We did not have the basement finished when we built the house for a couple of reasons. One, cost. Two, we weren't really sure how we wanted the rooms laid out, and after spending so much time on the upstairs plans, we were a little burned out on floor plans. And three, Mark thought he would finish it himself, since he had finished the basement in his house in St. Louis. After we got into the house, I think we got a little impatient and were ready to have everything in the house completed. We spent some time thinking of how we wanted things laid out, which was complicated by the furnace being in the middle of the basement. Mark wanted a home office so he can telecommute a day a week, and I wanted a work out room/activity type of room. We also wanted to leave a good part of it unfinished for storage, laundry, all the utility stuff (water filtration, hot water heater, etc.). Once we determined how best to lay it out, Mark decided he really wanted the builder to finish it off, so that it was done in a more reasonable time frame. Since Mark qualified for the home buying tax credit, that money became the basement finishing fund. We had the builder come over and give us an estimate, which we both felt was very reasonable, and we had him get started, In less than three weeks we had a completed basement area! We still have to get the tile clean, seal the grout, and Mark is going to finish off the stairs with tongue and groove board.
Here's the finished basement! We will have plenty of room for everything we want to put down here, and Mark will have his "man cave" for work. We are very happy with the finished product!