Things we don't like about the basement:
- The soffit shown above hangs down about 12 inches from the ceiling. Part of it is camouflaged by the hallway to the kids' bedrooms, and the rest "hangs" in space.
- The hallway is long, narrow and - a perfect throwback to the 1970's. The outer wall is also the central load-bearing wall for the floor joists above, so removing it out of the question.
- No storage - none, nil, kein, geen, arimasen ...
Here is the "after" plan, currently in process:
Changes that require major structual modification are expensive, so we devised a plan that is built around what is there.
Changes we are making:
- Adding a walk-in closet and a storage closet at the left end of the bonus room.
- Changing the access to the bedrooms and getting rid of the hallway
- Turning the hallway and much of the area under the soffit into storage. Some of the hallway will become one of the bedrom closets. This will allow us to use the existing closet in that room for expanding a cramped and akward bathroom (later phase of the remodel)
- "Hiding" the soffit, by putting walls in (shown in orange). This also make a landing area at the bottom of the stairs, creating a much better transition space into the basement.
- Adding a sewing closet for my DW. This will be a space where she can leave her machines set up and have the main stuff always available. It will hold a desk-top and have outlets.
- Adding built-in bookselves (7" x 8")
- Adding central vacuum plumbing and inlets
This requires that only two short headers be installed, plus a modest amount of framing.