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Suzanne Surette

by Suzanne Surette Renovation Advisor | Reno-Assistance

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Reno Blog / Basement / What does a Basement Renovation Cost? Toronto & Montreal

What does a Basement Renovation Cost? Toronto & Montreal

Basement Cost and Price

The typical cost of a basement renovation tends to range between $35-$40 per square foot but your expenditure can vary depending on your requirements. Learn about the different expenses that you will have to bear and how to cut down the cost where possible.

Looking for additional space in your home? Before you go scouting for a new house or make the decision to undergo a room addition/house extension project, you should take a look at the basement as a potential option. Many Canadians are choosing to renovate their basements in lieu of other more costly options while keeping the layout of their home intact and still considerably increasing its resale value.

Made a decision? Now let’s think ‘money’.

Now, the exact cost of a basement renovation project depends on your requirements. For example, if you choose to build a kitchen and bathroom in the basement you can expect the overall costs to rise significantly. Quotes will differ from contractor to contractor but so can the quality of their work and the services they provide. You shouldn’t wait until you receive quotations to start putting together a budget.

Depending on your location, here are the average prices you can expect to pay per square foot:

  Economy Mid-Range High-End
Greater Toronto Area $35 / sq ft $45 / sq ft $70 / sq ft
Greater Montreal $25 / sq ft $32 / sq ft $50 / sq ft

Would you like to know the cost of your basement renovation?

Cost of a Finished Basement – The Breakdown
In Toronto, the cost of finishing a basement is somewhere in the range of $35-$70. So, if the area of the basement is 1000 square feet, you will be paying at least $35,000. This will include labour costs, material costs as well as design fees. The bigger the basement area, however, the lower the rate per square foot you will likely be able to negotiate with the basement renovation contractor. To get an idea about the potential cost for your particular project, speak to an advisor for free on 1-888-670-672 or simply submit your project online.

The price can be considerably less if you decide on a more simple basement renovation that includes framing, flooring, crown moulding and painting and furniture but forgoes more complex plumbing and electrical work. A renovation of this calibre can run between $10,000 and $30,000.

A detailed cost estimate to help you make a better choice.

  • The basic finishing of the bathroom is generally included in the cost of the project. But, if you require a bathroom in the basement built from scratch, add $5,000 to the total cost of the basement renovation project.
  • A kitchen in the basement will be at least $10,000
  • Thinking of building a fireplace in your man-cave? It will be $5,000 minimum.
  • If you need to increase the size of the stairs leading down to the basement, allow for around $2,000 for new stairs to be constructed.

How to save on your basement renovation cost?

Requirements – present and future

If you are converting the basement into a rental property, it is best to have a separate entrance to the basement. It will give you and your tenants privacy from each other. In such a situation, you will need to spend money on a bathroom and kitchen as well, in order to create a self-contained apartment. On the other hand, if you are planning to use the basement primarily as an entertainment area, consider having the best contractor to take care of your project.

It’s best to accommodate your planned requirements for the basement for the next 10 years. It will help you to put money in the renovations which will provide the best return on investment for you.

Hire a reputable basement renovation contractor.

Acting as your own contractor will help you save money but if you do make mistakes with your work, you may end up having to redo work to correct them at your own expense. So, unless you have specific experience in basement renovation projects, it is often wise both fiscally and for quality to hire a reputable basement renovation contractor. Remember that jobs such as underpinning the basement and building a kitchen area require certain expertise. On the other hand, if you are looking simply to re-paint the walls, consider doing this part yourself to save on costs.

basement renovation contracting

Renovating the basement and giving it a fresh new look will effectively increase the living space in your home. It is a costly affair but if you make wise decisions, especially in the planning stages, the returns will be high.

Planning the best use for your basement renovation

When your family needs more space, the very best place to look at first is downstairs. Basement renovations are often the most cost-effective way to add more casual living area for your family because you can utilize the existing foundation and structure and the overall cost per square foot will be less than an addition. Plus, with the help of a professional contractor, you can transform even the dreariest basement space into something bright and beautiful.

Do you have a basement project?

Popular Basement Remodelling Plans

There are so many different ideas you can implement in making the best use of your basement space besides a rec room. How about a fitness room with some exercise equipment and free weights? Don’t forget to think about the flooring, especially if you will be doing aerobic exercise or using heavy weights or machines. Another common use is a home theatre room with a big screen TV or projector and surround sound.

Think about what your family enjoys doing and decide how to accommodate those activities in the newly remodelled basement space. If games like billiards and air hockey are family favourites then, by all means, set up a recreation room. This space should be built for casual living, which includes plenty of recreation.

basement rec room

Comfortable Furnishings

Consider including some features in your basement renovation that will add comfort. Things like a direct vent natural gas fireplace or a built-in bar are excellent additions to the basement that can be easily installed by your contractor.

When homeowners attempt to finish their own basement as a DIY project, they may be missing out on opportunities to include more complex elements. If you wouldn’t fee confident building your own home – from foundation to roofing and all of the finishing tasks inside – it may not be a good idea to attempt a DIY basement remodel. Even if you’re handy and capable, leaving it to a pro will provide you with so many more options when deciding what features you’d like to build or install.


Bedrooms and Bathrooms

The basement is a great place for a bedroom as long as the windows are large enough to use as a fire escape. This stipulation is written in the building code in most Canadian cities and is simply a good common sense safety guideline to adhere to. The natural light that a decently-sized window will provide is also bound to be appreciated, especially down on the basement level.

Bathrooms are almost a must in the basement, although you may need to have some plumbing cleverly installed. There are special toilets available that will pump the water up to the sewage drainpipe if necessary, although many newer homes have already been fitted with a plumbing system including a backwater valve in the basement. This setup makes bathroom installation a breeze downstairs and will also cut down on the overall cost of the renovation.

basement bedroom bathroom

Put in a shower if your family will make use of it, but a two-piece sink and toilet powder room may be sufficient depending on the frequency and nature of use of the basement.

However you design it, your basement renovation will add extra casual living space for minimal cost. With the help of a professional contractor, you can make the best use of the area and include all of the features your family needs, creating the most comfortable spot in the house.

Take away the headache of finding the right basement contractor!

Reno-Assistance has established a network of basement renovation specialists across Greater Toronto and Montreal with the experience and expertise to design and build your new basement to your exact requirements, on time and on budget. All of our contractors have had to pass our 360° Verification involving stringent checks of financial stability, past work history including references, supplier relationships, legal history, customer complaints or disputes, licences, insurance, etc. We will even provide you with a detailed verification report for each contractor we refer before you meet with them.

Your renovation advisor will learn the requirements for your project and guide you through all the necessary stages. They will also refer up to three local 360° Verified contractors who specialize in that particular work to provide competing quotes for the job.

There is no cost for our service and no obligation to choose one of the contractors we refer, so submit your project online or give us a call to start your project on the right foot.

Talk to a renovation advisor now!


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