Fantastic Basement Conversion Ideas Empty-Nesters Will Love

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Once you have an empty nest, it’s the perfect time to remodel. Whether you’re keeping the home in which you raised your family, or you’ve downsized to something smaller, try these basement conversion ideas to create the living space of your dreams.

Basement Conversion Ideas: Home Movie Theatre
A renovated basement can better match your new empty-nesting lifestyle.

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CONTENTS: In this article, you will discover some great ideas for remodeling your basement now that you’re an empty-nester. These basement conversion ideas include:


Kids often commandeer the basement. They might use it as a playroom, brimming over with colorful kid furniture and toys. Or, as teenagers, they use it as a recreation space to hang out with their friends. 

If the kids don’t rule the basement, perhaps it’s the catch-all space for the family’s laundry and overflow.

Either way, it’s unusual to find a family who doesn’t use the basement for something, even if it’s just to store a few seasonal items and your home’s industrial infrastructure.

But now that you’re stepping into your new role as an empty-nester, you have a new opportunity.

While you may reclaim your child’s bedroom as an office or a guest room, the basement provides a much larger space at your disposal.

You can turn this potentially overlooked space into something infinitely more useful and personal. In fact, it can be just about anything you like, limited only by your imagination (and the basement conversion cost, of course).

Sorting through a lifetime of possessions in the basement might take some time–and take heed: it may be bittersweet at times.

But if you look forward to the basement conversion ideas you envision, you’ll find the inspiration and motivation you need to fully utilize this space.

5 Great Basement Conversion Ideas

Here are a few of my favorite basement conversion ideas to get you thinking creatively. They are perfect for empty-nesters or anyone who wants to revitalize their basement.

1. Create A Boozy Basement

Basement Conversion Ideas: Wine Cellar
You could turn your basement into a wine cellar.

Are you a fan of beer or wine?

If you’ve always wanted to have a decent wine collection, turning your basement into a wine cellar could be a pretty easy place to start.

You could do it with minimal work, like a walk-in wine closet for your prized Cabernet Sauvignon collection. (That one tops the list of the small basement design ideas.)

Or, you could create something a little fancier if it’s sophistication you seek.

If you’ve been thinking about making your own wine or beer, your basement could become the perfect craft area for your experimentation. You’ll need plenty of space for the right equipment, and somewhere you can make a little mess. Your basement could work out perfectly for this.

You might look at basement corner bar ideas or a mini bar. Or, you might go as far as installing a full bar and showcasing a gleaming display of tasty spirits and barware.

Bring in some high tables and chairs, a dartboard, and a pool table, and you might have one of the best basement sports bar ideas without ever leaving home.

2. Set Up A Hobby Room in Your Basement

Hobby or Music Room with drum set, vinyl records as one of several basement conversion ideas.
Face it: a dedicated space for your hobby is long overdue.

When you have a hobby of any kind, it can require a lot of space. If you haven’t had the luxury of a dedicated space for it at home, chances are, all of your stuff ends up spread out around the house or jammed into a closet.

Well, it’s time those days are over.

You can easily outfit your basement as a hobby room. Whether you turn it into a workshop, a sewing room, or somewhere to set up your model trains, the basement offers new possibilities–and newfound organization.

Better still, if you’re a music lover. Your renovated basement can be a great place to set up the old vinyl LP collection and chill in comfort to some old tunes. Or maybe you’ll be practicing your musical instrument in this space. Heck, with some planning, you can finally have the gang over for band practice. (Man cave, anyone?)

Whatever your hobby, if you’re going to turn your basement into a hobby room, make sure you have a good sump pump, such as a Tsurumi LB-480. You’ll want to ensure your basement is in the right condition to use it as a living space, especially when there’s electrical equipment involved.

You might also want to invest in better insulation, drainage, heating, lights–and if warranted, some soundproofing. 😉

3. Design A Home Theatre

Home movie theatre in the basement with two lounge chairs, a side table, large screen, and a sound system
“Movie Night” never goes out of style. And now it’s right downstairs!

Light’s, camera, action!

It used to be when the kids were little, you’d get a babysitter and have romantic date night. That might include dinner and a movie.

Well, now that the kids are grown (and you probably turn in a lot earlier), why not bring the movies to you?

You can relax and have date night any time you want when you have a home movie theatre in the basement.

Basement conversion costs for a home theater range from an inexpensive, basic setup to big bucks. Your best investment is a good sound system and a big screen, when it comes to basement media room ideas.

When you design your own home theater, you’ll want to skip those uncomfortable folding movie chairs. For the most comfortable experience, do this: pick something lounge-worthy, like a luxury cinema seat where you get cozy with a blanket, instead.

If you’re short on windows, this basement conversion idea is perfectly suited for movies at any time of day. Just pop up a big bucket of buttery popcorn and viola!

It’s movie time!

4. Make a Personal Sanctuary

Basement Conversion Ideas: home library or private sanctuary
Create a space that’s just for you.

It’s okay to want a little space away from your significant other sometimes. After all, you never spent so much time together! A finished basement can afford extra space for some much-needed “me” time.

Or, perhaps you want a less formal space so that you can save your living room for guests. Your basement can also become a great place to relax in comfort.

One idea is to gather all your favorite books and magazines among shelves and turn this space into something like a library. For the full effect, be sure to bring in a big comfy reading chair, footstool, task lighting, and some art, too.

You could even bring in a gentle fountain or salt lamp, and some soft music to enhance the peaceful vibe.

This might be one of the easiest basement DIY ideas. The trick is to create the sort of space you would like to use when you want to unwind.

In this way, your basement could become your private sanctuary. You might even be tempted to meditate or do yoga here!

5. Create A Living Space for Guests

Basement Conversion Ideas: airbnb or guest apartment
Your basement remodel might provide a welcoming space for guests.

You could also turn your basement into a welcoming guest space.

Sure, you might carve out a spare bedroom from the floor plan, especially if you’re thinking of small basement renovation ideas. But you could think bigger and turn it into a guest annex or apartment. In addition to having a sleeping space, you could add a bathroom and even a small kitchen.

When you have guests, this basement remodel would provide them with their own dedicated space. That makes everyone happier. It’s an ideal option for when your guests stay for longer, for instance if your children visit from out of state. Or, maybe you might need an extra living space for elderly parents at some point.

Either way, if you think big, you’ll have plenty of room to accommodate them. This is one of the basement makeover ideas that everyone will thank you for.

And if you are lucky enough to have a walkout basement, you might even be able to rent out the space to a local college student or as an Airbnb. Put that real estate to work for you if you’re not using it. I mean, who doesn’t love passive income, as far as basement reno ideas go?

Final Thoughts on Basement Conversion Ideas

At this unique stage in life, it’s all about reinventing yourself. For basement refinishing ideas, the same. You can turn your basement into anything that you want, with a nod to the cost of a basement conversion.

Whether it’s a glorified storage space for your wine or practically another residence, now is a great time in your life to make the most of what you have.

How do you plan to renovate your basement or garage space, now that you’re empty-nesting? Did any of these suggestions spark your interest? Have you seen any other good ideas worth sharing? Let us know in the comments below!

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Photo credits: Adam Winger on Unsplash, Pixabay – CC0 License, Loutpany via