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Unfinished basements are a great place to start. Finishing it could result in a 75% return on investment. Additions to usable space benefit you (or future buyers). Unexposed pipes and ducting are visible in unfinished areas. Installation of a drain and sump pump, framing, drywalling, windows, and wiring is part of the finishing phase.

Basement Finishing Cost Per Square Foot

The average cost to complete a basement is $15/sqft from $7 to $23 per square foot. The final cost depends on your contractor’s fee, the materials you choose, and your ambitions for the area.

Basement Cost Calculator (Square Feet)

Avg. Price
$6,000\s500 $7,500\s700 $10,500\s800
1,200 $18,000\s1,500

Construction Basement Finishing Cost

Basement remodeler costs up to $34,000. Labor accounts for 10% to 25% of project costs. Instead of charging by the hour, they incorporate their labor rate. Get at least three quotes from contractors and choose one who does quality work at a fair price.
Basement Finishing Costs
CompletionAverage Cost
Sump pump setup $575
Waterproofing $4,500
Framing $1,795
Insulation $1,650
Drywall $1,750\sPaint $1,800
Electrical $1,325\sOutlets
Lighting $2,880
Flooring $2,950\sPermit $1,160

Drywalling a Basement

How much does it cost to frame and drywall a basement? Drywall installation costs around $1,850, or $2 per square foot. Finishing 400 square feet of basement walls may cost $800, while 1,500 square feet may cost $3,000. Contractors include labor and drywall panels, which range from $12 to $20 each.

Basement Framing Cost

Basement framing costs around $1,800, without including insulation or drywall. Framing alone costs $7 to $16 per linear foot, but with drywall, it rises to $20 to $30. Using 3 12 inch batt and roll insulation adds $1,650.

Basement Finishing Cost Ceiling

Basement drywalling and a ceiling cost around $1,700. Many contractors include the cost of a basic drywall ceiling in the room framing and drywalling expenses.
Other designs may be required since pipes and ducting hang below the joists. This prevents a smooth ceiling, but you still have options:


Costs range from $100-$500 per day to hire a sprayer or a pro. Pipes and ducts are often concealed by painting them the same color as the ceiling.


Drop ceilings cover pipes, ductwork, and wiring for $2-$6 per square foot. Acrylic panels that appear like wood, stone, or other materials are the most popular.


Tongue and groove wood paneling is inexpensive and easy to install. Easy to trim around exposed ducts and more to give the space a modern vibe.

Basement Flooring Setup

Basement flooring costs between $1,500 and $4,500. You can expect to pay $3,000 for 500 sq. ft. Hardwood costs up to $22 per square foot, while laminate and carpet range from $3 to $11.

Home Tech

The home’s comfort systems are in the basement. Sinks, baths, and toilets connect to boilers or water heaters through the ceiling and walls. Also, sump pumps, furnaces, and HVAC systems. Moving these systems may not be feasible or cost-effective. A water heater in a closet is possible but verify local codes first. Large equipment like boilers and HVAC units are harder to conceal.


Leaky foundation basement waterproofing costs $4,450 on average. If a sump pump is required to prevent flooding, add $1,300. If there is any damage to the basement drainage system, expect to pay an additional $2,850.
These services are expensive but worth it. Basement water leaks can lead to major issues.

Building a Basement

Interior designers assist construct a functional basement living space for roughly $7,250. Depending on the project, they charge $5 to $15 per square foot or $50 to $200 per hour. A preliminary session to discuss your plans for the space can cost up to $500.
Contractors charge for basic design assistance. Hiring an interior designer costs more but helps organize the space’s flow and function.

Basement Finish Cost

Basement furniture costs at least $2,050 new. You can spend as much as you want because it all depends on how you use the area. The furniture’s quality is important.

Basement Furniture Prices

Avg. Cost
$1,300 Couch $800 Loveseat $500 Recliner $170 Side table $110 Bookcase
$300 TV stand
$650 foosball
$2,800 Pool table
$750 Stool

Cost to finish basement with bathroom

This varies depending on your home’s location, basement size, and extent of work. Most permits involve inspection fees. Permits are required for any work requiring electricity, plumbing, or finishing the basement. The plumbing must be up to code to provide appropriate drainage and effective waste flushing. Keep your electrical work up to code to avoid short-circuits, blown fuses, and fires.
Absent the required permits, you may be issued a stop-work order, halting your project. This usually doubles the fees after you apply for permissions. Your city may punish or require the removal of all unpermitted work. Insurers may deny claims if you cannot produce permissions. Unauthorized basement finishing might reduce a home’s resale value.

