Whether you've got your dream space planned out, or you're looking for ideas, we can help.

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