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Basement Remodeling

One of the most cost-effective ways to add square footage and value to your home is by remodeling the unfinished space that you already own--your basement. Basements frequently serve as ideal locations for media & theatre rooms, home offices, children’s playrooms, wine cellars, craft rooms, wet bars, game/rec rooms, exercise rooms, home libraries, and many other uses. Because the structure is already in place, basements are easily the most economical way to add lots of space to a home and are often viewed as an enticing perk to would-be buyers in the re-sale market.

How much will it cost?

It is difficult to say how much it costs to remodel a basement because of the uncertainty regarding the amenities you would like to have. Wet bars, home theatres, solid surface countertops, and other high-end finishes can significantly increase the cost. Generally speaking, basements can be finished for $30 to $70 sq. ft.

The per sq. ft. cost will be higher in instances of smaller basements because finishing a bathroom is more expensive per sq. ft. and ultimately that cost will be spread across the entire per square foot cost. The larger basements, using this same reasoning, will have a lower per square foot cost. We recommend setting up an appointment for accurate pricing.

Requirements for Exits & Windows

It is frequently asked whether there are certain requirements for exits and windows in a basement. Wisconsin’s Uniform Dwelling Code states that all basements must have at least one of the following exit types: a) a door to the exterior of the dwelling or b) a stairway to the floor above. Basements used for sleeping must also have a 2nd exit located as far away from the 1st exit as practical. This condition might be satisfied by either of the previously mentioned exit types and/or a) stairway to the garage, providing the garage has an exit door besides the overhead doors or b) a qualifying egress window.

Windows for the purpose of providing natural light are only required in sleeping rooms and must have a surface area equal to 8% of the room’s square footage. Thus a 12’ x 12’ bedroom would require a window sized about 3’ x 4’. Furthermore, windows may also be required for natural ventilation in all habitable basement rooms if there is not a balanced mechanical ventilation system providing at least 1 air change per hour of fresh outside air.

Why Choose Bay Lakes to Remodel my Basement?
Perhaps it's better to hear it directly from our customers...

Dear Paul-

As you know, when we purchased our home from you in October 2002 it was a featured "Parade of Homes" model. Since we were returning to our home in Florida we asked, and you agreed, to finish the lower level. We asked that it be finished with the same quality of workmanship that was put into the rest of the house. When we returned in April 2003, to our pleasure the lower level was completed and we were most pleased with its finishing and appearance. We have had many compliments on our home including the lower walk-out level. We certainly would recommend Bay Lakes as a contractor of distinction in completing basements.

Richard & Joan Nowak


Sue and I are extremely pleased with the quality of the design, work, and professionalism of Bay Lakes Builders & Development. We began with a general idea of what our needs are and some idea of how to divide our basement space to meet those needs, but with no real idea of how to fully accomplish what we wanted and needed. Paul was able to meet with us and bring us back a design within a short time. After we looked at the design, we discussed some changes we wanted and Paul, once again, came back with modifications that better met our needs. The original design had the advantage of getting Sue and I to better understand what we wanted and what could be done in the basement.

Once the design was agreed upon and the cost estimate was agreed upon, we began to pick out the materials needed for the project, type of wood, finishes, floor coverings, paint, etc. We were very pleased with the options available and the help we were provided in understanding our options. The actual work on our basement began soon after the agreement was reached.

The workers were very professional. They worked hard to keep the mess to a minimum and were helpful in many ways. They were very respectful of our home and the need to gain access to the basement. Separate locks were provided to that we could lock up the basement from the rest of the house. All the subcontractors were equally professional and all did excellent work and were also quite willing to talk to us about what they were doing and did we want or need to make minor changes. Examples include some door placements and light and switch locations.

We had some custom book shelves made that are wonderful, both in terms of design, but also in terms of quality of work and their finish. We are extremely pleased with them and everyone who sees them loves them.

The project was completed in a timely manner with full cleanup of the project area and the basement. Sue and I could not be happier with the outcome. Our family is fully enjoying the benefits of a finished basement and everyone who sees it is complimentary about its appearance and its functionality. My wife loves her office. We all like the fact that it does not look like a basement. The quality of the work is such that the space looks like any other space in the house, it does not look like a finished basement, a high complement to the design and the work done.

The project was completed on time in within budget.

Sue and I highly recommend Bay Lakes Builders & Development to anyone considering having their basement remodeled.

Allyn Uniacke & Sue Hammersmith


My wife Sue and I decided to add more living space to our home this past year. The basement seemed to be the logical location for this expansion. We contacted Paul Soletski and requested that he finish off the basement the quality must be identical to the rest of the house. We wanted another level to our home, not a basement rec room. Paul and his team did just that. Every detail was planned and completed as if they were building a showcase from the under staircase bar area to the cabinets which house a 60” television. Paul’s expertise of service to his customers truly shown throughout this project. We are extremely pleased!

Mr. Brad Van Pay


Thank you to the Bay Lakes crew for an excellent job on finishing off our basement. Shortly after purchasing our new home and enjoying the quality of craftsmanship and unique features, we knew the next step would be to have our basement completed. With Paul’s creative ideas and input, a design was agreed upon that would flow with the consistency and quality of the rest of the house.

Our family and friends enjoy spending time in our latest completed addition and the compliments continue to come on the warmth and appeal created by this new space.

Thanks again for all your great ideas and quality work.

Tom & Kim Vande Corput


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Bay Lakes Builders & Development
1411 S. Webster Avenue • Green Bay, WI

PH 920.437.7700 • FX 920.437.7707

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