Finish Basement Bathroom

A finished basement with a bathroom costs roughly $49,000. The average cost to install a bathroom is $15,000 for a 30-50 square foot project. A 100 square foot luxury spa installation might cost $90,000.
Some basement bathroom fixtures, like a drain, are already roughed in. These charges are extra to finishing your basement. Self-installing a bathroom can save costs in half.
Knowing your needs can help you build the perfect bathroom. Unusual half-bath with no shower or tub. A bedroom or en suite downstairs needs a complete bathroom.
Do you have enough space to add a bathroom? A 40-square-foot bathroom with tub/shower. 12 baths need 30 square feet. A bathroom with a separate toilet may use up to 100 square feet.

Basement Apartment Conversion Cost

Basement conversion to a studio apartment with kitchenette, bathroom, and laundry costs on average $61,000. High-end appliances, cabinetry, and countertops, plus a separate entryway, might push the cost past $110,000.
The cost of framing and finishing a one-bedroom apartment is closer to $63,000. Custom stone worktops, hardwood floors, and other high-end materials can cost up to $122,500. Adding more egress windows may also increase the cost.
The kitchenette, on the other hand, averages $45,600. Existing wiring and plumbing could save you thousands.
In-unit laundry costs $1,000 to $6,750, or an average of $3,875. Most places already have washer/dryer hookups and the proper outlets. The cost may increase if you need to build a specialised machine room or add storage cabinets.


A kitchenette in your basement costs around $45,600. Cabinets range from $500 to $7,500 for five linear feet. Prices for 10 square feet of countertop range from $250 to $1,200. Installation costs range from $1,675 to $23,600. Costs for plumbing, wiring, and sink installation are also included.
Despite having many of the same amenities, the cost is less than a full kitchen extension due to the smaller size. A kitchenette is roughly 70 square feet and an extension is about 200.

Basement to Bedroom Conversion Cost

A bedroom in your basement costs around $22,200. To keep the area up to code, an egress window costs $3,900 on average. Then add drywall, flooring, and all the other elements you desire in a bedroom.

Rooms & Features

How you use the basement decides how to build it out. You can make it a:

  • Playroom/Rec.
  • A/V
  • Bars
  • Home/Workshop

Do you need a Wi-Fi router? For example, a wet bar requires water lines and a drain for the sink.

Basement Finishing System Price

This includes wall and ceiling panels, as well as a pleasant ground surface. Only insulated wall panels cost $4.75 per square foot. In most cases, these basement finishing kits may be installed on a weekend. The area still needs flooring, paint, and other finishing touches.
If you have time, a professional crew can frame and finish a basement in around 45 days. DIY often takes much longer.
“If you are transferring your home and have a mortgage on it, you must notify the bank that holds your note.”
expert in home building and sustainability, Cati O’Keefe

Cost of a Finished Basement

The average cost to finish a basement is $18,400, although the cost will vary depending on your area. A finished basement in a New York townhouse costs $60,000-$100,000. In Denver, Colorado, the identical project might cost $28,500 to $65,700. The price difference depends on material costs, living costs, and accessibility.

Building an Unfinished Basement

Construction of an unfinished basement foundation costs between $10,000 and $175,000. A finished basement with a foundation may cost between $30 and $100 per square foot.

Basement Remodeling vs. Finishing

The budget for a basement makeover is $21,200. The makeover normally occurs after an $18,400 basement finish and alters the layout dramatically. You can divide it into rooms or just install a wet bar to break it up. Costs climb dramatically with a kitchenette and laundry.

DIY vs. Contractor Basement Finishing

Basement finishing projects are complex and need several steps. So leave them to local general contractors or finish carpenters. Because labor expenses are so high, you may decide to finish a tiny basement yourself. Remember to hire an electrician and/or a plumber if you want to add any of those features. These fees are not included below.
Finishing a Basement: DIY vs. ProSize
DIY vs. Pro Price
700 sq. ft.
$5,500 $10,500 (1,000 square feet)
$8,000 $15,000
Large (1,001+ sq.ft.
$15,000 $21,355

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