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Don’t Make This Mistake When Renovating Your Basement

Unfinished basements are probably among the most exciting spaces to renovate in a home. Since they’re a blank canvas, it really allows you to personalize it from the studs up.

If you’re getting set to renovate your basement, chances are, you’re dreaming of a spacious family room, game room or crafting space, a bar or all out man cave (or ma’am cave). There’s even a chance that you may have an income suite in mind. However, as you plan the reconfiguration of the space with your contractor, don’t forget to leave room for storage.

Once upon a time storage was pretty much all basements were used for. They gave families a nice open space for off-season clothes, holiday decorations, and all of those little extras that we seem to accumulate over the years.

Now, that we seem to be acquiring more and more things, while basements are being turned into usable living spaces, it seems that many households are on a never-ending quest for more storage space. That’s why when taking on a basement renovation, it is always in your best interests to set aside some space for storage.

Storage Needs

The first step to creating the type and size of storage space that works best for your household is to asses exactly what you need to store.

Storage items can be divided into a few different categories

  • Pantry Items
  • Serve ware/Dishware
  • Off-season Clothing
  • Holiday Décor
  • Toys and Games
  • Sporting Gear
  • Sentimental Keepsakes
  • Hobby Items
  • Miscellaneous Items

Storage Styles

Big or small, any basement can make room for some storage space. Here are a few different storage styles to inspire you.

A Dedicated Storage Room


If your basement is large enough, the best option for storage is to dedicate an unfinished or finished portion of the space for storage purposes. Divide the space between pantry needs and general storage.

Pantry storage should have ample shelving for canned goods, boxed foods and other “stock up items”. You can also use this space to house occasionally used serving pieces like platters and chaffing dishes, as well as extra table linens and rarely used kitchen gadgets (think fondue pots and that air fryer you bought on impulse last year).

The majority of your storage room should be dedicated to general storage. The best thing you can do in this space is to hire a professional closet designer to help you give everything a logical space. This will keep your storage room from becoming a junk space that you’ll need to declutter every year.

Here you can create a few different storage zones. These zones can include:

  • A Rack and bin system for storing things in plastic totes
  • Hanging storage for off season clothing
  • Peg board storage for things like holiday wreathes and swags, gift wrapping supplies and tools.


The nice thing about built-ins is that they can be attractive enough to incorporate into the design of a finished basement. Storage cupboards and cubbies with doors can easily hide all of the off-season sporting gear, your Christmas tree, the ridiculous number of vases that you own for some reason (just us?) without detracting from the look of the space.


Under the Stairs

Source: Ideas2live4

If there’s no room for a dedicated storage room and you don’t want to steal footage from the main living space for a system of built-ins, you might want to try carving out some storage space under the stairs. This is a genius way to make use of what is typically unused. While you might not be able to stare a large amount, it will provide a nice nook for things like books, a few bins or boxes and extra toys.


Ready to get started? Explore the listings here on to connect with General Contractors, as well as Cabinetry and Millwork experts –many of whom have experience creating custom closets and storage space in homes just like yours.


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