St. Louis Refinished Basement Design Options

Check out this video from our YouTube page. With Marvelous Basements you have an endless amount of St. Louis refinished basement design options.

While your there, check out some of our other videos. Our YouTube channel is another great source for basement remodeling tips and tricks.

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The 16 Most Common DIY Basement Finishing Mistakes

We work on a ton of projects originally started by DIY homeowners. Even though each project is unique unto itself, there are still a list of common mistakes we see in these basement remodeling projects on a regular basis.

Recently we completed our video series on The 16 Most Common DIY Basement Finishing Mistakes. Check out Parts 1-4 of the series below.

The 16 Most Common DIY Basement Finishing Mistakes: Part 1

Mistakes: #1-4

The 16 Most Common DIY Basement Finishing Mistakes: Part 2

Mistakes: #5-8

The 16 Most Common DIY Basement Finishing Mistakes: Part 3

Mistakes: #9-12

The 16 Most Common DIY Basement Finishing Mistakes: Part 4

Mistakes: #13-16


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Remedies for a Leaky Basement

Basements leak. It happens.

Over time, your basement may throw a few curve balls your way that require you to hire a professional, or at least do a little home maintenance yourself, to solve some of the problems that can arise.

There are a number of reasons that your basement could be leaking and ironically enough, some of them have nothing to do with your actual basement. Let’s take a look at some of the reasons your basement could be leaking and the possible remedies for each.

Cracks in your basement foundation wall

Every basement foundation eventually gets cracks but some are way more severe than others. It’s going to be pretty obvious to you if a crack in your foundation is the cause of your leaky basement. You see the crack, you see water leaking out of it. Not the greatest detective work ever done.

The issue is whether the crack is severe enough that you need to call a professional or not. If the crack is severe do not wait to call for help. Letting the problem go on will only compound the headaches it creates. It will cost you more money in the end as well. However, if the crack is not severe you may be able to patch yourself using hydraulic cement, which is a concrete that sets very fast and will actually expand inside the crack you are trying to seal.

Clogged gutters

Many times, especially during the fall, gutters will clog up, causing water to unnaturally flow over the side of the gutter and pool against your home’s foundation. This over-pooling of water can be absorbed by your foundation and then in turn cause your basement to leak.

Make sure you keep your gutters clean on a regular basis or invest in some good gutter guard to prevent your basement from leaking.

Lack of positive drainage away from your house

When water runs over the sides of your gutter and splashes next to your house, it can wear away the ground next to your foundation. After time that area will cease to be able to channel water away from your foundation.

There can be many other causes besides a clogged gutter that can cause the ground around your foundation to wear down. The important thing to remember is that whenever this happens, new dirt should be put down to create a drainage path for any rainfall that lands next to your house.

If a leaky basement has ruined your finished basement then call Marvelous Basements. Our team of experts can not only help get those leaks fixed but can restore your basement to it’s original form.

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How to Prevent Mold in Your Finished Basement

Mold. It’s the word that no homeowner wants to hear. Once it takes hold, mold can spread all over your finished basement without warning.

Mold does not just grow on the surface of walls. Mold can run deep within the wall systems that enclose your finished basement, which is why it is imperative you take the proper precautions against mold, from the time you start remodeling your basement to years after the project is complete.

There are several key ways that you can keep mold from growing in your basement and we are going to look at some of these preventative measures.

1. Sealing your basement from the elements                     

The harsher the weather is, the more of a chance the elements can break down your home’s protective barriers, allowing mold to form in your basement. Before any aspect of your basement remodeling project takes place you need to make sure that your basement is properly sealed off. Areas like doors and windows need to be properly installed, then sealed and caulked to make sure no moisture from the outside can creep into your house.

2. Eliminate any mold on foundation walls before the frame-up stage

Unfinished basements are cold, damp dungeons that create a perfect environment for growing mold. If you have any mold on your basement foundation walls then you need to get rid of it before the basement remodeling process starts.

Wiping down mold infested areas with bleach is a great way to kill mold spores. After you get rid of as much mold as possible with bleach, it is then a good idea to paint over the area with a mold resistant primer.

3. Use quality mold preventative materials

The materials produced today are much better at fighting mold and mildew than 30 years ago. We always use Gold Bond XP drywall on all exterior walls in bathrooms and wet bars. Gold Bond XP provides a safe, mold free environment because of its special, non-toxic, Greenguard and Sporeguard certified chemical content. Gold Bond XP drywall is conditionally warranted not to grow mold or mildew for 25 years. We recommend you use a mold-fighting drywall in any area of your basement that is subject to moisture.

Mold can be a serious problem so making sure you prevent it at every stage of your basement remodeling project is imperative. If you need help replacing areas of your finished basement that have been damaged by mold then call Marvelous Basements today and let the experts show you how St. Louis basement remodeling is done.

