Many homeowners neglect to remodel their basement due to low ceiling height. The time, labor, and money involved to bring the basement up to your design standards may seem like a waste if you never want to spend time in it. Here are a few ways to improve your low ceiling basement.
The drywall over plumbing eats up a lot of your ceiling height. Expose ceiling joists and plumbing for a modern, industrial look that also creates more space. If you dislike being able to see everything in the ceiling, paint everything one solid color. While it does not actually hide everything, it makes it much less noticeable. You can run track lights between joists to achieve the lighting you need as well.
Open it up
Tight spaces are a surefire way to make your low ceiling basement feel smaller than it is, and cramped quarters only exacerbate low ceilings. Creating visual space helps alleviate this problem. Remove walls to create an open floor plan. This extra horizontal space will minimize the effect of low ceiling heights.
Another way to visually trick the eye is to place an oversize mirror just below the edge of the ceiling. This bounces more light to make the room feel bigger and brighter. It also distracts from the ceiling line, so the eye is not immediately drawn to it.
You can also paint the walls a bright color to create the illusion of a higher ceiling. Light colors make the basement feel bigger whereas dark colors have the opposite unwanted effect of visually shrinking your space.
Rework the Space
A low ceiling basement is often the direct result of ductwork. Relocate ductwork to the outer walls so it does not impede the main floor space. By removing awkward ductwork passages, you create more livable space. This helps define your living space as well.
Another way to create more ceiling height is to put in a tray ceiling in the center of the room. This makes the focal point the tallest point in the room as well. This will give the room more dimension and visual interest too.
Dig out the Floor
The most drastic and expensive approach to dealing with a low ceiling basement it to dig out your basement. If your budget allows, you can dig down into the basement floor to physically build more height rather than trying to create the illusion of more height.
There are small-scale and large-scale methods to improving your basement’s ceiling height. How you decide to handle it will depend a good deal on your budget. If you have a small budget, your best bet would be to paint and use décor pieces like mirrors to visually fool the eye. Mid-size budgets can go bigger by taking out ceiling drywall as well as removing dividing walls to create more room. Large budgets can go so far as to dig deeper into the floor to give you the high basement ceiling you desire.