If you are planning to turn your leaky, damp Toronto basement into a new living area that all the family can use on a year-round basis, the first and most important thing you need to do is waterproof it. Failure to tackle this step first could result in a number of problems further down the line, the most serious of which are detailed below. In fact, even if you are not planning to remodel your basement in the near future, you should make sure that it is adequately waterproofed because some of the problems arising from leaky below-grade spaces could affect your entire property.
Basement Remodeling: Why Waterproofing Should Always Come First
Among the reasons that it is crucial to waterproof your basement before you begin remodeling work in earnest, the following are the most important to consider.
- Cost – While it is possible to carry out waterproofing after finishing your basement, doing so will cost much more than if you were to have the work done beforehand. For this reason alone, it is a good idea to make sure that moisture will not be a problem before you decorate below-grade spaces.
- Convenience – Once you have finished your basement remodeling project you will want to start using it straight away. However, if you neglect to waterproof it first, this will not be possible. The space will simply not be usable while remedial waterproofing is being performed and carrying out the waterproofing after the remodeling work has been finished will result in damage to the walls and floor that needs to be repaired before it is fit for occupation.
- Flood Damage – A below-grade space that is not properly waterproofed will be susceptible to flooding, especially during the rainy spring and autumn seasons we experience here in Toronto. While repairing such damage can be an expensive undertaking even in an unfinished basement, the costs can be astronomical when a flood occurs in a remodeled below-grade space. Making sure that flooding will not be a problem before you start remodeling work is therefore the only sensible option.
- Health – A damp basement provides a great environment for mould to flourish, which can be detrimental to the health of anybody who uses the space on a regular basis. This is especially so for those who suffer from respiratory conditions such as asthma so you should definitely waterproof as the first step of your basement remodeling project if you want to avoid health problems in the future.
- Structural Integrity – Flooding of below-grade spaces in residential properties can cause significant damage to the foundations, which in turn can compromise the structural integrity of the buildings in question. Remedial repairs to foundations can be even more expensive and disruptive than flood damage repairs, which is why all reputable construction firms recommend waterproofing right at the very beginning of any basement remodeling project.
- Property Value – While a well-executed remodeling project could add considerable value to your home, a below-grade living area that is plagued with damp issues is likely to have the opposite effect. All the money that you put into your basement remodeling could go to waste if you do not waterproof the space properly before you get started on the interior décor.
If you live in the GTA and you are currently thinking about remodeling/finishing your basement, please do not hesitate to get in touch with us to ask for advice or to request a competitive quotation. We have completed many such projects in the past and would be delighted to help you put your below-grade space to good use in the future.