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Archways and Raised Ceilings – Features To Put Your Basement Design Over the Top

At Marvelous Basements we pride ourselves on providing our customers with the most unique basement designs. We never use cookie-cutter designs for our client’s remodeled basements. Each basement is designed to fit the customer’s home and even their personality.

There are many ways that we achieve this uniqueness. Some of the ways that we can put your basement design over the top is by adding design features like archways or raised ceilings.

These types of features are usually not at the forefront of clients’ minds when we begin the design process. Most clients are focused on things like wet bars or home theater systems. Both of those are certainly important to a quality basement design but adding something like an archway or a raised ceiling is a great way to enhance the features of a basement.

Archways are a good way to highlight a specific area in your basement. There is nothing like having guests pass under an archway if you want people to really notice a certain section of your basement design.

The same can be said about a raised ceiling. A raised ceiling is another great way to frame in a key feature in your basement. Having a raised ceiling in an area that gets a high amount of traffic, like a home theater or billiards area, can make the area seem more spacious and open.

It doesn’t stop with archways or raised ceilings though. There are many other features that Marvelous Basements can implement into your basement design to make it unique for you and your home. Stop by our portfolio area on our site to see some examples of added features we could design for your basement. From built-in shelves to glass-block walls, Marvelous Basements can do it all.

Give us a call today to see how Marvelous Basements can design the perfect basement oasis for your home.

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How to Protect Yourself Against Shady Contractors

You have heard the story a thousand times. You know it all too well. A friend, a neighbor, maybe even a family member wants to get a portion of their house remodeled. They do a little searching, talk to a contractor or two, and decide to give the job to the winning contractor because they “seemed nice.” So they give the contractor a sizeable advance and wait for the masterpiece to unfold.

Then the story starts to take a turn for the worse. The contractor is late to appointments with the homeowner, doesn’t show up for days at a time, and never responds to their phone calls. Eventually he disappears from the job altogether, never completing the job, never refunding any of the money.

The frequency of which these tales occur is what is maybe most disturbing about the scenario. It also makes it tougher for the “real” professional contractors to do work.

So what is the lesson here? What can be done to make sure the story above doesn’t happen to you?

There are a number of things you can do to protect yourself but none may be bigger than getting referrals from the contractors that you are interviewing. Don’t just get one or two referrals, get as many as you can.

Referrals are one of the best ways for a contractor to show his customers the legitimacy of his business. The more referrals he has, the more credibility he has. And here’s the thing, every good contractor WANTS you to ask for his referrals and he wants you to check on them.

For any basement remodeling project to go according to plan there needs to be a certain amount of trust and accountability on both parties involved. The contractor knows that if you check his referrals and see he has done great work time after time, then you are going to trust the contractor and you are going to have better understanding of what to expect during the remodeling process.

If you talk to a contractor who is not enthusiastic about giving you his references, then you know that he is a contractor you should stay away from.

Marvelous Basements prides itself on being able to give a large number of quality references to their potential clients. If you are thinking about remodeling your basement and would like to see the work that we have previously done, give us call today. We guarantee that when we’re done finishing your basement that you too will be on our list of references.

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The Importance of a Matching Color Palette in Your Basement Design

Basement design is so important to creating the perfect finished basement pictures that we take when we wrap up a client’s project. There are so many facets within basement design that it would take forever to go through them all in detail. One facet that’s importance can’t be understated is your basement’s color palette.

When people hear the term “color palette” they generally think of a large color wheel of paint samples. Although paint is part of your basement’s color palette, it is not the only thing. Your cabinets, counter top, lighting fixtures, appliances, carpeting, etc. etc. all play a part in creating your color palette.

The problem that comes in to play, which is seen often, is when homeowners go and choose all their colors and materials without considering if what they selected will match the rest of their basement design.

In a simple world it would be easy to just go to Home Depot and select your favorite carpeting, and then go pick out your favorite color paint for the walls, and then head down to the kitchen section and order your favorite cabinets, but it just doesn’t work that way. Each piece of material that you order for your basement plays a part in creating an appealing basement color palette.

These “color palettes” do not just come together on their own. It takes a lot of planning to get all the pieces to fit together and match.

If you are trying to design your basement and you need to figure out what type of color palette you want. I would recommend looking at a lot of finished basement pictures. Find out what looks good to you and use those pictures as starting points for how to put together a complimentary color palette for your basement.

If you need help creating the perfect color palette for your St. Louis basement design then call Marvelous Basements today and let the pros show you what basement design is all about.

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Dry Wall Selection for Your Basement Bathroom and Wet Bar Area – Make the Right Decision

We see it all the time, bathroom walls damaged and infested with mold, mildew and fungus, completely ruined due over-exposure to moisture.  We don’t blame the walls though, it’s not their fault. The blame rests with the person who decided to install regular drywall for the bathroom walls.

