How much will a basement suite add to the resale of my home?

basement suite

Basements have plenty of creative and financial potential for homeowners. Today, we’ll be showing you how a basement suite will boost your home’s value and market attractiveness.

Many homeowners with unfinished basements tend to ponder what they should do with that extra space. “Should it be used as storage? Should I let it be? Should I turn it into something useful?”

The possibilities are in your hands, but creating a basement suite would be a great choice. Not only does it add another livable space to the home, but it can also add to the resale value of your home if you ever decide to sell it. 

How Adding a Basement Suite Increases Your Home’s Sellability

One of the top things people search for in a home is the space and its potential. A spacious layout with good square footage is a big-ticket selling point for home sellers. 

Typically, potential buyers like seeing unused space because it gives them ideas of what to do with the space or how to expand upon it. But not everyone is decisive or wants to do a project with an unfinished basement. 

By adding a basement suite, you give potential homebuyers (and yourself) the option to maximize the living space. They’ll be drawn to the bonus square footage of the home; just the fact that there is an extra living space means potential buyers can do plenty to that space to make it homey or rentable. 

Potential buyers with bigger families will want to place a bid, too. Not because of the income potential but because of the space for multi-generational housing. In the United States, multi-generational living has been on the rise for the last few decades

Having that basement suite means that potential buyers can plan for a lifestyle involving their elder relatives yet keep their privacy at the same time. 

Overall Costs

Before making this addition to your home, you need to have a solid plan. That includes thinking through important variables like:

  • Necessary and unnecessary costs
  • Space usage
  • Features that can, should, can’t, and shouldn’t be added

Make sure you set your budget in advance so you don’t overspend or spend on things that end up not being needed. Let’s cover some of the costs of adding a basement suite.

General Cost Estimates

The cost of adding a basement suite will mainly depend on how much square footage there is to work with. The estimates can widely vary; HGTV reports costs being as low as $3,000 and as high as $200,000. 

However, according to Home Advisor, you can plan to spend anywhere between $30 to $75 per square foot. Expect this range to be higher if you have more expensive taste. The three major costs to budget for are materials, labor, and the paperwork for permits or inspections. 

unfinished basement suite

Tips to Save on Costs

As pricey as this project sounds, there are still things large and small that you can do to help you make the most out of your budget. 


One of the best ways to save costs on the material is to research when to buy it. Some times of the year are better than others to buy materials. Fall and winter are the better seasons to get materials because not many people like to do remodeling projects in these months. 

The fewer projects being done means the better chance of finding a good deal on materials. Consider buying in bulk too for even more savings. 

Another way to save is to think about the quality of the material. Sure, the cheapest option may look great for the budget but how will it hold up in the long run? You don’t want to use weak material that could quickly wear out because then you’d have to buy replacement material sooner than you’d like. 

Alternatively, you don’t want to buy the most expensive material either. Pricey doesn’t necessarily equal superior quality. 

Find that happy medium by researching strong material that’s also pretty sturdy.


Before beginning the work, you need to do your due diligence in looking for a good home addition contractor. 

Read: What to look for in a home addition contractor in Columbus, Ohio

The important traits you want to look for in a contractor are their:

  • Communication: are they transparent about their plans, suggestions, and their previous work?
  • Recommendations: do a personal background check to see how legitimate their work is and what kind of impression they left on previous clients.
  • Valid credentials: you don’t want to work with someone who’s not certified to do home modeling in your region.

If everything checks out, you’d be working with a contractor who will make the most of your budget. That means they’ll offer their opinions on the best materials to use that won’t empty your bank account. 

While anything can happen at any time, they’ll also follow a construction schedule and keep you in the loop when the unexpected occurs in the middle of the project.


Remodeling your basement to add a suite will require permits and inspections. This project will need to meet your city’s building codes. Failure to have the necessary paperwork will result in hefty fines.

Plus, it’ll pose a risk to potential buyers that you have a finished basement but don’t have the proper documentation showing that it meets city code.

Features to Consider

What people might need in a basement suite vary from family to family. Some might just need the basement set up kind of like a studio apartment. Others may need a space with a kitchen, bathroom, and a private entry/exit. 

While you can’t get the perfect suite for the potential home buyer, you’ll want to make the space independent from the rest of the home to the best of your ability. Check out how we did just that with this mother-in-law suite:

Read: This mother-in-law suite in Pickerington, Ohio keeps a family together

The focus of this suite was self-sufficiency. We added a kitchenette, a private entry, and a patio area with good natural light, and ensured that the suite featured a universal design.

Read: Why Universal Design is the future of home building

Features that give the basement suite some independence will help in making the home more attractive to buyers, especially multigenerational families. But even buyers who don’t have large families will still be attracted to the finished basement. We’ll share some of the other ways later.

Could Adding a Basement Suite Reduce the Resale Value?

According to a report done in 2022 by the National Association of Realtors, there has been a 17% increase in demand for finished basements. And a finished basement led to roughly 86% cost recovery. 

That statistic sounds like adding a basement suite would only recuperate some of your costs. But you have to remember that many factors go into this. Based on these statistics, if you were to upgrade the insulation so that the suite is energy efficient, that will help raise the return on investment. 

Aside from complimentary remodeling projects, the size and location of the home could make a big difference as well. How small, large, and populated the city you’re selling is could help bring in a higher return on investment.

Other Ways It Adds Value to Your Home

Additionally, you can get value from the basement suite long before you sell the home. In the meantime, you can use that space as a rental. That rent money will help offset the remodeling costs so that when you sell it, you have an even higher return on investment.

Otherwise, you can use that space for family and friends who want to stick around for a little while. Or if it’s the holidays and your moved-out children want to stay over, this will make for a nice, comfortable space for them. 

Whether you sell the home sooner or later, the fact that the homeowner could let an aging relative move in adds value in terms of loved ones being under one roof; money can’t top that value.

Let Our Experts Build Your Dream Basement Suite

Our team has the skill, experience, and highly positive results you can trust to add a basement suite to your home. You’ll see the value in no time, no matter how far or soon in the future you’d want to sell the home.

Heitmeyer Building & Design is a Construction company with over 100 years of experience in commercial construction and residential construction located in Pickerington, Ohio. 

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© 2021 Heitmeyer Building & Design, All Rights Reserved.

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