Master bedroom in basement

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Jackie Azbill

Fayetteville, Ny

Dec 04 '12, 11:06 AM

We have a good size (2800 sq ft) cape cod with 2 bedrooms upstairs and 2 downstairs. Bathrooms on each floor but no master suite. Have finished 1150 sq ft basement that has a fireplace in sitting area and we are adding a bathroom. Thoughts on master in basement. Not great natural light but great lighting. Fire exit out through door to garage. Would love to reconfigure and use as master. Our kids are 7/6 and they actually enjoy sleeping downstairs right now. Very cozy...

Edited Dec 4 2012, 11:16 by Jackie Azbill

Jon Holdman Moderator

SFR Investor from Wheat Ridge, Colorado

Dec 04 '12, 11:11 AM

We had this in our house for some years. Two bedrooms upstairs which were the kids. We finished a large area in the basement, including putting in three large egress windows, and made it our master. Eventually we swapped with my son and moved upstairs to keep closer watch on our daughter's activities. They're both grown now, and my wife uses this as her studio. But it remains the largest, and in some ways, best bedroom in the house. The downside it that its downstairs. As we get older, its clear those stairs are eventually going to be a real problem.

The biggest downside was footsteps. So, you want to insulate thoroughly between this and the rooms above. And do something to decouple the ceiling material from the floor joists. Or carpet the rooms above this one.

Jon Holdman, Flying Phoenix LLC

Jackie Azbill

Fayetteville, Ny

Dec 04 '12, 11:16 AM

Thanks, Jon! Did you and your wife add a bath? I just have been reading such mixed reviews of doing this. I am under the mindset that an extra bath and finished area can't harm. If and when we would sell. People could decide to use as they would wish. We are a relocated family with lots of visitors. It would be wonderful for all of us not to share bathrooms.

Tom C.

Accountant from Kingwood, Texas

Dec 04 '12, 11:26 AM

Jon, you should stay young forever... That's what I plan to do!

Jon Holdman Moderator

SFR Investor from Wheat Ridge, Colorado

Dec 04 '12, 11:38 AM

@Jackie Azbill the space we finished already had a three quarter bath. We didn't change that. Adding a bath in a basement can be problematic, if the drains aren't below the floor of the basement. Not impossible, but more expensive. If the drains are low enough, don't hesitate to start cutting concrete. Its not that big of a deal and will give you great flexibility. I wish I had done this. At the time I thought this wasn't possible. Now I know better.

Unfortunately, @Tom C. the events of this year have made it abundantly clear staying young isn't an option. I'm of the opinion that houses are nothing but expensive doo-dads, like boats and cars. Making a master in the basement worked for us at the time. And we still get good use of that space. I could care less about resale value as I have no intention of selling this house. That's the kid's problem.

Jon Holdman, Flying Phoenix LLC

Jackie Azbill

Fayetteville, Ny

Dec 04 '12, 01:03 PM

Jon, we are no strangers to concrete cutting. We have done it before. I guess my only hesitation is most of what I read was negative about doing master in basement. Not opposed to calling it in law suite if we would sell... Semantics.

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