Step 1

So, last week we had a few different contractors come to take a look at our basement (hence my lack of posting) and give us some estimates.  My poor husband just about had a nervous breakdown after it was all over.  It was amazing how contradictory they were. For example:

1. One told us we had a serious mold problem and needed to remediate IMMEDIATELY or we would all die vs. a little mold, not serious

2. $35k to finish the basement (waterproof, drywall, flooring, etc) entirely vs. $20k JUST to waterproof

3. Permits vs. no permits
*While we can do all the work without permits I'll sleep much better at night knowing everything was inspected and done to code, plus if we ever sell the house we won't run into any problems*

4. Yes we can make the structural changes we want vs. no it's not possible

It was quite frustrating not to know what was really true. It's a hard thing trusting people to come into your home and do serious work.  I did research ahead of time and found recommended contractors from the Better Business Bureau website, which is the best place to start if you have no idea where to start.  I read lots of customer reviews, and picked the top 3 companies.  We had them all come out last week, and while all seemed incredibly knowledgeable I'll tell you how we ended up deciding on a company...

Our gut feeling. Some of you may think this is strange, but that's really what it came down to. We narrowed it down to two.  The company we decided to go with left us with a really great impression.  Not only did they have excellent reviews, but they were very thorough with their estimate, and they were the ONLY company to invite us to visit current job sites that they are working on and to ones they have completed.  This was really a big plus. Clearly they are confident enough in their work that they WANT us to come and see it.  I didn't like the #2 company on our list. The person who did the estimate was super salesy which was annoying, and when he was explaining how we have water problems in our basement he talked to me like I was brainless.  Little did he know that my degree is in Biology and I took enough Ecology classes to teach him a thing our two about groundwater, run-off, and acidic soil.  I think as soon as I told him I stayed at home he labeled me as a sucker.  Too bad I graduated Summa Cum Laude from college and have a little thing called common sense.  He really tried to push us around and scare us into using his company which was a big turn off. Not to mention they called my husband the next day and harassed him which was a big no no.

Needless to say, we are really excited to get things moving, and should get started sometime in March. Craft room here I come!

I'd like to thank Judith for the links yesterday...I checked them out and drooled a lot.  I also checked out Bethany's site today and fell in love with her organization for her sewing nook.

 I think I'm going to start a dream board for my room. You know, cut out pictures, colors, inspiration to keep me on track and organize my thoughts.

Please feel free to share any other links, or pictures of your own crafting spaces!


  1. Loved that you made us feel apart of your episode of picking the right contractor..EEEK!! Scary to think that there are so many dodgy people out there...never fear I am a big believer in Karma..and that will happen to people that do wrong. Looking forward to the next step of your renos, hugs!

  2. Very exciting to think of what lies ahead and I'll look forward to future updates. Keep us posted :)

  3. You have to go with your gut :) My studio is in the basement and if I could add one thing to your wish list...lots of well placed overhead light! I just switched to daylight bulbs and it helps, but I only have 4 recessed lights and I wish I had 2-3 more. O.k. one more wish list item...lots of electrical outlets! That I have and I really use them so put in as many as you can :)


Back to Top