ParentingConverting Your Unfinished Basement into a Child’s Playroom

Converting Your Unfinished Basement into a Child’s Playroom

From toys to books to games, making space for your child’s belongings can be a challenge. Where do you put everything when you don’t have a playroom? Where does it go after it doesn’t fit in your child’s bedroom? Where do you put it all so that it doesn’t look like it has been haphazardly thrown into a pile in the living room? An answer to these questions is simple: the basement.

Turn Your Basement into a Child’s Playroom

Often, basements are unfinished and are used for storage purposes. However, converting your basement into a makeshift playroom for your child could alleviate the stress of where to store your child’s toys in an organized manner; and more importantly, where your child can play in a safe and exciting environment.

Child’s Playroom

Here are some tips to renovate your unfinished basement into a child’s playroom:

Start From the Ground Up

When renovating any room, it’s important to start with the flooring and then move onto the paint, storage, furniture, and decorations. Determining the floor first will allow you to determine the style of the room first and foremost. Additionally, it’s important to install the flooring first before moving large pieces of furniture into a space that will be hard to remove.

For a basement playroom, there are a few recommended types of flooring:

  • Carpet tiles
  • Hardwood with rubber backing
  • Vinyl tile
  • Rubber tile

Each of these types of flooring allows for easy installation along with even easier cleanup for spills and crayon and marker mishaps, while also being fairly scratch resistant.

Make Sure The Basement is Properly Waterproofed

Properly waterproofing an unfinished basement can sometimes be an overlooked task. This step isn’t something people typically consider when converting a basement into a playroom. However, if a basement isn’t properly waterproofed, rain, melted snow, and any other outside moisture has the ability to seep through the ceiling and walls.

According to an expert from a basement waterproofing company in South Jersey, “If moisture makes its way into a basement, there becomes a risk of mold and damage to the walls, ceilings, and other items in the basement.”

The risk of mold is an important risk to watch out for when renovating a basement in order to make it into a playroom. Children are more at risk of the side effects of mold than adults. Keep your basement dry and your child healthy with proper basement waterproofing.

Determine Lighting

The first step when determining lighting is to decide where lighting fixtures will be placed based on where natural light is in the basement. Natural light will add to the overall lighting and make the basement a brighter and more welcoming place for your child.

After establishing where the natural light shines, put lighting fixtures in otherwise dark corners. Lighting fixtures can be floor lamps or lights hanging on the ceiling connected to extension cords.

The main thing to keep in mind when determining lighting is to make sure it’s safe; basements are known to have copious outlets and single light bulbs hanging from the ceiling. Make sure outlets are covered so your child doesn’t stick his or her fingers in them and make sure single light bulbs are either covered with a bigger light fixture or are high enough that a child can not reach it.

Maximize Storage

Perhaps, maximizing storage is the main reason you are converting your unfinished basement into a playroom. Children’s toys and other belongings take up a lot of space and can very easily look unorganized if not stored in the right way. When renovating your basement, make sure to plan storage space and measure the room to determine how much and what kind of storage will be appropriate.

Bookshelves, toy boxes, bins, and baskets are important storage elements for your new playroom. Pay special attention to what kind of storage your playroom needs; is your child and avid reader, or is he or she more into playing with blocks? Are there more dolls and action figures than there are stuffed animals? These are important questions because these will determine what kind of storage you will need to create an organized and attractive playroom.

Consider the Walls

Wall space, if manipulated in the right way, can add more design elements to your basement conversion. If your unfinished basement has the ability to have actual walls built, that is ideal in terms of safety. Exposed beams and cement can act as a safety hazard to small children. However, if the installation of walls is not an option, beams and cement walls can be manipulated to prevent any detrimental situations.

Beams should be sanded so that there aren’t rough edges that can stick or poke a child. Once sanded, beams can act as places to hang decorations, your child’s art, and shelves. Wooden beams can brighten up a room if decorated correctly.

Cement walls can also be manipulated with welcoming and colorful decorations. In order to keep children safe from injuries caused by hitting or falling onto the cement wall, place appropriate furniture and shelves in front of each wall. Placing a couch or bookshelf in front of the wall will cover it so that only the top of the wall is exposed.

If you have the option to paint walls in your new playroom, it’s important to keep in mind that the color sets the entire mood for the room. Try to stick to cool colors like light blue and light green or use neutral colors like tan and gray. Warm colors like red, orange, and yellow can create feelings of anxiety and overwhelmingness.

Shop Secondhand

Converting your basement doesn’t have to break the bank. It’s important to buy some things brand new for your basement renovation, but things like bookshelves and other shelving and storage systems can be bought secondhand or recycled from other areas of your house. Shopping on websites like Ebay, craigslist, and Facebook, can help you find second-hand item deals fast.

It’s more important to spend money to make your new playroom safe and organized than it is to have top-of-the-line furniture and other playroom accessories.

Creating a Safe and Fun Playroom

The main goal of converting your basement should be to provide a safe and exciting place for your child to play. Converting your basement doesn’t have to be done all at once, it can be a multiple-step process and can come together over time. Keep these tips in mind when you begin converting your basement, the memories made there will be worth it.

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