Honestly any contractor should know better from making such a mistake. Homeowners need to be better educated about this as well.

Installing regular drywall in a basement bathroom is a huge no-no.

There are many types of drywall out on the market today but just because you can buy it at the store does not mean you can put it in your bathroom. Basements are more susceptible to moisture than other sections of the house as it is. So when it’s time to install drywall in your basement bathroom you are going to need more than just any ole kind of drywall. If you are going to protect your basement bathroom, and any other area that has a greater chance of being exposed to moisture, then you need to make sure you or your contractor installs waterproof drywall.

At Marvelous Basements our clients expect the best basement possible. So we cut no corners, even when it comes to selecting the drywall. We use Gold Bond XP drywall on all exterior walls in bathrooms and wet bars. Gold Bond XP provides a safe, mold free environment because of its special, non-toxic, Greenguard and Sporeguard certified chemical content. Gold Bond XP drywall is conditionally warranted not to grow mold or mildew for 25 years.

Even if your walls look like they are fine, mold can still grow underneath them if the proper material is not selected for your basement bathroom and wet bar areas. So when it comes to not only the quality and longevity of your basement walls but also your family’s health, make sure you go with a drywall that defends against mold and mildew. It’s worth the extra investment.

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Water Filters – More Important than You Think

In the previous post we looked at how something as little as a shower head can take your basement bathroom design to the next level. Most homeowners forget about these types of details when designing a basement. They are usually focused on much bigger items like countertops and appliances.

We’re now going to look at another small basement design detail that can help take your wet bar to the next level: water filters. Installing a water filter in your basement can provide on so many levels.

To start, it will improve the quality of your drinking water.

If you’re like most of our clients then your finished basement is where you are going to be spending a large portion of the time hanging out and entertaining others. You want everything to be as comfortable as possible and simply adding a water filter can help by improving the taste of your drinking water. Good tasting drinking water cannot be overstated especially when you are having a party.

Also, a water filter can actually help you save money.

So many times we see clients who do not use a water filter stock up on copious amounts of bottled water. Having a water filter can eliminate that cost from your monthly expenditures. In some cases we even see clients cut back on their soda consumption as well, not only saving them more money but it also creating a healthier lifestyle.

Like I said, good tasting drinking water cannot be overstated.

There are tons of different types of water filters available on the market today so make sure you do some research to see what will be the best for you. Remember, water filters come in all sorts of sizes and installation methods as well so keep that in mind when you go to make a selection.

It’s definitely cool to have big screen TV’s and granite countertops. But, If those things are above your means then look to add some of the little things to your basement that can really make it pop, like a water filter.

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Choosing The Perfect Basement Bathroom Shower Head

As with most things in life, it’s the little things that count. It’s no different when it comes to  basement bathroom design. Even though it’s cool to have the flashy perks that standout in a basement it’s always good to make sure a basement is chock full of the little things that tie the room together.

Finding a perfect shower head for your basement bathroom can be one of those things. Make no mistake, it would seem like choosing a shower head is not a big deal but it can be every bit as important as selecting an appliance for a kitchen or the type of A/V components you want to put in your basement theater.

There are many aspects that differentiate the thousands of shower heads that are available on the market today. So you’ll want to do your research before you go out there and pick some ole willy-nilly shower head off the shelf at Home Depot. Chances are if you don’t do your research you’ll be traveling back up to Home Depot the following week to spend some time at the “returns” desk.

To avoid all the wasted time and heartache here some things you should be considering when choosing your shower head.

Type of finish

As with all types of bathroom fixtures, shower heads come in a variety of finishes. From copper to polished nickel, they have something for everybody. Make sure you purchase a shower head that matches the finishes of your other bathroom fixtures.

Handheld shower head

Traditionally it is common to have a fixed shower head mounted on your wall. However, there are plenty of homeowners who opt to go the route of a handheld shower head.

Size of shower head

Once you get into your research you will find there are a slew of different sized shower heads. Although it is up to the homeowner to decide which size is right for them it is important to note that the larger the shower head generally means the greater consumption of water.


Some homeowners prefer to have the power of a fire hose backing up their shower head while others look to have a more conservative stream. Many shower heads today come with a built in water saving plug that helps minimize the flow of water out of your shower head. Keep an eye out for those features so that you select the shower head that is right for you.

Wall mounted or ceiling mounted?

The choice of a wall mounted or ceiling mounted shower head is important but it also needs to be decided upon early in the design phase. Knowing where the shower head will be mounted in advance will saves hours of heartache and labor as the plumbing can be run to the correct location with the fewest possible problems.

If you would like help designing the perfect basement bathroom around your perfect shower head then call Marvelous Basements today and we’ll get started on the bathroom design that you deserve.

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