Should I Put a Bathroom in My Finished Basement?

Should I Put a Bathroom in My Finished Basement?

The average cost to finish a basement runs $18,400, which isn’t a small investment. However, this home improvement project offers a significant return on your investment, and most homeowners find it’s more than worth it. 

While planning a finished basement, you’ve likely wondered if you should add a bathroom. An extra bathroom can boost your home value. Before taking the leap and calling a plumber, what do you need to consider?  You’ll have to think about ventilation, drainage, and other aspects of below-ground plumbing. Keep reading and consider all these factors to make the most of your basement remodel.

A Basement Bathroom Is Convenient

Adding a bathroom to your finished basement is undoubtedly convenient. If you plan to entertain family and friends in your newly finished basement, it’s always helpful to have a bathroom close by. You don’t have to worry about guests wandering your home to find the bathroom upstairs. 

Having an extra bathroom in the house is also nice if you have a big family. That way, everyone can get ready for work or school simultaneously without the dreaded queue. 

If you plan to have guests stay at your home, you might have them sleep in your finished basement. Guests will likely feel more comfortable if they have their own bathroom rather than having to go upstairs and share. 

It Boosts Your Home Value

Did you know that a midrange bathroom addition has a return on investment (ROI) of 54%? Although the average cost is about $49,500 here in the United States, you can recoup more than half of that ($26,730) if you decide to sell in the future. 

As far as home improvement projects go, that’s a pretty good return. 

Most experts agree it’s wiser to add to your home rather than convert a room. Taking away valuable living space can make some homes seem cramped. 

However, finished basements are often “bonus” spaces, separate from the home’s main living areas. Adding a bathroom downstairs will only benefit you in the long run, boosting the value of your property. 

Buyers will appreciate the extra bathroom. If you’re worried about removing dedicated space in your home, consider combining the laundry room and bathroom. This is pretty common in many homes. 

The Costs of Adding a Bathroom 

The big question you’re probably asking yourself is, “how much will it cost to add a bathroom to the basement?”

This isn’t a DIY job, and you shouldn’t try to cut costs by attempting it yourself. You’ll need a professional plumber to install the new systems. 

Prices will vary depending on location, ventilation options, the size of the bathroom, and more. You also need to consider zoning ordinances and deed restrictions. 

If you’re interested in a ballpark estimate, it’ll likely cost you between $10,000 and $15,000. This number goes up if you plan upgrades or a more upscale bathroom. 

Ways to Save on a Basement Bathroom

If you have a Pittsburgh toilet (a toilet in the middle of the basement with no walls around it), you may have wondered about its mysterious and seemingly random purpose. 

These toilets were standard in Pittsburgh homes before the Second World War but can be found all over the United States. 

Some claim these basement toilets were installed for mill workers and miners to use before heading upstairs. Other people state Pittsburgh potties were used to keep sewage overflow contained to the basement, back when backups were more common. 

If you have one at home, you can turn that strange floating toilet into a usable bathroom. The good news is someone already installed the toilet and drain pipe, so you can quickly turn that space into a functional bathroom with a little more work, potentially saving on some labor costs. 

Another way to save on your remodel is to place the new bathroom plumbing below the upstairs bathroom. This helps to simplify the plumbing. 

You’ll also need to talk to your plumber about waste disposal. If the sewer line isn’t deep enough, you may need a sewage ejector system, a pressure-assisted toilet, or an up-flushing toilet.  

Half Bathroom vs. Full Bathroom

The size of your bathroom and the number of fixtures you want will affect the cost of your addition.

Often, homes only have half bathrooms in the basement as it often gets too chilly to take a shower or bath in the basement, at least in the winter months. 

Of course, this all depends on your home and your preferences. A half bath is a good compromise if you don’t want to use too much space in the basement. It’s also cheaper to install, as you don’t have to add plumbing for the shower or tub.

Half baths don’t require as much maintenance either. If you only use the basement occasionally, it can be easier to keep the area clean. 

On the other hand, a full bathroom is excellent if you plan on turning your finished basement into a guest area. Guests won’t have to share the upstairs bathroom with you, giving you both some privacy. 

Keep ventilation in mind if you plan on adding a full bathroom downstairs. Basements have a lot of moisture, and they can get humid. You don’t want to deal with mold and mildew, so you’ll want an adequate ventilation fan. 

Should You Add a Bathroom to a Finished Basement? 

A finished basement provides bonus living space and opens up a world of possibilities. Adding a bathroom to your basement will only increase your home’s value, making the space much more useable. 

You’ll have to consider your budget and whether you want a half bath or a full bath. There are also design considerations and possible zoning and deed restrictions. Make sure you understand the costs and possibilities before starting this project. 

When you’re ready to call a plumber in the metro-Atlanta area, you can leave it to us at Millwood Plumbing. Contact us, and we’ll happily give you a quote on your new bathroom. 

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